August 11, 1917 (12th Parliament, 7th Session)


Charles Joseph Doherty (Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada)

Conservative (1867-1942)


The Bill was drafted by the Deputy Minister of Justice and I understand that in putting it in this form he put it in the same form, and dealt with it in the same manner, as analogous offences are dealt with in the Criminal Code generally. With all respect, and while I am prepared to admit what may be the more accurate knowledge of my hon. friend, I entertain a pretty strong conviction that it is open to the accused in a matter of this kind

to obtain a summary trial. In any event, should that not be true, there is no injustice done to the public, or done to the individual, and there is no evil, from the point of view of the public prosecution, arising from allowing it to stand as an indictable offence. All that is lost is that there would be no option on the part of the prosecution to proceed otherwise 'than one is bound to proceed upon an indictable offence. I am sorry that I did not anticipate the raising of this question, which is quite a proper question for the hon. gentleman to raise, and that, not being provided with the Criminal Code, I am not in a position to speak more positively than I do. But, I feel confident that no injury would be done to anybody liable to be prosecuted for this offence by reason of its being made an indictable offence.

Topic:   XI, 1917
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