R. v. Tran (V.P.), (2001) 149 O.A.C. 120 (CA)

JudgeWeiler, Austin and Borins, JJ.A.
CourtCourt of Appeal (Ontario)
Case DateAugust 01, 2001
JurisdictionOntario
Citations(2001), 149 O.A.C. 120 (CA);2001 CanLII 5555 (ON CA);55 OR (3d) 161;156 CCC (3d) 1;44 CR (5th) 12;[2001] CarswellOnt 2706;[2001] OJ No 3056 (QL);149 OAC 120;14 MVR (4th) 1

R. v. Tran (V.P.) (2001), 149 O.A.C. 120 (CA)

MLB headnote and full text

Temp. Cite: [2001] O.A.C. TBEd. AU.006

Her Majesty The Queen (respondent) v. Vi Phuong Tran (appellant)

(C35121)

Indexed As: R. v. Tran (V.P.)

Ontario Court of Appeal

Weiler, Austin and Borins, JJ.A.

August 1, 2001.

Summary:

Tran was convicted on a number of charges arising out of a motor vehicle accident. He appealed, arguing that the trial judge failed to provide him with any significant assistance or guidance throughout the trial, and, in particular, that the trial judge failed to conduct an inquiry into the admissibility of evidence of his impairment.

The Ontario Court of Appeal allowed the appeal and ordered a new trial.

Civil Rights - Topic 8583

Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms - Practice - Who may raise Charter issues - After representing himself at trial, Tran was convicted on a number of charges arising out of a motor vehicle accident - Tran appealed, arguing that the trial judge erred by failing to conduct an inquiry into the admissibility of evidence of his impairment - The Ontario Court of Appeal agreed - Although Tran had consented to the taking of blood samples for medical purposes after the accident, the evidence failed to establish that he consented to their use for determining his blood/alcohol concentration - Rather, the evidence was obtained through a search warrant issued absent a sworn information - In these circumstances, it was incumbent upon the trial judge to conduct an inquiry to ascertain whether Tran's s. 8 Charter rights had been infringed and, if so, whether the impairment evidence should be excluded under s. 24(2) - By failing to conduct such an inquiry, the trial judge compromised the fairness of Tran's trial - See paragraphs 1 to 30.

Civil Rights - Topic 8586

Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms - Practice - Method of raising Charter issues - [See Civil Rights - Topic 8583 ].

Courts - Topic 589

Judges - Duties - To self-represented party - After representing himself at trial, Tran was convicted on a number of charges arising out of a motor vehicle accident - He appealed, arguing that the trial judge failed to provide him with any significant assistance or guidance throughout the trial - The Ontario Court of Appeal agreed - On review of the evidence, the court noted that the trial judge did little to assist Tran and the voir dires he conducted concerning the qualification of experts were questionable - Moreover, the trial judge failed to explain the course which the trial would take, knowing that Tran needed an interpreter and was ignorant of the most basic stages of a trial - Given these facts and the fact that the trial judge did not accept or reject Tran's evidence regarding the amount of alcohol he consumed and how it impacted on his driving, a new trial was warranted - See paragraphs 32 to 35.

Courts - Topic 589

Judges - Duties - To self-represented party - [See Civil Rights - Topic 8583 ].

Criminal Law - Topic 4294

Procedure - Trial judge - Duties and functions of - Where accused not represented (incl. representation by nonlawyer or agent) - [See first Courts - Topic 589 ].

Criminal Law - Topic 4298

Procedure - Trial judge - Duties and functions of - To exclude inadmissible evidence - [See Civil Rights - Topic 8583 ].

Criminal Law - Topic 4956

Appeals - Indictable offences - New trials - Grounds - Admission of evidence - [See Civil Rights - Topic 8583 ].

Cases Noticed:

R. v. Kienapple, [1975] 1 S.C.R. 729; 1 N.R. 322, refd to. [para. 3].

R. v. Rowbotham et al. (1988), 25 O.A.C. 321; 41 C.C.C.(3d) 1 (C.A.), refd to. [para. 22].

R. v. McGibbon (1988), 31 O.A.C. 10; 45 C.C.C.(3d) 334 (C.A.), refd to. [para. 22].

R. v. Littlejohn and Tirabasso (1978), 41 C.C.C.(2d) 161 (Ont. C.A.), refd to. [para. 23].

R. v. Taubler (1987), 20 O.A.C. 64 (C.A.), refd to. [para. 23].

R. v. Turlon (1989), 32 O.A.C. 396; 49 C.C.C.(3d) 186 (C.A.), refd to. [para. 23].

R. v. Dimmock (K.P.) (1996), 72 B.C.A.C. 114; 119 W.A.C. 114; 47 C.R.(4th) 120 (C.A.), refd to. [para. 24].

R. v. Travers (R.H.) (2001), 193 N.S.R.(2d) 263; 602 A.P.R. 263 (C.A.), refd to. [para. 25].

R. v. Arbour (1990), 4 C.R.R.(2d) 369 (Ont. C.A.), refd to. [para. 26].

R. v. Pohoretsky, [1987] 1 S.C.R. 945; 75 N.R. 1; 47 Man.R.(2d) 295, refd to. [para. 29].

R. v. Dyment, [1988] 2 S.C.R. 417; 89 N.R. 249; 73 Nfld. & P.E.I.R. 13; 229 A.P.R. 13, refd to. [para. 29].

R. v. Dersch (W.W.), [1993] 3 S.C.R. 768; 158 N.R. 375; 33 B.C.A.C. 269; 54 W.A.C. 269, refd to. [para. 29].

R. v. Borden (J.R.), [1994] 3 S.C.R. 145; 171 N.R. 1; 134 N.S.R.(2d) 321; 383 A.P.R. 321, refd to. [para. 29].

R. v. Stillman (W.W.D.), [1997] 1 S.C.R. 607; 209 N.R. 81; 185 N.B.R.(2d) 1; 472 A.P.R. 1, refd to. [para. 29].

R. v. Stellato (T.) (1993), 61 O.A.C. 217; 78 C.C.C.(3d) 380 (C.A.), affd. [1994] 2 S.C.R. 478; 168 N.R. 190; 72 O.A.C. 140, refd to. [para. 30].

Counsel:

Christopher D. Hicks, for the appellant;

Sandra Kingston, for the respondent.

This appeal was heard on May 11, 2001, before Weiler, Austin and Borins, JJ.A., of the Ontario Court of Appeal.

Borins, J.A., delivered the following judgment for the Court of Appeal which was released on August 1, 2001.

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