CASE LAW - Gainder v The Minister of Justice

BC Courts Coat of ArmsMandeep Gainder, a novice driver, was discovered sitting in his idling car which emitted a strong odour of marihuana from the passenger compartment. Constable Troughton performed a Standardized Field Sobriety Test on Mr. Gainder who admitted smoking the drug and failed the test. A 24 hour prohibition for drug use was issued by Constable Earle. This suspension was not disputed.

The Superintendent issued a Notice of Intention to Prohibit to Mr. Gainder because of his novice status and the 24 hour prohibition. He asked the Superintendent to review the Notice of Intent and it was upheld on that review.

Mr. Gainder subsequently asked the court to stay the 24 hour prohibition. This case discusses the grounds for staying a suspension of this nature and explains why Mr. Justice Weatherill refused to do so.




What a total waste of the Court's and every one else's time!

Not necessarily!

Apart from the fact that we must have a system that allows anybody who has received some kind of ticket, infraction, penalty or whatever to have the chance to appeal it, I think this case goes further.

Why? Because, unless I'm mistaken, we're witnessing a situation where the driver has not been charged with an offence - and this would have been heavy-duty, Criminal Code impairment, on the basis of a suspicious smell; any lawyer would rip that one to shreds due to the lack of evidence - and yet, said driver has suffered considerable setback, not just a slap on the wrist.

For one thing, at the time that the 24-hour suspension was issued, his vehicle was probably towed and impounded, which would not have been cheap.

But more importantly, as a Class 7 Novice driver, the Prohibition would have irrevocably re-started his 2-year mandatory waiting period (including C7 restrictions) commencing after the six months' Suspension - when there will also be heavy fees to pay in order to do so - before he can even apply for his Class 5 license (another driving test to get that), and thus exit Graduated Licensing.

I think the cop handled this very intelligently and effectively, given the present driving laws.

And the judge in this case may have set a very important precedent, and it won't go un-noticed.

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