R. v. Tran (T.K.),

JudgeHillier,Hunt,Watson
Neutral Citation2008 ABCA 209
Citation2008 ABCA 209,(2008), 432 A.R. 234 (CA),432 AR 234,(2008), 432 AR 234 (CA),432 A.R. 234
Date05 March 2008
CourtCourt of Appeal (Alberta)

R. v. Tran (T.K.) (2008), 432 A.R. 234 (CA);

      424 W.A.C. 234

MLB headnote and full text

Temp. Cite: [2008] A.R. TBEd. JN.003

Her Majesty the Queen (appellant) v. Thieu Kham Tran (respondent)

(0603-0065-A; 2008 ABCA 209)

Indexed As: R. v. Tran (T.K.)

Alberta Court of Appeal

Hunt and Watson, JJ.A., and Hillier, J.(ad hoc)

June 2, 2008.

Summary:

The accused attacked his estranged wife and her boyfriend in the wife's apartment. The boyfriend died. The accused was charged with, inter alia, murder, attempted murder, and break and enter offences. The trial judge convicted the accused of manslaughter (due to provocation) and aggravated assault. The Crown appealed. The main issue was provocation.

The Alberta Court of Appeal allowed the appeal, substituted a verdict of guilty of second degree murder, and returned the matter to the trial judge for re-sentencing.

Criminal Law - Topic 1283

Murder - Provocation - What constitutes a "wrongful act" or "insult" - The accused and his wife were separated for 2.5 months - The accused had moved out of their apartment - They had discussed divorce and division of their matrimonial property and made custody and support arrangements - The husband had "suspicions" about his wife and had very recently told his godmother that he knew who the other man was - The accused called the apartment one morning and received no answer - He went to the apartment and entered using a key (which the wife did not know he had) - The accused discovered the wife and her boyfriend in the master bedroom in bed and naked - The husband went to the kitchen retrieved two large knives and attacked the boyfriend and the wife - The boyfriend died - The accused was charged with, inter alia, murder respecting the boyfriend - The trial judge convicted the accused of manslaughter based on the excuse of provocation - The Alberta Court of Appeal allowed the Crown's appeal and substituted a verdict of guilty of second degree murder - There was no air of reality to the assertion that there was a "wrongful act or insult" within the meaning of s. 232(2) of the Criminal Code - Although it was a question of fact as to whether "a particular wrongful act or insult" amounted to provocation, the evidence was incapable of taking the trier of fact past the issue of whether there was a wrongful act or insult - Nothing done by the wife or the boyfriend came close to meeting the definition of insult - Their behaviour was not only lawful, it was discreet and private and entirely passive vis-à-vis the accused - His own choice to enter the apartment, without permission, could not elevate what he discovered to the level of an "insult" for the purposes of provocation - Alternatively, if there was an insult, it could not be considered sudden, given his knowledge of the wife's relationship - See paragraphs 1 to 19.

Criminal Law - Topic 1283

Murder - Provocation - What constitutes a "wrongful act" or "insult" - The accused and his wife were separated - Section 232(2) of the Criminal Code provided that "[a] wrongful act or an insult that is of such a nature as to be sufficient to deprive an ordinary person of the power of self-control is provocation for the purposes of this section if the accused acted on it on the sudden and before there was time for his passion to cool." - The Alberta Court of Appeal held that the juxtaposition of the terms "wrongful act" and "insult" in s. 232(2) implied at least a minimum degree of moral wrongdoing on the part of the person "causing" the insult - The balance of the subsection focussed on tests for determining the possible effect of such behaviour on the accused - But issues of effect did not arise if there was no "insult", whatever might be the reaction of an accused to a situation - See paragraph 4.

Cases Noticed:

Taylor v. R., [1947] S.C.R. 462; 89 C.C.C. 209, refd to. [paras. 13, 56].

R. v. Gibson (J.T.) (2001), 153 B.C.A.C. 61; 251 W.A.C. 61; 2001 BCCA 297, refd to. [para. 13].

R. v. Parent (R.), [2001] 1 S.C.R. 761; 268 N.R. 372; 2001 SCC 30, refd to. [para. 13].

R. v. Thibert (N.E.), [1996] 1 S.C.R. 37; 192 N.R. 1; 178 A.R. 321; 110 W.A.C. 321; 131 D.L.R.(4th) 675, refd to. [paras. 14, 50].

R. v. Olbey, [1980] 1 S.C.R. 1008; 30 N.R. 152; 105 D.L.R.(3d) 385, refd to. [para. 14].

R. v. Simpson (P.W.) (1999), 125 B.C.A.C. 44; 204 W.A.C. 44; 1999 BCCA 310, refd to. [para. 14].

Director of Public Prosecutions v. Camplin, [1978] A.C. 705 (H.L.), refd to. [para. 14].

R. v. Sheridan (1990), 105 A.R. 122; 55 C.C.C.(3d) 313 (C.A.), refd to. [para. 14].

R. v. Daniels (1983), 47 A.R. 149; 7 C.C.C.(3d) 542 (N.W.T.C.A.), refd to. [para. 15].

R. v. Klassen (1997), 95 B.C.A.C. 136; 154 W.A.C. 136; 35 W.C.B.(2d) 210 (Yuk. C.A.), refd to. [para. 16].

R. v. Tripodi, [1955] S.C.R. 438; [1955] 4 D.L.R. 445; 112 C.C.C. 66, refd to. [paras. 16, 66].

R. v. Young (L.A.) (1993), 117 N.S.R.(2d) 166; 324 A.P.R. 166; 78 C.C.C.(3d) 538 (C.A.), refd to. [paras. 16, 60].

R. v. Faid, [1983] 1 S.C.R. 265; 46 N.R. 461; 42 A.R. 308; 2 C.C.C.(3d) 513, refd to. [paras. 18, 66].

R. v. Graveline (R.), [2006] 1 S.C.R. 609; 347 N.R. 268; 2006 SCC 16, refd to. [para. 35].

R. v. Gagnon (L.), [2006] 1 S.C.R. 621; 347 N.R. 355; 2006 SCC 17, refd to. [para. 36].

R. v. Davis (G.N.), [1999] 3 S.C.R. 759; 248 N.R. 44; 182 Nfld. & P.E.I.R. 78; 554 A.P.R. 78, refd to. [para. 36].

R. v. Stirling (B.J.) (2008), 371 N.R. 384; 251 B.C.A.C. 62; 420 W.A.C. 62; 2008 SCC 10, refd to. [para. 36].

R. v. Audet (Y.), [1996] 2 S.C.R. 171; 197 N.R. 172; 175 N.B.R.(2d) 81; 446 A.P.R. 81, refd to. [para. 37].

R. v. Skalbania (N.M.), [1997] 3 S.C.R. 995; 220 N.R. 349; 99 B.C.A.C. 81; 162 W.A.C. 81, refd to. [para. 37].

R. v. Ewanchuk (S.B.), [1999] 1 S.C.R. 330; 235 N.R. 323; 232 A.R. 1; 195 W.A.C. 1, refd to. [para. 37].

R. v. International Association of Bridge, Structural, Ornamental and Reinforcing Iron Workers, Local 771, [2005] 3 S.C.R. 425; 341 N.R. 357; 275 Sask.R. 1; 365 W.A.C. 1, refd to. [para. 37].

R. v. McIntosh (B.B.), [1995] 1 S.C.R. 686; 178 N.R. 161; 79 O.A.C. 81; 95 C.C.C.(3d) 481, refd to. [para. 43].

R. v. Beatty (J.R.) (2008), 371 N.R. 119; 251 B.C.A.C. 7; 420 W.A.C. 7; 2008 SCC 5, refd to. [para. 44].

R. v. Creighton, [1993] 3 S.C.R. 3; 157 N.R. 1; 65 O.A.C. 321, refd to. [para. 44].

R. v. Roberts (E.W.) (2004), 346 A.R. 325; 320 W.A.C. 325; 2004 ABCA 114, affd. [2005] 1 S.C.R. 22; 329 N.R. 8; 363 A.R. 26; 343 W.A.C. 26, refd to. [para. 46].

R. v. Hebert (D.M.), [1996] 2 S.C.R. 272; 197 N.R. 277; 77 B.C.A.C. 1; 126 W.A.C. 1, refd to. [para. 46].

R. v. Humaid (A.A.) (2006), 210 O.A.C. 68; 208 C.C.C.(3d) 43 (C.A.), leave to appeal refused (2006), 361 N.R. 389; 227 O.A.C. 398 (S.C.C.), refd to. [para. 52].

R. v. Van Dongen, [2005] EWCA Crim 1728, refd to. [para. 52].

R. v. Mohammed, [2005] EWCA Crim 1880, refd to. [para. 52].

Jersey (Attorney General) v. Holley, [2005] UKPC 23; 341 N.R. 285, refd to. [para. 52].

R. v. Seyed-Fatemi (M.) (2003), 185 B.C.A.C. 280; 303 W.A.C. 280; 177 C.C.C.(3d) 231; 2003 BCCA 439, refd to. [para. 55].

R. v. Hill, [1986] 1 S.C.R. 313; 68 N.R. 161; 17 O.A.C. 33, refd to. [para. 56].

R. v. Flegel (D.R.) (2005), 197 O.A.C. 57; 196 C.C.C.(3d) 146 (C.A.), refd to. [para. 57].

R. v. Nieto (R.S.) (2007), 214 Man.R.(2d) 307; 395 W.A.C. 307; 222 C.C.C.(3d) 510; 2007 MBCA 82, leave to appeal refused (2008), 385 N.R.  397 (S.C.C.), refd to. [para. 57].

R. v. D.W., [1991] 1 S.C.R. 742; 122 N.R. 277; 46 O.A.C. 352, refd to. [para. 57].

R. v. Lees (P.D.) (2001), 148 B.C.A.C. 253; 243 W.A.C. 253; 156 C.C.C.(3d) 421; 2001 BCCA 94, leave to appeal refused (2001), 275 N.R. 391; 161 B.C.A.C. 160; 263 W.A.C. 160 (S.C.C.), refd to. [para. 61].

R. v. Nahar (D.S.) (2004), 193 B.C.A.C. 217; 316 W.A.C. 217; 181 C.C.C.(3d) 449; 2004 BCCA 77, refd to. [para. 62].

R. v. Kent (P.S.) (2005), 212 B.C.A.C. 98; 350 W.A.C. 98; 196 C.C.C.(3d) 528; 2005 BCCA 238, refd to. [para. 64].

R. v. Point (D.L.) (2003), 327 A.R. 96; 296 W.A.C. 96 (C.A.), refd to. [para. 66].

R. v. Cinous (J.), [2002] 2 S.C.R. 3; 285 N.R. 1; 2002 SCC 29, refd to. [para. 66].

R. v. Fontaine (J.), [2004] 1 S.C.R. 702; 318 N.R. 371; 18 C.R.(6th) 203; 2004 SCC 27, refd to. [para. 66].

R. v. Reilly, [1984] 2 S.C.R. 396; 55 N.R. 274; 6 O.A.C. 88, refd to. [para. 68].

R. v. Willis (R.-A.) (2007), 224 O.A.C. 159; 2007 ONCA 365, refd to. [para. 72].

R. v. Merasty (C.E.) (1999), 189 Sask.R. 111; 216 W.A.C. 111; 30 C.R.(5th) 274 (C.A.), leave to appeal refused (2000), 264 N.R. 195; 203 Sask.R. 106; 240 W.A.C. 106 (S.C.C.), refd to. [para. 73].

R. v. Parent (R.), [2001] 1 S.C.R. 761; 268 N.R. 372, refd to. [para. 75].

R. v. Stone (B.T.), [1999] 2 S.C.R. 290; 239 N.R. 201; 123 B.C.A.C. 1; 201 W.A.C. 1, refd to. [para. 80].

R. v. Daviault (H.), [1994] 3 S.C.R. 63; 173 N.R. 1; 64 Q.A.C. 81, refd to. [para. 80].

Statutes Noticed:

Criminal Code, R.S.C. 1985, c. C-46, sect. 232(2) [para. 4].

Authors and Works Noticed:

Canadian Judicial Council, For Lawyers and Judges, Jury Instructions, generally [para. 48 et seq.].

Power, Helen, Provocation and Culture, [2006] Crim. L. Rev. 871, generally [para. 52].

Counsel:

S.D. Hughson, Q.C., for the appellant;

P.J. Royal, Q.C., for the respondent.

This appeal was heard on March 5, 2008, by Hunt and Watson, JJ.A., and Hillier, J.(ad hoc), of the Alberta Court of Appeal. The decision of the court was rendered on June 2, 2008, when the following reasons were filed at Edmonton, Alberta:

Hunt, J.A. (Hillier, J.(ad hoc), concurring) - see paragraphs 1 to 19;

Watson, J.A. - see paragraphs 20 to 82.

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5 practice notes
  • R. v. Tran, 2010 SCC 58
    • Canada
    • Supreme Court (Canada)
    • November 26, 2010
    ...13 Oxford J. Legal Stud. 421. APPEAL from a judgment of the Court of Appeal of Alberta (Hunt and Watson JJ.A. and Hillier J. (ad hoc)), 2008 ABCA 209, 91 Alta. L.R. (4th) 113 , 432 A.R. 234 , 424 W.A.C. 234 , 58 C.R. (6th) 246 , [2008] 9 W.W.R. 431 , [2008] A.J. No. 587 (QL), 2008 Car......
  • R. v. Tran (T.K.), (2010) 409 N.R. 1 (SCC)
    • Canada
    • Canada (Federal) Supreme Court (Canada)
    • May 13, 2010
    ...assault. The Crown appealed. The main issue was provocation. The Alberta Court of Appeal allowed the appeal, in a decision reported at 432 A.R. 234; 424 W.A.C. 234 , substituted a verdict of guilty of second degree murder, and returned the matter to the trial judge for re-sentencing. The a......
  • R. v. Tran (T.K.), (2010) 493 A.R. 123 (SCC)
    • Canada
    • Canada (Federal) Supreme Court (Canada)
    • May 13, 2010
    ...assault. The Crown appealed. The main issue was provocation. The Alberta Court of Appeal allowed the appeal, in a decision reported at 432 A.R. 234; 424 W.A.C. 234 , substituted a verdict of guilty of second degree murder, and returned the matter to the trial judge for re-sentencing. The a......
  • R. v. Giorgi (D.), 2015 ABQB 60
    • Canada
    • Court of Queen's Bench of Alberta (Canada)
    • January 8, 2015
    ...2006 SCC 9, refd to. [para. 53]. R. v. Bourgeault (R.J.) (2014), 597 A.R. 400; 2014 ABQB 654, refd to. [para. 53]. R. v. Tran (T.K.) (2008), 432 A.R. 234; 424 W.A.C. 234; 2008 ABCA 209, affd. (2010), 409 N.R. 1; 493 A.R. 123; 502 W.A.C. 123; 2010 SCC 58, refd to. [para. Michael S. Gunther, ......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
7 cases
  • R. v. Tran, 2010 SCC 58
    • Canada
    • Supreme Court (Canada)
    • November 26, 2010
    ...13 Oxford J. Legal Stud. 421. APPEAL from a judgment of the Court of Appeal of Alberta (Hunt and Watson JJ.A. and Hillier J. (ad hoc)), 2008 ABCA 209, 91 Alta. L.R. (4th) 113 , 432 A.R. 234 , 424 W.A.C. 234 , 58 C.R. (6th) 246 , [2008] 9 W.W.R. 431 , [2008] A.J. No. 587 (QL), 2008 Car......
  • R. v. Tran (T.K.), (2010) 409 N.R. 1 (SCC)
    • Canada
    • Canada (Federal) Supreme Court of Canada
    • May 13, 2010
    ...assault. The Crown appealed. The main issue was provocation. The Alberta Court of Appeal allowed the appeal, in a decision reported at 432 A.R. 234; 424 W.A.C. 234 , substituted a verdict of guilty of second degree murder, and returned the matter to the trial judge for re-sentencing. The a......
  • R. v. Tran (T.K.), (2010) 493 A.R. 123 (SCC)
    • Canada
    • Canada (Federal) Supreme Court of Canada
    • May 13, 2010
    ...assault. The Crown appealed. The main issue was provocation. The Alberta Court of Appeal allowed the appeal, in a decision reported at 432 A.R. 234; 424 W.A.C. 234 , substituted a verdict of guilty of second degree murder, and returned the matter to the trial judge for re-sentencing. The a......
  • R. v. Giorgi (D.), 2015 ABQB 60
    • Canada
    • Court of Queen's Bench of Alberta (Canada)
    • January 8, 2015
    ...2006 SCC 9, refd to. [para. 53]. R. v. Bourgeault (R.J.) (2014), 597 A.R. 400; 2014 ABQB 654, refd to. [para. 53]. R. v. Tran (T.K.) (2008), 432 A.R. 234; 424 W.A.C. 234; 2008 ABCA 209, affd. (2010), 409 N.R. 1; 493 A.R. 123; 502 W.A.C. 123; 2010 SCC 58, refd to. [para. Michael S. Gunther, ......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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