Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Crown gets two months to provide vetted copy of search warrants

The public moved a small step closer Tuesday to learning whether last month’s massive guns-and-gangs crackdown in Toronto’s west end had any connection to Mayor Rob Ford, the NatPosts's Megan O'Toole reports.
An Ontario judge gave the Crown two months to provide media lawyers with a vetted copy of sealed search warrant materials related to Project Traveller, rejecting the prosecution’s request to adjourn the matter for six to nine months.
“The Crown’s position is not compatible with the presumption that judicial proceedings are open and public,” Justice Philip Downes said.
“Justice delayed can in some circumstances mean that justice is denied. This may be one of those instances.”
Although his ruling stipulates that media lawyers must be given a copy of the warrant materials by Aug. 27, it may still be months more before the public gets a glimpse. After reviewing the information, media lawyers, who were initially hoping to obtain the documents later this month, must separately make arguments for a public unsealing.

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