Special Prosecutions (Sensitive and Complex Prosecutions)

Special Prosecutions (Sensitive and Complex Prosecutions)

DATE: May, 20, 2008

UPDATED: April 3, 2009

SUBJECT: TO CREATE A PRACTICE WITH RESPECT TO SENSITIVE AND COMPLEX PROSECUTIONS

BACKGROUND:

Generally, carriage of all prosecutions and the provision of all pre-charge advice is or will be alleged to have occurred.  This general rule is subject to a number of qualifications and exceptions, including those noted below.

PRACTICE:

  1. Crown prosecutors with the Special Prosecutions Branch shall have carriage of all prosecutions and/or pre-trial proceedings, and shall be responsible for the provision of all advice sought by an investigative agency, in respect of matters that fit within the following classes:
    1. significant cases involving securities, commercial, and corporate criminal conduct of a complex nature, especially those in which it is contemplated that investigators will require substantial pre-charge advice and pre-charge approval;
    2. cases involving criminal activity spanning multiple jurisdictions (province-wide, inter-provincial, or international);
    3. cases in which there is a major involvement of a government agency or department.  (The term major involvement includes for example a substantial fraud on a government agency or department that appears to suggest that administrative practices in that agency or department should be changed, or a case involving a senior government official.  It does not include the fairly routine matters, such as a claimant defrauding the Workers' Compensation Board or another government department);
    4. applications for mutual legal assistance as described in the Mutual Legal Assistance and Criminal Matters Act, R.S., 1985, c. 30, (4th Supp.) and in the practice memo Mutual Legal Assistance;
    5. application for warrants and orders pertaining to the proceeds of crime as described in Part XX.2 of the Criminal Code and in the practice memo Proceeds of Crime;
    6. cases involving the following classes of persons:
      1. members of the Executive Council, and members of the Legislative Assembly,
      2. Deputy Ministers,
      3. members of the judiciary (all levels),
      4. all public officials where the offence is alleged to have arisen in the course of their employment,
      5. senior managers employed in the administration of justice in the course of their employment, and
      6. members of the Law Society of Alberta where the offence is alleged to have arisen in the course of their professional practice or employment.
      7. cases directed to the Special Prosecutions Branch by the Assistant Deputy Minister (Criminal Justice).  e.g. where a police investigation is requested as a result of a complaint made directly to the Attorney General by a citizen, by a member of the Legislative Assembly or by someone in another government department.
  2. Crown prosecutors with the Special Prosecutions Branch shall provide assistance as requested with respect to the criteria, procedures and documentation applicable to the determination of whether extradition is possible and in the preparation for the extradition application, as described in the practice memorandum Extradition and Rendition.
  3. Upon the initiation of any such prosecution or litigation, or upon an investigative agency contacting the Crown for the purpose of obtaining pre-charge advice in respect of its investigation of any such offences or issues, the matters referred to above shall be immediately referred to the Director of the Special Prosecutions Branch.
  4. Crown prosecutors who are not members of the Special Prosecutions Branch may, with the consent of the Director of the Special Prosecutions Branch, have carriage of any such case or matter and may provide any pre-charge advice that has been sought, but when doing so, they are accountable to, and under the direction of, the Director of the Special Prosecutions Branch.