Court delays one of several issues tackled by feds in tabled bill

Federal Liberals present massive bill, wide-spanning across several facets of the justice system

Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould announced this week that the federal Liberals have put forward new legislation aimed at overhauling the justice system.

Proposed changes include efforts to make juries “more representative” of the population, and to increase penalties for intimate partner violence.

“Our criminal justice system must be fair, equitable and just for all Canadians,” Wilson-Raybould said.

The massive bill, wide-spanning across several facets of the justice system, also includes proposed changed to the way failing to appear or breaching release conditions are handled, as well as reforming parts of the Criminal Code that have been found unconstitutional.

The bill notably also tackles court delays – a particular measure that could impact B.C. court rooms.

Advocates and officials have called for action to be taken by the provincial and federal governments for years, but most recently after murder charges against accused Surrey Six killer Jamie Bacon were stayed, 10 years after the fatal shooting left six people dead.

In 2016, the Supreme Court moved forward with setting limits for trials in the country, commonly referred to as the “Jordan decision,” linked to B.C. man Richard Jordan waited 49 months to be convicted from his arrest.

According to details, judges could have more discretion when it comes to offences such as breaching bail conditions in some cases.

With files from The Canadian Press


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