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To: The Justice of the Peace Review Council
Attention: Marilyn E. King
From: Dan Perrins
RE: Complaints made on November 3 and 4 of 2010.
Dear Ms King,
I have received your response to my original complaint letters faxed on November 3 and 4 of 2010.
I was quite surprised at your response regarding my complaints.
In your response letter you state that my complaints make no mention of conduct however this is not true. Please find enclosed in this response the information provided by your website about the current code of conduct and law that applies to all Justices of the Peace. Given that the information on your website defines what conduct is acceptable and what is not one would draw the conclusion that any complaint letter would be about conduct of a Justice of the Peace.
They are as follows:
1. THE JUSTICE OF THE PEACE IN COURT
1.1 Justices of the peace must be impartial and objective in the discharge of their judicial duties.
1.2 Justices of the peace have a duty to follow the law.
2.2 Justices of the peace should conduct court business with due diligence and dispose of all matters before them promptly and efficiently having regard, at all times, to the interests of justice and the rights of the parties before the court.
2.4 Justices of the peace have a duty to maintain their professional competence in the law.
2.5 The primary responsibility of justices of the peace is the discharge of their judicial duties.
3.3 Justices of the peace must not abuse the power of their judicial office or use it inappropriately.
The Grounds for my complaints were as follows:
1) That all three Justices of the Peace ( Their Worships L. Ross, Devellano and an unnamed Justice of the Peace Presiding over my case on September 24, 2010 in court room 100) failed to uphold the law and protect my rights in their court, specifically those granted to me under Section 136 of the Courts of Justice Act which gives the persons the right to audio record their own personal proceedings.
The rulings of said Worships were in direct violation with sections : 1.1 , 1.2 , 2.2 , 2.5 and section 3.3. These are all conduct issues and as such fall under your jurisdiction.
2) That by Refusing to allow me to exercise my rights under the law Her Worship ( L. Ross, Devellanno, and the unnamed Justice of the Peace) has obstructed justice and has violated her sworn oath and duty as a Justice of the Peace.
Again Ms King I would like to point out that the decisions made by their Worships were a direct violation of current consolidated law and as such falls under the description of conduct. The Justice of the Peace Review Council Code of Conduct stipulates conduct which is acceptable and that which is not.”1.2 Justices of the peace have a duty to follow the law.”
In The Criminal Code of Canada the description for the crime of Obstructing Justice is as follows
139. (1) Every one who wilfully attempts in any manner to obstruct, pervert or defeat the course of justice in a judicial proceeding,
(a) by indemnifying or agreeing to indemnify a surety, in any way and either in whole or in part, or
(b) where he is a surety, by accepting or agreeing to accept a fee or any form of indemnity whether in whole or in part from or in respect of a person who is released or is to be released from custody,
is guilty of
(c) an indictable offence and is liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years, or
(d) an offence punishable on summary conviction.
(2) Every one who wilfully attempts in any manner other than a manner described in subsection (1) to obstruct, pervert or defeat the course of justice is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding ten years.
(3) Without restricting the generality of subsection (2), every one shall be deemed wilfully to attempt to obstruct, pervert or defeat the course of justice who in a judicial proceeding, existing or proposed,
(a) dissuades or attempts to dissuade a person by threats, bribes or other corrupt means from giving evidence;
(b) influences or attempts to influence by threats, bribes or other corrupt means a person in his conduct as a juror; or
(c) accepts or obtains, agrees to accept or attempts to obtain a bribe or other corrupt consideration to abstain from giving evidence, or to do or to refrain from doing anything as a juror.
R.S., c. C-34, s. 127; R.S., c. 2(2nd Supp.), s. 3; 1972, c. 13, s. 8.
In section two (2) of 139 [underlined and in bold font so as to facilitate easier reading]of the Criminal Code the elements of the crime are as follows:
1. Everyone: this description is absolute and means exactly what it says
2. Who wilfully: The Justices of the Peace are in command of their courts and as such any acts done by them can only be interpreted as having been done wilfully.
3. Attempts: Not only did the three justices of the peace attempt but succeeded in that my rights were abused and as well the current consolidated law was ignored even when I informed the justices of the relevant sections under the Courts of Justice Act.
4. in any manner: any manner would include disregarding current consolidated laws and or practice directions.
5. obstruct, pervert or defeat the course of justice: one definition of obstructing justice is:
“an attempt to interfere with the administration of the courts, the judicial system or law enforcement officers. It may include tampering with or intimidating, hiding evidence or interfering with an arrest. It is something a person does to impede the administration of a court process or proper discharge of a legal duty.”
The definition of Pervert is: to use wrongly or badly, to interpret wrongly or badly; distort
One definition of Defeat is: to frustrate; thwart.
Clearly the definition of Obstructing Justice found in section 139(2) of the Criminal Code of Canada describes the events that have happened here at the Ontario Courts of Justice located here in Hamilton at 45 Main st. E. also known as The Sopinka Courthouse.
I would like to refer to your website's own definitions of what the Justice of the Peace Review Council states is to do.
The Role of the Justices of the Peace Review Council
The Justices of the Peace Review Council is a Council established by the Province of Ontario under the Justices of the Peace Act. The Review Council has a mandate to receive and investigate complaints against justices of the peace, review and approve standards of conduct, deal with the continuing education plan and decide whether a justice of the peace may engage in other remunerative work. The Review Council is made up of judges, justices of the peace, a lawyer and four community representatives. The Review Council does not have the power to interfere with or change a decision made by a justice of the peace. Only an appeal court can do that.
Professional Conduct of Justices of the Peace
In Ontario, we expect high standards both in the delivery of justice and in the conduct of the justices of the peace who have the responsibility to make decisions. Anyone who has a complaint about the conduct of a justice of the peace may make a formal complaint to the Justices of the Peace Review Council.
Fortunately, judicial misconduct is unusual. Examples of judicial misconduct could include: gender or racial bias or failure to disclose a conflict of interest with one of the parties in a court case.
While your own website's examples of what might be misconduct they are limited to only two (2) examples. I am sure that Obstructing Justice would fill all the requirements for misconduct. I am as well sure that the examples you provide are not extensive and therefore would lend to the belief that there can be other forms of misconduct.
In the literature on your website it states that the council has the mandate to receive and investigate complaints against justices of the Peace. I made three complaints about three different Justices of the Peace which were completely disregarded. The terms “ obstructed justice..... and violated her sworn oath and duty” as well as “ .. such blatant lack of knowledge and respect …... has brought the administration of justice into disrepute” were as well completely ignored as well
This shows clearly that the above noted Justices of the Peace have failed to their duty to section 2.4 of the code of conduct for Justices of the Peace “Justices of the peace have a duty to maintain their professional competence in the law.”
Under section 2.5 of the Justice of the Peace's code of conduct it is made clear that the primary responsibilities of a Justice of the Peace is the discharge of their duties. If as stated in previous sections of the code of conduct for Justices of the Peace have been violated and or disregarded as well if current consolidate law has been broken by the aforementioned Justices of the Peace then clearly said Justices of the Peace are not undertaking their responsibilities with the care, diligence, and respect that their position demands of them.
It is clear that the above noted Justices of the Peace have violated the code of conduct which governs them and their acts.
I am not requesting the Justice of the Peace Review Council intervene nor am asking that any decisions made by the above noted Worships be overturned. I am asking the council to do its job which is to investigate the actions of said Justices of the Peace as stated in the information on your web-page,” The Review Council has a mandate to receive and investigate complaints against justices of the peace”
I agree with your statement about expecting high standards from Justices of the Peace also located on the above noted web-page. However this has not been what has been happening. The incredible lack of professionalism, lack of legal knowledge and as well the inability to remain objective and respect the rights of all parties appearing before them has been heinous. These can only be interpreted as conduct issues.
“In Ontario, we expect high standards both in the delivery of justice and in the conduct of the justices of the peace who have the responsibility to make decisions. “
Failure of the aforementioned Justices of the Peace to preform their duties competently and within the rule of law as well in conjunction with the standards set by The Justice of the Peace Review Council amounts to misconduct.
Section 136(2) of the Courts of Justice Act is clear and as well is Chief Justice Howland's Practice Direction.
In 2007 The Premier and the Attorney General issued a press release the applicable part of which is reproduced below:
Recommendation #2: Use of Tape Recorders
The restriction on the use of tape recorders in court is codified in the Courts of Justice Act and would require a legislative amendment to remove the restriction. The McGuinty government will consult with the judiciary and is committed to introducing such an amendment
The ministry is conducting a policy review and analysis, and developing options in consultation with the Chief Justices for potential amendments to the Courts of Justice Act to permit the unobtrusive use of tape recorders by lawyers, parties representing themselves and journalists at a court hearing without prior approval of the judge
In the interim, the ministry is consulting with the judiciary on new signage for all courthouses across Ontario that would more accurately reflect the 1989 Howland Practice Direction, which can permit such use without prior approval of the presiding judge.
This excerpt is taken from the Attorney General's website located at:
The “Howland Directive” is still in force and effect. The practice direction issued by Chief Justice Howland was confirmed to still be applicable on October 8, 2010 in court room 306 by Justice Speyer in the case of R. v. Perrins 10-1995
A response in writing would be appropriate and appreciated.
David Christopherson, M. P. Constituency Office 22 Tisdale Street South Hamilton, Ontario L8N 2V3 Telephone: (905) 526-0770 Fax: (905) 526-9943
Andrea Horwath, M.P.P. Constituency Suite 200 20 Hughson Street South Hamilton, Ontario L8N 2A1 Tel 905-544-9644 Fax 905-544-5152
Ted McMeekin, M.P.P. P.O. Box 1240, Waterdown, ON, L0R 2H0 905-690-6552 Toll-Free: 888-566-6614 Fax: 905-690-6562