wrongful conviction

 

Reasons for judgment in the case of Henry v. BC (Attorney General) were released today.   This case involved the wrongful conviction of the plaintiff following a failure to provide adequate disclosure in his criminal trial.  As a result of the conviction the plaintiff spent 27 years in jail for the sexual assault.  After his innocence was proven he launched a civil claim seeking damages for his wrongful conviction.

Chief Justice Hinkson found that the plaintiff’s charter rights had been breached and awarded him $7.5 million for the breach as well as approximately $500,000 in special damages and loss of income.  It is a large sum of money but can any amount of money make up for spending 27 years behind bars for a crime that you did not commit?  This case and the wrongful conviction that led to it underscores the vital role that the rule of law plays in our society and how the charter rights which some may see as providing protection to criminals, act to protect us all from the devastating consequences of a wrongful termination.   The link above will take you to the full text of the decision.