Law professor: gov’t should appoint outside prosecutor for Fantino charge


There were some important developments in the McHale criminal charge against Fantino:

  • McGuinty will NOT ask Fantino to step down.
  • The Attorney General has intervened to take over the case and to fast-track the hearing. Instead of the Feb 3rd date contained in the summons issued by the judge, the hearing will now take place this Friday, Jan 15/09  at 0900 at the Cayuga Courthouse, 55 Munsee Street, Cayuga (Haldimand).  [MAP].
  • Since it now appears that the AG is planning to stay the charges, Gary McHale has issued a CANACE news release warning the media about these developments, and the top legal reporter for the National Post has published a story quoting the opinion of Osgoode hall criminal law professor James Stribopolous who says the government should appoint an outside prosecutor due to the serious conflict of interests caused when the Crown opposed McHale in court. He also warns the government against staying the charge. He says that dropping the charge would create a very “unfortunate impression that Fantino received special dispensation.”
  • McHale also sent a letter yesterday to the AG asking them to confirm whether or not they plan to stay the charge.

For links to the documents and other media coverage, please see:

In other developments:

  • Gary has a busy week ahead of him. In addition to preparing for Friday’s accelerated hearing, he is appearing before the Ontario Court of Appeals on Thursday for oral arguments against the Crown’s appeal of Justice Marshall’s decision in McHale v. R., 2009. This case has huge implications because the Crown’s basic argument on appeal is that police are exempt from prosecution during aboriginal land claim disputes and any charges filed against them are an abuse of the courts. The Crown believes it has the right to intervene to even prevent a private informant from preventing evidence of a crime to a justice of the peace. The law, however, is not on their side.
  • I have received permission from ‘Dancer’ and her family to release her name. Watch for a new ‘Strength of a Woman’ story about this courageous young lady very soon

Thank you Shannon Kari

I am working on a new CANACE legal project so I can’t provide any commentary at this time other than to say how pleased I am that top media people are on top of this, and to offer my sincere thanks to Shannon Kari of the National Post for researching and writing on the important legal issues associated with this case.

She was the Post’s legal expert who covered the last Fantino court fiasco – where he dropped the charges against two officers after spending $500K in legal actions to replace judges just to keep him from having to testify about how he targeted the officers for doing their job. I’m so happy she found a new Fantino story to write about once that one ended.

More information about race-based policing and CANACE

Journalists new to the story will find these especially helpful:

Mark Vandermaas, Editor
Co-founder, Canadian Advocates for Charter Equality

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