Monday, March 2, 2015

Canadian sexual assault charge dismissed for lack of military nexus

In R v. Thibault, 2015 CM 1001, a Standing Court Martial presided over by Colonel Mario Dutil, Chief Military Judge, declined jurisdiction to try the infantry corporal accused of sexual assault of a female corporal – a member of the Military Police - in August 2011 in a private residence.

This decision  followed the ruling made by the Court Martial Appeal Court of Canada in Moriarity v. Canada, 2014 CMAC 1, which held that military prosecutions before military tribunals can only take place when the requirement for military nexus is satisfied. In the absence of a such a military nexus, an accused's constitutional right to a jury trial before a civilian court should be respected. Of note, an appeal of the Moriarity case is scheduled to be heard before the Supreme Court of Canada on May 12, 2015.

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