CRIMINAL COURT DELAY AND THE CHARTER: THE USE AND MISUSE OF SOCIAL FACTS IN JUDICIAL POLICY MAKING
AbstractAn important element of the Supreme Court of Canada's recent constitutional judgments on criminal court delay was the use of quantitative data and social facts. However, use of this evidence was deficient in significant and diverse ways. In the Askov case, the court went beyond the evidence submitted by the parties, gathered its own data, but failed to test its conclusions against the earlier evidence. Later, in the Morin case, the court placed too much reliance on the adversary process, accepting invalid evidence that undermined its conclusions. In both Askov and Morin, court processes led to ineffective or incorrect use of material that, properly used, could have improved both the results and the reasons in these cases.
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