Monday at G20 bail courts – not quite as positive

I continue to be very impressed with court staff.  They are doing a fantastic job.

There was a major issue getting arrestees to court in the morning – most did not arrive till late morning/early afternoon from Maplehurst.  People were arriving from the detention centre throughout the day.  While the courts were prepared to work, there was nothing to do.

Large groups started arriving into the evening.  The Crown made the correct decision to release many of these people (provided they were not involved in an act of overt violence) on their own recognizances even though many were from Quebec (cash would normally be required).  Well into the evening, though, there was a decision from court administration to stop doing releases and begin to remand people.  The judiciary tried to accommodate where they could but obviously many were very frustrated with this decision.

A video court was set-up around 10pm to remand people still at the detention centre - most of whom were French-speaking.  There are obviously legal issues with doing this as people have the right to appear before a JP within a day of arrest for the purposes of bail.  Obviously video doesn’t accomplish this.  Some of these individuals claimed to not having received access to counsel.  There was a request for food and water.  I cannot comment on the legitimacy of these claims but am relaying what I heard.

Since appearances were made by video, my understanding is that these people would now be under the jurisdiction of the bail courts and cannot be released by the police.  Thus, if you know someone in the facility, you might as well head to court.

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