February 09, 2018
Duval Hesler, Morissette, Hilton, Gagnon, Vauclair
Appeal from a judgment of the Superior Court ordering a stay of the proceedings against the respondent. Dismissed, with dissenting reasons.
The appellant appeals from a judgment ordering a stay of proceedings due to unreasonable delays. Some preliminary issues have been raised, however, because the respondent has already been deported to Sri Lanka in accordance with an order to this end. Counsel for the two parties raised the fact that, despite this, the appeal was not moot and exceptional circumstances justified a judgment on the merits.
This appeal does not address any unique or special issues that would absolutely require a judgment on the merits. On the contrary, the questions raised concern a judicial review instead and have already been, or may be, decided in other files. Moreover, according to the analysis of the applicable case law, the fact that the respondent was accused of the second degree murder of his wife is not, in itself, a valid reason for the Court to exercise its discretionary power. R v. Smith (S.C. Can., 2004-03-04), 2004 SCC 14, SOQUIJ AZ-50223889, J.E. 2004-592,  1 S.C.R. 385 clearly established that, even if a court retains jurisdiction to proceed, in the interest of justice, it should do so sparingly. What is more, the federal authorities chose not to wait for the outcome on the merits of this case before deporting the respondent from Canada. This situation indicates the unlikelihood that the federal government could begin extradition proceedings should a new trial be ordered. Thus, there is very little chance that the respondent would be present for the subsequent proceedings. Consequently, the appeal is moot and no exceptional circumstances have been shown that would justify a judgment on the merits.
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