2. Regina v. LPJ [Provincial Court of Alberta, Calgary – April 2019]
In June 2018 at approximately 9:00 a.m. a uniformed member of the Calgary Police Service (“CPS”) initiated a traffic stop of a vehicle a vehicle being driven by LPJ. When the police conducted a CPIC check on LPJ, they noted that he had existing bail conditions which prohibited him from possessing a cellular phone.
When the police returned to LPJ’s vehicle they observed a cellular phone on the front console. When the police asked LPJ to step out of the vehicle, he refused. As a consequence, the police grabbed hold of LPJ and took him to the ground in a not-so-gentle manner.
A search of LPJ revealed the presence of a large quantity of cash. A search of the vehicle revealed the presence of a tin box containing 61 separate packages of cocaine.
As a consequence of the foregoing LPJ was charged with the following offences:
- Possession of crack cocaine for the purpose of trafficking contrary to Section 5(2) of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act.
- Possession of proceeds of crime contrary to Section 355(b) of the Criminal Code.
- Resisting arrest contrary to Section 129(a) of the Criminal Code.
- Breach of Recognizance contrary to Section 145(3) of the Criminal Code — the cellular phone restriction.
- Breach of Recognizance contrary to Section 145(3) of the Criminal Code — drug abstinence condition.
- Section 54(1)(a) of the Traffic Safety Act — Fail to stop for a red light.
As the Crown was seeking a lengthy period of imprisonment IF convicted, LPJ retained the legal services of Patrick Fagan. Patrick Fagan entered an election of trial by way of a Justice of the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta sitting without the intervention of a Jury but with a preliminary inquiry and scheduled the matter accordingly.
Bottom Line: As a consequence of perceived prosecutorial complications and challenges, Patrick Fagan was successful in resolving this most unfortunate prosecution in the following manner:
- A complete withdrawal of both breach of recognizance charges contrary to Section 145(3) of the Criminal Code.
- A complete withdrawal of the proceeds charge contrary to Section 355(b) of the Criminal Code.
- A complete withdrawal of the charge of possession of crack cocaine for the purpose of trafficking contrary to Section 5(2) of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act.
- A complete withdrawal of the traffic violation.
- All of the above was achieved in exchange for a guilty plea to “simple” possession of cocaine and resisting arrest. The matter was dealt with by way of modest fines (no probation) and no forfeiture of the vehicle in which the cocaine had been transported.
Finally, in addition to the foregoing result, Patrick Fagan was successful in securing a judicial order directing the police to return all cash seized to LPJ.
Patrick C. Fagan is a highly accomplished lawyer with an impressive career spanning over 35 years in the legal field.