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A. Captan
A. Captan, Lawyer
Category: Canada Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 245
Experience:  I am a criminal lawyer, practicing in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
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I was charged with assault but it was consentual and I did not

Customer Question

I was charged with sexual assault but it was consentual and I did not do the things she said we met on an online dating website she was making up things that happened as well too
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Canada Criminal Law
Expert:  A. Captan replied 2 years ago.
Hello: Sorry to hear about the sexual assault charge; I understand that this can be a very confusing and stressful process, especially if it's the first time you've been charged criminally. I am a criminal defence lawyer and can try and assist you with your inquiry. I will provide you some general information about the court process in general and the offence of sexual assault in particular; if you have a follow up question, feel free to ask. Starting with the offence of sexual assault, in order to be found guilty, the Crown must prove that there was intentional and non-consensual touching that took place which was of a sexual nature. This must be proven beyond a doubt at a criminal trial. In short, if a court were to find that the touching which took place was consensual, that would be a complete "defence" to the charge. Alternatively, if the Court finds that the accused had an honest, but mistaken, reasonable belief that the touching which took place was consensual, that would also give rise to a defence. Sexual assault cases generally involve Courts assessing the credibility and reliability of evidence presented, including evidence of the accused and evidence of the complainant. If the complainant in your case, as you say, made things up, a lawyer on your behalf would attempt to cross-examine her to establish inconsistencies with her version of events, and other problems with it. In terms of the court process, theses types of cases can take significant periods of time to complete and are generally slow moving. If the Crown proceeds by "summary conviction", then a trial in the Ontario Court of Justice could take upwards to a year. If the Crown proceeds by indictment, a trial could take around 2 years to get to. At your first court appearance, the accused is normally provided "disclosure", which is essentially the evidence that the police have compiled in the case, and have turned over to the Crown. As a defendant, you have a constitutional right to receive this disclosure. The reason it's necessary is that you need it to prepare a defence. To prepare a defence, you need to have knowledge of what exactly the complainant is alleging happened. In sexual assault cases, the complainant would have generally provided a video recorded statement in which s/he summarizes what took place (in their mind). It is important that you retain a criminal lawyer to represent you with a case like this, for several reasons. Here is a list of a few: a) If the Crown proceeds by indictment, there is a mandatory minimum one year jail sentence;b) If you are found guilty of the offence, there is an automatic entry onto a sexual offender database for at least 10 years;c) If your are found guilty, you risk not only a criminal record for life, but also jail time. The amount of jail would depend on the nature of the offence I hope all of this helps. If you've found it did, please rate me positively.

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