July 22, 1946

PC

John Thomas Hackett

Progressive Conservative

Mr. HACKETT:

That is the only province in which-

Topic:   CRIMINAL CODE
Subtopic:   JURORS IN CRIMINAL CASES IN SASKATCHEWAN AND ALBERTA
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LIB

William Ross Macdonald (Deputy Speaker and Chair of Committees of the Whole of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. DEPUTY SPEAKER:

Order. The house is not in committee.

Topic:   CRIMINAL CODE
Subtopic:   JURORS IN CRIMINAL CASES IN SASKATCHEWAN AND ALBERTA
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PC

John Thomas Hackett

Progressive Conservative

Mr. HACKETT:

I was going to ask a question, if I might.

Topic:   CRIMINAL CODE
Subtopic:   JURORS IN CRIMINAL CASES IN SASKATCHEWAN AND ALBERTA
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LIB

William Ross Macdonald (Deputy Speaker and Chair of Committees of the Whole of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. DEPUTY SPEAKER:

It is not regular to ask questions until the bill is in committee. However, I am in the hands of the house.

Topic:   CRIMINAL CODE
Subtopic:   JURORS IN CRIMINAL CASES IN SASKATCHEWAN AND ALBERTA
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PC

John Thomas Hackett

Progressive Conservative

Mr. HACKETT:

I shall ask the question later on.

Bill read the second time and the house went into committee thereon, Mr. Golding in the chair.

On section 1-Application of act to Alberta.

Topic:   CRIMINAL CODE
Subtopic:   JURORS IN CRIMINAL CASES IN SASKATCHEWAN AND ALBERTA
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CCF

Stanley Howard Knowles (Whip of the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation)

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. KNOWLES:

I confess that I am terribly out of my depth here-

Topic:   CRIMINAL CODE
Subtopic:   JURORS IN CRIMINAL CASES IN SASKATCHEWAN AND ALBERTA
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LIB

James Sinclair

Liberal

Mr. SINCLAIR (Vancouver North):

That will not discourage you from asking questions.

Topic:   CRIMINAL CODE
Subtopic:   JURORS IN CRIMINAL CASES IN SASKATCHEWAN AND ALBERTA
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CCF

Stanley Howard Knowles (Whip of the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation)

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. KNOWLES:

When this bill passes it leaves us with only one province in the dominion where there is a six-man jury.

Mr. ST. LAURENT: Yes, that is my understanding. My understanding is that all the other provinces will now have twelve jurors sworn to try indictments.

Topic:   CRIMINAL CODE
Subtopic:   JURORS IN CRIMINAL CASES IN SASKATCHEWAN AND ALBERTA
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CCF

Stanley Howard Knowles (Whip of the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation)

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. KNOWLES:

Is the matter brought on by provincial request? Obviously we have jurisdiction because we are doing it here. What puzzles me is the explanatory note which says:

The object of this amendment is to make the provisions of the criminal code applicable uniformly so far as possible, to all the provinces . . .

If there is argument for having a twelve-man jury in eight provinces, why should we not have it right across Canada?

Mr. ST. LAURENT: It is a matter which is, of course, within the jurisdiction of parliament. But it has been the practice to endeavour to meet the requests of the provincial authorities, because they incur the expense of providing courts to try indictments. At one time Saskatchewan as well as Alberta expressed the desire, for the purpose of facilitating the organizing of juries, to reduce the number from twelve to six. After a few years' experience in Saskatchewan, they have come to the conclusion that they want to go back to the

Exchequer Court Act

system of twelve jurymen, but in Alberta they are still satisfied to operate with six. Of course it does not require the summoning of as large a panel to make a choice of a six-man jury possible. There is less expense incurred in summoning a panel for the selection of a jury if you require only six than if you have to summon a panel large enough to be able to pick twelve jurors out of it. So long as the government of Alberta, and the people of Alberta, as represented by, amongst others, the hon. member for Calgary West, say that they prefer it to the more expensive system, the Department of Justice tries to fall in with their views. In everything that is done under the criminal code we try to get the cooperation of the provincial authorities, and we try to extend our cooperation to them for the purpose of facilitating the administration of justice.

Topic:   CRIMINAL CODE
Subtopic:   JURORS IN CRIMINAL CASES IN SASKATCHEWAN AND ALBERTA
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PC

John Ritchie MacNicol

Progressive Conservative

Mr. MacNICOL:

The hon. member for

Calgary West is satisfied?

Mr. ST. LAURENT: Yes.

Topic:   CRIMINAL CODE
Subtopic:   JURORS IN CRIMINAL CASES IN SASKATCHEWAN AND ALBERTA
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Section agreed to. On section 2-Trial without jury in Alberta, by consent.


CCF

Frank Eric Jaenicke

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. JAENICKE:

Section 2 provides that in an indictable offence an accused may be tried with his own consent by a judge of the superior court. Is that under part 17 or part 18 of the code?

Mr. ST. LAURENT: That is under part 18 of the code, or rather it is -to bring Alberta under the code and conserve this particular provision which resulted from the Northwest Territories Act. The six-man jury and this special provision were the only portions that remained inconsistent with the criminal code. The criminal code can be made to apply generally in Alberta, provided that we have this and the other disposition with respect to the six-man jury.

Topic:   CRIMINAL CODE
Subtopic:   JURORS IN CRIMINAL CASES IN SASKATCHEWAN AND ALBERTA
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CCF

Frank Eric Jaenicke

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. JAENICKE:

The accused would have the right to be tried by a district court judge, as we call them in Alberta and Saskatchewan, under part 17, as well as by a judge of the supreme court or the court of king's bench without the intervention of a jury?

Mr. ST. LAURENT: Yes.

Topic:   CRIMINAL CODE
Subtopic:   JURORS IN CRIMINAL CASES IN SASKATCHEWAN AND ALBERTA
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CCF

Frank Eric Jaenicke

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. JAENICKE:

It would not be called a speedy trial.

Mr. ST. LAURENT: Here he can be tried with his own consent by a judge of a superior court of criminal jurisdiction.

Topic:   CRIMINAL CODE
Subtopic:   JURORS IN CRIMINAL CASES IN SASKATCHEWAN AND ALBERTA
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CCF

Frank Eric Jaenicke

Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (C.C.F.)

Mr. JAENICKE:

Under part 18.

63260-235J

Mr. ST. LAURENT: That would be a judge of the supreme court of Alberta, as it is called in that province, I believe, but he could be tried by a judge of the supreme court of Alberta without the intervention of a jury if ' he so elects.

Section 2 agreed to.

Sections 3 to 7 inclusive agreed to.

Topic:   CRIMINAL CODE
Subtopic:   JURORS IN CRIMINAL CASES IN SASKATCHEWAN AND ALBERTA
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Title agreed to. Bill reported.


EXCHEQUER COURT ACT

ADDITIONAL PUISNE JUDGE FOR EXCHEQUER COURT


Right Hon. L. S. ST. LAURENT (Minister of Justice) moved the second reading of bill No. 249, to amend the Exchequer Court Act. Motion agreed to, bill read the second time and the house went into committee thereon, Mr. Golding in the chair. On section 1-Constitution of court.


PC

Donald Methuen Fleming

Progressive Conservative

Mr. FLEMING:

Will the minister tell the committee when the governor in council proposes to appoint the additional judge provided for under this bill? It is a matter of some importance, I think, in view of the accumulation of cases in that court.

Mr. ST. LAURENT: The provision is being made now; I should not like to set any specific date for the appointment, but it is intended to have the judge in office after what we usually call the long vacation.

Topic:   EXCHEQUER COURT ACT
Subtopic:   ADDITIONAL PUISNE JUDGE FOR EXCHEQUER COURT
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July 22, 1946