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Criminal Proceedings Rules of the Supreme Court of Newfoundland and Labrador (SI/2018-43)

Regulations are current to 2020-09-09 and last amended on 2018-07-01. Previous Versions

RULE 7Conferences Generally

Marginal note:Purpose and Application

  •  (1) This Rule applies to resolution conferences, pretrial conferences and case management conferences, the purposes of which are set out in rules 8.01, 9.01 and 10.01 respectively.

  • (2) Conferences under these Rules provide an opportunity for full and free discussion between the parties without prejudice to the rights of the parties in any proceedings which take place thereafter.

Marginal note:General

 Nothing in these Rules shall preclude a judge from conducting other informal conferences prior to trial in addition to the mandatory conferences provided for in subsection 625.1(2) of the Code.

Marginal note:Attendance

  •  (1) Unless otherwise ordered, conferences shall be attended by:

    • (a) counsel who will represent the accused at trial, or the accused if he or she is not represented by counsel; and

    • (b) the prosecutor who will appear at trial, or a senior prosecutor in charge of prosecutions.

  • (2) The prosecutor and counsel attending a conference shall:

    • (a) have carriage and authority of the case;

    • (b) be fully prepared;

    • (c) be fully acquainted with the factual and legal issues likely to arise at the conference; and

    • (d) have adequate instructions to discuss the resolution of and, to the extent reasonably possible, make decisions that bind the party relating to all issues that are likely to arise at the conference and, in the case of counsel for the accused, access to the accused in order to confirm instructions or receive additional instructions.

Marginal note:Documents

  •  (1) Parties shall outline their positions in the documents required by these Rules and shall not indicate “will advise”, “not as yet” or phrases of similar effect.

  • (2) If any party changes any position taken and recorded in any materials pursuant to these Rules, the party shall provide written notice of the change to the other parties and to the court immediately.

  • (3) Subrule (2) also applies to changes in position when

    • (a) the accused changes counsel;

    • (b) the accused, who had been self-represented, retains counsel; or

    • (c) the accused, who had been represented by counsel, ceases to be represented by counsel.

  • (4) Materials to be used during a conference shall be delivered to the court in a sealed envelope on which the following is printed:

    • (a) the court file number;

    • (b) the title of the proceeding;

    • (c) the name of the party filing the document;

    • (d) the date of the conference; and

    • (e) the type of conference for which the materials are filed (“resolution conference”, “pre-trial conference” or “case management conference” as the case may be).

  • (5) Subject to subrules 7.04(6) and 9.04(8), unless the parties consent or a judge otherwise orders, materials delivered to the court for use during a conference pursuant to these Rules shall not be placed in the court file of the proceeding to which they relate and shall not be disclosed to any trial judge who may thereafter try the case.

  • (6) Material which is part of a final disposition of a portion of the case may be presented and referred to in open court in relation to the disposition of that portion of the proceeding.

  • (7) At the end of the conference, any materials which are not ordered to be placed in the court file or disclosed to the trial judge shall be returned to the parties and the judge shall make a note in the court file accordingly.

Marginal note:Location and Procedure

  •  (1) Unless otherwise ordered, conferences shall be held in the judicial centre in which the indictment was filed.

  • (2) Unless otherwise ordered, conferences shall be held in the absence of the public.

  • (3) A conference held under subrule (2) shall be recorded and the recording thereof shall remain sealed unless a judge orders otherwise.

Marginal note:Specific Inquiries to be Made

 Judges presiding over conferences shall inquire into and discuss any matter that may promote a fair and expeditious hearing or disposition of the charges contained in the indictment.

Marginal note:Compellability of a Judge

 A judge who presided over a conference shall not be a compellable witness regarding any aspect of the conference.

Marginal note:Remote Conferencing

  •  (1) A judge may, if requested by one or more of the parties, direct that a conference be held wholly or partly by telephone conference call, video conference or any other form of electronic communication acceptable to the judge.

  • (2) Where there is a request to conduct a conference by telephone conference call, video conference or any other form of electronic communication, the judge may direct a party to make the necessary arrangements on such terms as are just and to give notice of those arrangements to all other parties and to the court.

RULE 8Resolution Conferences

Marginal note:Purpose of Resolution Conferences

  •  (1) A resolution conference is a meeting of the parties to fully and freely discuss, with judicial assistance, the possibility of the resolution of a case or one or more issues of fact or law and to expedite plea agreements.

  • (2) All discussions at a resolution conference shall remain confidential and without prejudice and shall not be referred to in subsequent applications or at the trial, except as ordered by a judge.

Marginal note:Time for Conducting Resolution Conferences

  •  (1) Unless otherwise ordered, a resolution conference ordered pursuant to rule 6.02(2) shall be held within 60 days following the day the indictment was filed with the court.

  • (2) Once the resolution conference has commenced, any party may withdraw at any time whereupon the resolution conference shall be terminated.

Marginal note:Scheduling Resolution Conferences

  •  (1) The date and time for the resolution conference shall be set by a judge at arraignment court.

  • (2) The judge at arraignment court shall consider whether a resolution conference is appropriate and accordingly either:

    • (a) set a date and time for a resolution conference; or

    • (b) dispense with the requirement to hold a resolution conference.

  • (3) A joint request for a particular judge to preside over the resolution conference may be made to a registry clerk and, if practicable, that judge will be assigned.

Marginal note:Documents to be Filed before Resolution Conferences

  •  (1) The prosecutor shall serve on the accused and file with the court at least seven days prior to the date of the resolution conference:

    • (a) a concise statement of facts which the prosecutor reasonably believes the Crown is able to prove;

    • (b) a list of mitigating and aggravating facts that remain in issue;

    • (c) a list of issues to be discussed at the resolution conference;

    • (d) the criminal record of the accused, if any;

    • (e) a copy of any expert reports that will be relied on by the prosecutor as part of its case or, if the reports are not then available, a statement of the experts consulted and an indication of the nature of the opinion that will or may be given; and

    • (f) the position of the prosecutor with respect to disposition.

  • (2) Each counsel shall serve on the prosecutor and, unless otherwise ordered, on every other accused and file with the court at least three days prior to the date of the resolution conference:

    • (a) a concise statement of any facts which the accused is, for the purpose of discussion at the resolution conference, prepared to acknowledge;

    • (b) a list of any additional issues for discussion at the resolution conference that are not included in the prosecutor’s list; and

    • (c) a copy of any expert reports that may be relied on by the accused or, if the reports are not then available, a statement of the experts consulted and an indication of the nature of the opinion that will or may be given.

  • (3) At the same time the party files his or her materials under subrules (1) or (2), a party may also file with the court a legal brief containing a concise analysis of the law in support of that party’s position.

  • (4) Unless otherwise ordered, an accused who is not represented by counsel is not required to file the materials set out in subrule (2).

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