Bill 202 2011
An Act respecting jury trials for provincial offences
Note: This Act amends or repeals more than one Act. For the legislative history of these Acts, see the Table of Consolidated Public Statutes – Detailed Legislative History at www.e-Laws.gov.on.ca.
Her Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Legislative Assembly of the Province of Ontario, enacts as follows:
Provincial Offences Act
1. The Provincial Offences Act is amended by adding the following sections:
46.1 (1) A defendant may require that a proceeding be tried by a court composed of a judge and jury if any of the following circumstances exist:
1. A conviction for the offence may be punishable by,
i. a fine of $25,000 or more,
ii. seizure of property, or
iii. a term of imprisonment.
2. The defendant can demonstrate that there is a reasonable likelihood that a conviction for the offence charged would result in the termination or suspension of a membership or licence in respect of a regulated profession under the Fair Access to Regulated Professions Act, 2006 or a health profession under the Regulated Health Professions Act, 1991.
3. The defendant can demonstrate that there is a reasonable likelihood that a conviction for the offence charged would result in the termination or suspension of a licence or registration issued under an Act that relates to,
i. the defendant's business,
ii. the business of a partnership of which the defendant is a partner, or
iii. the business of a corporation of which the defendant is an officer or director.
(2) Subject to subsection 38 (2), if a defendant is charged with more than one offence and any of the offences meet the criteria set out in subsection (1), the defendant may request that the offences be tried together by a court composed of a judge and jury.
Timing of request
(3) The defendant shall make the requests described in subsections (1) and (2) when entering a plea.
Exception, trial re capacity to conduct defence
(4) Subsection (1) does not apply to a trial undertaken for the purposes of section 44.
Composition of jury
46.2 (1) If a proceeding is tried with a jury, the jury shall be composed of 12 persons selected in accordance with the Juries Act.
Discharge of juror at trial
(2) The judge presiding at a trial may discharge a juror on the ground of illness, hardship, partiality or other sufficient cause.
Continuation of jury
(3) If a juror dies or is discharged, the judge may direct that the trial proceed with the remaining jurors.
46.3 (1) After the trial, the judge shall require the jury to give a verdict and the judgment shall be entered in accordance with the verdict.
Verdict to be unanimous
(2) The jury's verdict must be unanimous.
Disagreement of jury
(3) If the judge is satisfied that the jury is unable to agree on its verdict and that further deliberation would be useless, the judge may discharge the jury and direct a new jury to be empanelled during the sittings of the court or adjourn the trial on such terms as justice may require.
2. Section 57 of the Act is amended by adding the following subsection:
Jury recommendations re sentencing
(5) If a proceeding is tried by a court composed of a judge and jury, the jury may provide recommendations for the purpose of assisting the court in imposing sentence.
3. The Juries Act is amended by adding the following section:
Regulations, Lieutenant Governor in Council
37.1 The Lieutenant Governor in Council may make regulations prescribing any modifications that are necessary for the application of this Act to a jury trial in the Ontario Court of Justice for the purposes of a proceeding under the Provincial Offences Act.
Commencement and Short Title
4. This Act comes into force on the day it receives Royal Assent.
5. The short title of this Act is the Provincial Offences Statute Law Amendment Act (Jury Trials), 2011.
The Bill amends the Provincial Offences Act by allowing persons charged with an offence to choose to be tried by a court composed of a judge and jury if any of the following circumstances exist:
1. The penalty for the offence includes a fine of $25,000 or more, seizure of property, or a term of imprisonment.
2. There is a reasonable likelihood that a conviction would result in the termination or suspension of,
i. the person's professional licence or membership, or
ii. a licence or registration of a business that is connected to the individual.
A jury is composed of 12 persons selected in accordance with the Juries Act.
The jury is required to give a unanimous verdict. If the jury cannot agree, the judge may adjourn the trial or discharge the jury and direct the empanelling of new jury.
The jury may make recommendations relating to sentencing.
The Juries Act is amended to enable the Lieutenant Governor in Council to make regulations concerning the application of the Act to a jury trial under the Provincial Offences Act.