Articles

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Why is Canada’s Crime Rate Falling?

Konrad Bongard, freelance columnist for Pardon Applications of Canada, explores the trend of decreasing crime rates in Canada and analyzes the varying opinions as to the cause. In 2012, the rate of reported crime in Canada fell for the eleventh subsequent year.  And everyone seems to have an opinion on why. One popular theory, which…

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From the Clumsy Crooks File: What Were They Thinking?

Maybe if the following people understood the implications of a criminal record and how profoundly it can affect their lives, they would not have been so, ah … careless (we’re being kind) in perpetrating their crimes. Stealing Trucks is Exhausting Work – Two men were arrested after police stopped to check out a suspicious truck…

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Report: Canada’s Bail System Costing Money & Imprisoning Innocent

Pegah Memarpour, freelance columnist for Pardon Applications of Canada, explores recommendations on improving Canada’s bail system based on a recent report by the Canadian Civil Liberties Association. The 2014 report titled “Set Up to Fail: Bail and the Revolving Door of Pretrial Detention”by the Canadian Civil Liberties Association, documents the use of pre-trial detention and…

Violence

Does Violence in Media Cause Violent Crime?

Konrad Bongard, freelance columnist for Pardon Applications of Canada, explores the controversial debate of whether violence in today’s media leads to violent crime. The British Prime Minister Harold Macmillan once said that “We have not overthrown the divine right of kings to fall down for the divine right of experts.” Unfortunately, in the ongoing debate…

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Bill C-32: Harmful to Victims AND Offenders?

Pegah Memarpour, freelance columnist for Pardon Applications of Canada, explores the newly legislated Bill C-32, and suggests that many experts and victim advocacy groups feel the changes are not enough. A “historical legislation” that puts victims at the “heart of the justice system” is what Harper proclaims the new Bill C-32 will be for Canadians…

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Impaired Driving in Canada: The Real Numbers

Pegah Memarpour, freelance columnist for Pardon Applications of Canada, explores the truth behind impaired driving numbers in Canada, and notes that many Canadians should remember the biggest deterrent is the non-legal consequences that result from drinking and driving. Impaired driving incidents (both accidents and roadside stops) have been on the rise in Canada as police…

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Clogged Courts Interfere With the Delivery of Justice in Canada

Late in 1983, Peter Belmont, an entrepreneur in the business of supplying exotic dancers to establishments in the Toronto area, met a few business acquaintances in a local tavern. Elijah Asikov, Ralph Hussey, Samuel Gugliotta and Edward Melo, also entrepreneurs in the same business as Belmont, wanted 50% payments from him in exchange for being…

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Is Canada Over-Policed?

Every now and then, when you’re driving in your car and all seems safe and clear, do you like to step on the gas pedal, just for a little rush of speed and excitement? If you do, you are probably amazed at how often that simple act seems to make a police car suddenly appear…

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2 Divergent Reports about the Status of Crime in Canada

Konrad Bongard, freelance columnist for Pardon Applications of Canada, explores two reports about crime in Canada including the recently released StatsCan report for 2013, and an even more recent report by the Canadian Association of Civil Liberties which suggests major issues in Canada’s bail system. Two very divergent reports about crime in Canada have dominated…

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Increased Cost of Pardons a Disservice to Canadians

Konrad Bongard, freelance columnist for Pardon Applications of Canada, explores the recent increase in the government’s submission fee to apply for a Pardon (Record Suspension), and suggests that the rate increase will not represent the intended net economic benefit. Before the Tories passed Bill-C23A, which increased the government’s submission fee of a pardon application from…

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Have a Fun & Successful Vacation – Regardless of Your Criminal Record

Pegah Memarpour, freelance columnist for Pardon Applications of Canada, explores how Canadians are caught off guard by strict border crossing regulations, and what can be done to ensure family vacations and travel are successful. Summertime is the hot bed for travelling: families go on vacations, couples take weekend getaways, and many take business trips.  In…

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What’s Changed Since the Prince of Pot Last Saw Freedom?

Do you remember Pierre Trudeau’s 1980 campaign promises about decriminalizing marijuana possession? If so, you’re probably 40-something today (OK, late 30s). Back in 1980, you wouldn’t have dreamed this much time would pass and pot possession would still be a criminal activity (except for medicinal use) across Canada,. Indeed, in the 34 years since the…

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The Godfather? More Like The “Gone-father”…

Konrad Bongard, freelance columnist for Pardon Applications of Canada, explores the decentralization of organized crime, and suggests that if the Canadian government seeks to seriously combat organized crime in the 21st century, it will have to considerably revise its law enforcement strategies. Traditionally in American media, the Italian mafia has been portrayed as top-down, hierarchal…

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How Bill C-24 Could Have Revoked Nelson Mandela’s Honourary Canadian Citizenship

Konrad Bongard, freelance columnist for Pardon Applications of Canada, explores the recently legislated Bill C-24, and suggests that the Supreme Court would do well to think twice about giving the Harper government widespread powers to revoke Canadian citizenship. On June 19th, the Conservative government’s new Bill C-24, the Strengthening Canadian Citizenship Act, received royal assent….

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Can I Still Get a Pardon?

Pegah Memarpour, freelance columnist for Pardon Applications of Canada, explores recent legislative changes to the eligibility criteria for a pardon, now known as a “record suspension”. Over recent years there has been a significant amount of attention given to the plummeting pardon application rates, and some major changes to the laws surrounding them.  This has…

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Bill C-36: Examining the Sex Trade Workers Debate

Pegah Memarpour, freelance columnist for Pardon Applications of Canada, explores controversial changes purposed by the Conservative government with Bill C-36, and offers a look at both sides of the sex trade worker debate in Canada. The act of prostitution has always been legal under Canadian law, however, over the last year there has been significant…

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8 Great Canadian Prison Escapes

In light of the recent helicopter escape from the Orsainville Detention Centre on June 7, Pegah Memarpour, freelance columnist for Pardon Applications of Canada, explores 8 great Canadian prison escapes from the past. Daring helicopter escapes, guard assisted breakouts, or scaling prison walls. We’ve seen it all when it comes to prison movies and television…

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Is Distracted Driving the New Drunk Driving?

Konrad Bongard, freelance columnist for Pardon Applications of Canada, explores the recent phenomena of distracted driving, and suggests that Canada may want to invest more energy into the education and enforcement of distracted driving offenders. Canadian philosopher Marshall McLuhan once said…  “We look at the present through a rear-view mirror.”  Is it possible that Canada…

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Prisoner First… Patient Second

Pegah Memarpour, freelance columnist for Pardon Applications of Canada, explores a significant strain on the health care system for inmates in Canada, and suggests that those behind bars may be subject to a “prisoner first” mentality when it comes to our most basic human right. Having access to health care is seen as a basic…