Law Times

Aug 20, 2012

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COUNSEL COMPLAINT Lawyer says Crown wasted $125K $4.00 • Vol. 23, No. 26 Covering ontario's legal sCene • www.lawtimesnews.Com L AW TIMES P4 How to spruce up your LinkedIn profile P7 T BY SIOBHAN McCLELLAND For Law Times a holding pattern as he waits for Public Safety Minister Vic Toews to decide on his return to Canada to complete the remainder of his eight- year prison sentence. With Toews taking his time and public opinion divided over whether Khadr should return to Canada or remain in Guantana- mo Bay, lawyers John Norris and Brydie Bethell are putting political and legal pressure on the government to make a decision. The connection with Afghanistan and the al- hey are the two Toronto-based crimi- nal defence lawyers representing the only Canadian still imprisoned in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Their client, Omar Khadr, is stuck in leged link to Al Qaeda are factors Norris believes the government is using "to justify the hard line that it is taking without looking at all of the cir- cumstances of the case. every international body has condemned Cana- da' Canada today that involves the kinds of issues that [this case] does," says Bethell. "In my view, Omar is a Canadian citizen who s stance in this matter. "There' s probably no other case going on in has been abused at every turn and the Canadian government has failed him so incredibly. She adds: "I've always believed we're the good guys in Canada and I have been profoundly " See Pair, page 5 John Norris and Brydie Bethell first met at a meeting organized by Human Rights Watch. Nicholson rebuffs CBA call for legal aid funding review F 'We've maintained our funding levels even in this time of restraint,' says Rob Nicholson. Photo: Gail J. Cohen BY MICHAEL McKIERNAN Law Times ederal Justice Minister Rob Nicholson defended his government' ing at his annual Canadian Bar Association grilling while rebuff- ing calls from the organization for a review of federal funding. At the CBA' ence, Nicholson told the crowd of lawyers gathered at the Vancouver Convention Centre on Aug. 13 that the Conservative government has boosted federal funding for criminal legal aid to $111 million from $81 million during its time in power. "There' s annual confer- s a total commitment of to criminal legal aid fund- s approach $560 million to the legal aid sys- tem," he said. "It' CBA's council passed a resolution the conference, the of government. We've maintained our funding levels even in this time of restraint." Earlier at s a difficult time for all levels urging the government to "address the crisis in legal aid funding as a systemic issue that jeopardizes the efficiency and effectiveness of the entire justice system." The resolu- tion also demanded a "compre- hensive review" of federal funding for criminal legal aid. On Aug. 11, resolution spon- sor Dan MacRury, chairman of the CBA' tion, told the council that aſter tak- ing inflation into account, federal s national criminal justice sec- funding increases were essentially flat. He noted as well that the recent- ly enacted omnibus crime bill would soon cause a spike in demand for le- gal aid services. "Clearly, we have a situation where there will be more people on remand requiring duty counsel and basically will strain provincial legal aid plans in such a way that it will cut into the poorly funded civ- il system that we have at this time, MacRury said. "It' " work, we need enhanced funding to the criminal legal aid to ensure fundamental justice in our coun- try." The CBA's attention now turns to Saskatoon, which will host next s clear that for the system to Photo: Laura Pedersen " He notes that practically ntitled-4 1 SOCIAL MEDIA FOCUS ON Pensions Law P8 August 20, 2012 12-03-20 10:44 A Khadr's lawyers no strangers to int'l cases Legal duo have been involved in infamous matter since 2006 See CBA, page 5 OBA_LT_Aug20_12.indd 1 12-08-13 11:15 AM Pm #40762529

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