Arrested by the police and the Crown Attorney is not consenting to your release? Securing one’s freedom in the most expedited manner is the most important step after an arrest.  Everyone that is arrested is presumed innocent until proven guilty.  With that presumption of innocence, our legal system, for most charges, allows those that have been arrested to appear in court for a Show Cause Hearing (Bail Hearing) within as little as 24 hours of an arrest presuming there is court-time available for such a hearing.

The Bail Hearing is a judicial proceeding whereby the Justice of the Peace determines if a person charged with a criminal offence should be detained in jail as they await a trial or a resolution-court.  A Bail Hearing can be as little as an hour for the less serious charges or may proceed for days for the more serious and complex charges.  Notwithstanding a section 524 Arrest, for most charges an accused is presumed to be allegeable to be released from custody unless the Crown Attorney can “show cause” for the person’s detention in jail – that means that the Crown Attorney has to “show cause” why a person’s freedom ought to be taken away although the person remains innocent of the charge until found guilty by a Judge.

To ensure that a Bail Hearing secures a person’s freedom, a viable plan must be presented to the Justice of Peace during the course of the Bail Hearing.  The plan must cover the concerns which may be raised by the Crown Attorney during the Bail Hearing.  The Crown Attorney’s concerns are found in section 515 (10) (a), 515 (10) (b) and 515 (10) (c) of the Criminal Code of Canada.

In most cases a “Surety” will be the essential element of “the plan”.  A Surety is a person that knows the accused and is willing to supervise the conditions of their release as per the order of the Court.  The Surety may be a family member, a friend, or a person from the community.  The Surety plays a vital role as they are trusted by the court to ensure that the accused attends court and complies with any court conditions.

If you or a loved one is ever arrested, make sure you call a lawyer in order to assist you in every step of the procedure and to ensure that you have your freedom while you await your trial or resolution court.



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