The police received a report of a vehicle losing control and sliding off the road into a snowbank. When the police arrived at the scene they observed PJL endeavouring to drive his vehicle out of the ditch. The police shouted at PJL to turn the car off but PJL refused and continued to spin the wheels of the vehicle. Finally, the police threatened to taser PJL if he did not comply, whereupon PJL exited the vehicle.
PJL was taken abruptly to the ground and arrested for careless and impaired driving. A struggle ensued during which PJL endeavoured to conceal various items. — PJL’s efforts were unsuccessful in this regard.
A search of PJL “incidental to arrest” resulted in the seizure of over $3,000 cash, 3 cellular phones, 24 individually wrapped packages of crack cocaine and 4 packages of powder cocaine.
As a consequence of the foregoing, PJL 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 powder cocaine for the purpose of trafficking contrary to Section 5(2) of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act.
- Possession of proceeds of crime.
- Resisting arrest.
- Careless driving.
As the Crown was seeking a lengthy period of imprisonment in a federal institution PJL retained the legal services of Patrick Fagan. Patrick Fagan entered an election of trial by way of Provincial Court Judge, entered pleas of not guilty to all charges and scheduled the matter for trial.
BOTTOM LINE: On the verge of trial proceedings the entire matter was dealt with by way of a guilty plea to SIMPLE possession of cocaine contrary to Section 4(1) of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act and all other charges were completely withdrawn. The matter was dealt with by way of a “suspended” sentence pursuant to which a brief period of probation was imposed.