Bail Reviews

Pursuant to s. 525(1) CCC where an accused is charged with an indictable offence and detained pending trial, he is entitled to a bail review unless he is also detained on another matter. The ‘person having custody’ of him is required to apply to a judge to fix a date for hearing after 90 days from the date of the detention order. The purpose of the hearing is to determine whether the accused should be released from custody. A central consideration for the judge is whether the Crown has been responsible for the delay; however, the same considerations apply regarding primary, secondary and tertiary grounds. Under s. 525(9) the judge is also in a position to direct the Crown to expedite the trial process.

Where the Crown does not bring the matter for review, the accused’s continue detention is unlawful and he is entitled to be released on an application for habeus corpus. (See Ferreira (1981), 58CCC(2d)147 (BCCA) for a general discussion: the delay must be so unreasonable that it outweighs the public interest in the accused’s continued detention and the review is premised on any unreasonable delay in bringing the matter to trial.. Of note, although any delay related to the timing of the review is significant, it is a reverse onus situation and the basic considerations continue to be whether the delay is oppressive and whether the accused is eligible for release.

A bail review under s. 520, on the other hand, is in the nature of an appeal of a detention order.

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