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Charged With a Sexual Assault? Remain Calm. A Criminal Defense Lawyer Will Guide You Through the Next Steps. | Domestic Assault Lawyer Newmarket

Criminal Defence Lawyer, Newmarket

Sexual assault is viewed with considerable severity by the Crown. If you are facing charges of sexual assault, it’s important to remain calm and get in touch with an experienced Newmarket sexual assault defence lawyer as soon as possible to help you get the justice you deserve. 

Semyonov Law’s team of experienced lawyers have extensive expertise gleaned through years of representing clients at all court levels. We work around the clock to prepare you for the prosecutor’s questioning and strengthen your defence in court. 

This article will explore what sexual assault is and what potential charges you can face if you are convicted.

 

 

What is Sexual Assault?

Sexual assault can be defined as any unwanted sexual act done by one person to another that violates a person’s sexual integrity and dignity. This can encompass a variety of behaviours including inappropriate touching, groping, kissing or rape. 

Sexual assault hinges on the concept of consent. Sexual activity is only considered legal when both parties give their consent. Consent is defined in Canada’s Criminal Code in Section 273.1(1) as the voluntary agreement to engage in the sexual activity in question. The responsibility for ensuring there is consent is on the person who chooses to initiate sexual activity. 

The Criminal Code of Canada outlines the definition fo what behaviour constitutes an “assault” in Section 265:

(a) without acquiring the consent of the other individual, he/she uses force intentionally to that other individual, either directly or indirectly;

(b) he/she tries or threatens, through an act or gesture, to exert force to the other individual, if he/she has, or causes that other individual to believe on reasonable grounds that he/she has the ability to affect his/her purpose; or

(c) while openly wearing or carrying a weapon or upon the understanding thereof, he/she engages in accosting or impeding another individual.

The Criminal Code of Canada also outlines 3 primary types of sexual assault, with each one carrying their own corresponding punishments:

 

Sexual Assault: an assault of a sexual nature that violates the sexual integrity of the victim. This involves minor physical injuries or no injuries to the victim. Sentencing is a case-by-case basis.

 

Sexual Assault with a Weapon (Section 272): when committing sexual assault, the perpetrator also carries, uses or threatens to use a weapon and causes bodily harm. This carries a maximum sentence of 14 years in jail.

 

Aggravated Sexual Assault (Section 273): in committing a sexual assault, the perpetrator wounds, maims, disfigures or endangers the life of the victim. This conviction can result in a maximum jail time of 14 years.

Another subset of sexual assault is sexual violence. Although sexual assault itself is not always violent, it can escalate into sexual violence, which is any sexual act or attempt to obtain a sexual act by violence or force.

 

 

Moving Forward Once Your Trial Date is Set

A trial date set today, for example, would mean that the trial itself is likely to take place 6-8 months down the line, if not a complete year. It is quite a lengthy process, as such, having a lawyer by your side eases the stress and gives you plenty of opportunity to prepare. 

On your behalf, we will file the necessary pre-trial applications, which may include the paperwork to have evidence thrown out, Charter applications, evidentiary applications, and the likes. 

At this time, we will also assess the complainant’s psychiatric records and other third-party applications, check if your rights were breached at any stake, and work out other legal and factual details. 

When your day in court arrives, the defence team will conduct a cross-examination of witnesses and highlight evidence that helps your defence, whether that entails pointing out inconsistencies, bases, weaknesses or improbabilities in the Crown’s version of events. 

These stages are crucial to your overall defence and we cannot stress enough how important it is to prepare well. Big cases could call for hundreds of hours of prep work. You need a reliable and experienced lawyer who can bring about the best results for your defence.  

 

 

Possible Convictions

If you are convicted of sexual assault charges, you face a high possibility of jail time. 

Generally, any person who is convicted of sexual assault will face jail time for all but the most minor incidents. This is done to deter such behaviour; the courts are trying to send a message that violating the sexual dignity of others will not be tolerated

Anyone who commits a sexual assault is guilty of two primary types of offences:

– An indictable offence and is liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 10 years or

– An offence punishable on summary conviction and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 18 months

However, these are only rough numbers; punishment generally depends on the type of sexual assault committed. The length of jail time will depend upon the nature and severity of the assault committed, whether the accused has a prior criminal record for any other offences and the accused’s background or character. If the accused is a person of previous good character, this can help reduce the jail term.

In addition to the sentence passed down by a judge, offenders will be required to register in the National Sex Offender Registry. They must provide information such as their address, phone number and make of their vehicle for identification purposes. A convicted person will also be required to submit a DNA sample to assist in future criminal investigations and will be unable to cross the border. 

 

 

The Benefits of Contacting a Criminal Defence Lawyer Immediately

Contacting a trusted sexual assault lawyer in Newmarket as soon as possible is highly advisable since sexual assault charges are treated very seriously in court. Your lawyer can explain the process, provide support, have evidence that was obtained not pursuant to the law disregarded and protect your rights. 

They possess the legal knowledge and expertise to help strengthen your case and navigate you through the complex legal system, preparing you effectively for the prosecutor’s questioning.

Even if you aren’t convicted, a sexual assault charge can have a lasting impact on your life. If you are facing sexual assault charges, you will need an experienced lawyer who will fight for your rights. 

 

Contact Semyonov Law as soon as possible and get your defence started today.

Domestic Violence: Definition, Penalties and How to Strengthen Your Defense in Court | Domestic Assault Defence Lawyer Newmarket

Domestic Assault Defence Lawyer, Newmarket

Allegations of domestic violence are major offences in Canada and are taken very seriously by police. If you find yourself facing allegations of domestic violence, it’s extremely important to make sure that you get in touch with an affordable Newmarket domestic assault lawyer as soon as possible to help fight the charges.

 

Semyonov Law is an experienced legal team ready to handle your case. Our team works tirelessly to ensure you have the best representation and that you are equipped with all the knowledge you need to take a stand in court.

 

Let’s take a deeper dive into domestic violence allegations.

 

What is Domestic Violence?

Domestic violence can be a difficult offence to pin down. There is no concrete definition of domestic violence specified within the Criminal Code of Canada, but domestic assault is outlined under the section for assaults. 

 

To put it simply, domestic violence can be seen as any harmful behaviour towards anyone residing in the same household. Most people think of domestic violence as physical abuse; however it can take many non-physical forms including psychological abuse, uttering threats, harassment, stalking, or any other crime committed in a domestic setting.  

 

In this case, the term “domestic” refers to a situation where any two people are involved in an intimate relationship. Most people typically think of spousal abuse, but in Ontario, domestic violence laws differ from other provinces because they include non-romantic partners when considering whether a situation is truly classified as domestic violence

 

As Per Ontario’s Domestic Violence Protection Act, victims of domestic violence can be spouses, common-law partners, parents and children, family members, etc. This behaviour often serves as a method of asserting control over another person, and prevents them from reporting the abuse through fear of more pain. 

 

This creates an imbalance of power in the relationship and leaves the victim feeling fearful and helpless. In the eyes of the law in Ontario, every person has the right to feel safe and comfortable around the people they are living with.

 

As a result of all the potential factors involved,  it ultimately lies with the court to decide whether an offence is considered to be “domestic”. 

 

What Are The Penalties of a Domestic Violence Charge?

Incidents of domestic violence are treated more seriously than other forms of assault. If a court finds you guilty of domestic violence, there are several potential penalties you could be facing. On one hand, you may be forced to pay restitution to the victim to cover property damage or medical expenses.

 

In some cases, it is possible for you to be charged to complete domestic violence intervention programs, which have the potential to reduce later sentencing. On the other end of things, if you are accused of domestic violence, there is a possibility that you could face severe jail time before being able to receive probation. It is best to formulate your defence with an experienced Newmarket criminal lawyer in order to ensure the best possible outcome. 

 

How To Strengthen Your Defence In Court

Domestic violence charges can be very difficult to deal with and the trials for such cases can also be challenging as well. The key to having a strong defence against allegations of domestic violence is to enlist the services of a lawyer who understands criminal proceedings directly related to such charges.  An experienced lawyer will be able to explain how best to fight the charges and provide customized legal counsel according to your specific situation.

 

If you are facing charges of domestic violence, one very important thing you should do is to make sure to follow all instructions provided by a police officer. Even if you believe yourself to be innocent, failure to follow instructions can potentially result in a harsher sentence. It may be a good idea to write down your account of events in full and present it to your lawyer prior to the trial. This can help your lawyer strengthen your defence. 

 

Having an experienced defence lawyer also comes into play In the courtroom. An experienced lawyer can aThey can provide guidance to obtain the best possible result and work to make sure the truth of the case comes out in court.

 

It’s our priority at Semyonov Law to make sure you get the justice you deserve. Call us at (647) 292-3377 today to review your case and get you the justice you deserve.

 

Kindly note that the above material is intended to serve only as general information and not qualified legal advice.

Charged With a First-Time DUI? Here’s What You Must Do Next. | Affordable DUI Attorney Newmarket

You’re likely here because you’re facing a DUI charge. If so, don’t panic. We’ve compiled some information to guide you through the next steps!

What is a DUI charge? Driving while under the influence in Canada is a serious offence and comes with varying penalties based on the severity of the case. This offence includes operating a vehicle when impaired by a drug, an alcohol or a combination of the two. If you or a loved one are charged with a DUI, don’t panic. Semyonov Law is here to guide you through the process. 

It’s best to act quickly when it comes to a DUI charge. Semyonov Law is an affordable DUI attorney in Newmarket with extensive experience of the legal system in Canada. Our team’s collective expertise has been gleaned through years upon years of representing clients at all levels of court. 

We will answer your questions accurately and help move your case forward quickly so that you can spend as much time away from the courtroom as possible. Our team works around the clock to elevate your chances of an acquittal. 

Without further ado, let’s answer the main questions running through your mind right now!

 

 

  • What should I do first when I get charged with a DUI?

 

Officers are emboldened by the law to stop drivers at random and request that they undergo a breath test or perform a series of physical tests to check for impairment. If there exists reasonable grounds to suspect impairment and the driver fails these tests, they may get arrested. 

Note, if you fail to comply with the officer’s requests, you may be subject to a license suspension for 90 days. Upon arrest, the officer will escort you to the station or a testing facility to undergo further tests. 

At this juncture, you aren’t legally bound to comply with such tests without FIRST contacting a drunk driving criminal defence lawyer. We advise you to do so immediately and exercise your right to silence until the lawyer gives you further instructions. 

 

 

  • What are the penalties of a first-time DUI offence?

 

Most DUI offences in Canada are pursued under a summary conviction rather than an indictment. The driver convicted of a DUI may face;

– A fine of $1,000 or more

– A license suspension

– An 18-month jail sentence

– Ignition interlock on the vehicle

– Mandatory completion of a rehabilitative drug program

– Medical evaluation to gauge whether the driver is fit to drive again

Even if you get convicted, an experienced criminal defence lawyer can use legal loopholes to lessen your sentence. This is why it’s so so important to reach out to a lawyer who has handled these types of cases before. 

 

 

  • How long does a DUI stay on my record?

 

This stays on the police database forever, unless you apply for a record suspension. Insurance rates are likely to be way more expensive for at least 3 years from the date of the conviction. Employers will have access to this information when they run a background check on you. 

You have the option of applying for a record suspension when 5 years have elapsed from the date of the conviction. If you meet the eligibility criteria which include not committing further offences among other things, your record will be sealed and not available to inquiries by employers. 

A record suspension does not erase the DUI, it just makes it less accessible and hence, job searches may become easier and insurance more obtainable. 

 

 

  • What happens to my car when I get arrested for a DUI?

 

One of a couple of different scenarios could play out;

  • An officer may take your vehicle to the station and contact one of your family members to come pick it up.
  • You may be permitted to call a family member or friend on-scene and have them come pick the vehicle up.
  • If you are to be briefly detained, the police will leave the vehicle where it is and allow you to come pick it up later.
  • The vehicle is impounded and you may retrieve it from the lot once you are released from custody. 

 

 

  • Should I get a public defender or a private lawyer for my DUI?

 

This is, of course, entirely up to you. Here’s what you need to know before making that decision. 

Public defenders might be cheaper, however, they have a very heavy workload and pay little attention to the outcome of each case. A private criminal defence lawyer, on the other hand, will spend one-on-one time with you to understand the intricacies of your case. They will try their very best to get you cleared of all charges. Every time a case doesn’t swing in the private lawyer’s favour, their business takes a hit. 

As such, you can expect a great level of care and detail with a private attorney. 

 

A DUI is a Serious Offence in Canada – Act Quickly!

At Semyonov Law, we will carefully review your arrest details and work around the clock to get you the best possible outcome for your case. Our Newmarket defence team specializes in challenging cases and routinely secures not-guilty verdicts for people charged with DUIs. 

We’re standing by! Contact us to improve your chances of getting cleared of your DUI charge. 

 

Kindly note that the above material is meant to serve as general information, and not legal advice. 

Professional Male lawyer or judge working with contract papers,

Facing a Drug Charge? Don’t Panic. Turn to a Trusted Criminal Defence Lawyer Today | Drugs Lawyer Newmarket

Take a deep breath. We’re here to help! If you are facing a criminal charge relating to drug use, possession, trafficking, production or importing/exporting, don’t panic. Whether you are innocent or guilty, it’s best to get in touch with an affordable Newmarket criminal defence lawyer

At Semyonov Law, our main goal is to get you the justice you deserve, so that you can retain your quality of life beyond the charge. Our team introduces a wealth of experience to your case, working around the clock to gather evidence and present a strong front against the prosecution. 

To us, you aren’t just another file number. We work with you tirelessly to sort out your concerns and get you the best possible outcome in court. 

Is it better to hire a private lawyer or a public defender? The main benefit of hiring a private lawyer is that, if they do a shoddy job on your case, their business takes a hit. Whereas, public defenders take on as many cases as possible, paying little heed to the outcomes. 

Private lawyers do tend to charge more by the hour. However, what you pay for now, you get back tenfold by way of quality legal representation that safeguards your personal and professional future. 

 

What Constitutes a Drug Charge?

The Controlled Drugs and Substances Act lists a number of different substances that are banned including opium, heroin, cocaine, oxycodone, morphine, methadone and PCP. Some substances are totally banned, whereas others can be legitimately made available under certain circumstances such as a doctor’s prescription. 

 

Possession With Intent to Use

This refers to the circumstance where the prohibited drug (listed in the Act) was on your person or in your immediate vicinity and you had an intent to personally consume it. The officer checks for the following;

  • There was physical custody of the prohibited drug
  • The person was aware that they physically possessed the prohibited drug
  • The person intended to possess the drug

You may also face a drug charge if you knew a friend, for example, had custody of a prohibited substance. This is referred to as constructive possession due to the fact that you had knowledge about it and exercised some form of consent. 

Possession With Intent to Traffic

This refers to a circumstance where you intended to distribute illegal drugs (listed in the Act). The evidence to distribute is circumstantial and determining intent usually involves there being an attempt to sell to an officer or evidence acquired from buyers that can be used as direct evidence of intent. 

Of course, the defendant need not actually have sold anything to be charged with possession with intent to sell. Even if the person intended or planned to distribute the drug for free, the charge still stands so long as the prosecutor can convince the court that the mental intention existed. 

For instance, the police may find, in your custody, plastic bags or weight scales that are typically connected with the distribution of drugs. 

 

Maximum Penalties 

The penalties of possessing a controlled substance are quite serious and vary based on the type of drug in question. Possession of a “soft” drug-like cannabis (up to 30 grams) is a summary conviction and carries a jail sentence of 6 months or a $1,000 fine – in some cases, both. A second offence could result in 1-year imprisonment and a $2,000 fine. 

Possession of amphetamines, LSD and mescaline are indictable offences and carry larger maximum penalties, namely 3 years behind bars. Possession of heroin or cocaine comes with a maximum penalty of 7 years on an indictable prosecution. 

Penalties for trafficking a drug are severe and vary based on the drug amount and type. These can include 18 months behind bars and a $2,000 fine or both. Life imprisonment is also a possibility. 

 

Benefits of Contacting a Lawyer

There are several benefits of contacting a trusted drug lawyer in Newmarket as soon as the charges are levied against you. Your lawyer;

 

  • strengthens your case by gathering crucial evidence and prepares you for the  prosecutor’s questioning
  • possesses the legal knowledge and expertise needed to navigate you through the ins and outs of our complex legal system
  • ensures your rights are well protected; by using an in-depth education in law, they exert any means possible to protect you from heavy penalties
  • speeds up the process so that you can regain your freedom and peace of mind
  • takes care of the paperwork and makes sure there are no errors when filing it
  • provides technical and emotional support when you find you cannot confide in anyone else

Time is of the essence! If you are facing a drug charge, contact Semyonov Law as soon as possible. Rest assured, you will receive affordable, experienced and reliable legal intervention from our team. 

 

Our priority is to get you the justice you deserve. Call us at (647) 292-3377 to improve your chances of winning the case. 

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How Canadian Law Views First-Degree Murder, Second-Degree Murder & Manslaughter | Homicide Lawyer Newmarket

Homicide and manslaughter are some of the most significant crimes in Canada and are viewed with the utmost severity. If you are facing such charges, don’t leave your future up to chance. Turn to Semyonov Law, a trusted and experienced homicide defence lawyer in Newmarket

In this article, we talk about the main distinction between 1st- and 2nd-degree murder and manslaughter and what the respective sentences are. 

 

FIRST-DEGREE MURDER

What is first-degree murder? When the homicide is premeditated, i.e. it is deliberate and planned, te murder will be ruled as first-degree. Such types of crimes typically include;

  • Contract killing
  • Taking the life of a prison employee or on-duty cop (even if this isn’t planned/deliberate)
  • Murder that takes place during an assault, hijacking, a hostage situation, kidnapping, terroristic act
  • Murder that takes place along with intimidating, criminal harassment or on behalf of a criminal group

What is the difference between culpable and non-culpable homicide? The former is a ruling in which the accused is held legally responsible for an intentional or unintentional death. The latter is when the accused is not help legally responsible as the death occurred as a result of self-defence. 

Prison Sentence

The Crown does now allow for capital punishment. A person convicted of this crime usually gets about 25 years to life. 

SECOND-DEGREE MURDER

What is second-degree murder? This is characterized by a deliberate killing (not planned) of an individual. That means, if a person intends to kill someone but does not plan it out, it falls under the purview of second-degree murder. It does not fall under any of the categories of first-degree murder. 

Prison Sentence

The minimum sentence is life imprisonment, without being eligible for parole for the first 10 years. Alternatively, sentences may include no parole for the first 25 years. 

Theoretically, it is easy to point out the differences between first-degree and second-degree murder. In real life, however, there are often a lot of gray areas depending on the evidence available. If you have been charged with a crime of this nature, it’s safest to contact a criminal defence lawyer like Semyonov Law to ensure that your case is as strong as possible and there is no misrepresentation of the facts. 

 

MANSLAUGHTER

What is manslaughter? This is a homicide that was done without an intent to kill but with an intent to harm. 

Unlawful Act vs Criminal Negligence

An unlawful act is when the homicide occurs as a result of a crime that was unintentional, eg. when somebody recklessly fires a gun in public and ends up killing a pedestrian. 

Criminal negligence When the murder stemmed from a failure to act and exhibited a wanton disregard for the lives of other people. 

Prison Sentence

There is no minimum sentence, however, if a firearm was involved, then the minimum sentence is 4 years. 

 

IMPAIRED DRIVING CAUSING DEATH

Death caused as a result of impaired driving is viewed as a separate offence by the Crown. If the driving was extremely careless, such as street racing when under the influence, then the charge would be elevated to “criminal negligence causing death” for which the sentence tends to be more severe. 

 

WHY A HOMICIDE LAWYER IS YOUR SAFEST BET

Apart from the nebulous distinction between the above crimes, the prosecutor often uses certain tactics against the accused to ensure that a conviction is inevitable. 

For instance, police are aware that charging a degree higher than the merits of the crime will compel the accused to plead guilty to a lesser charge. So if they are looking to get a person convicted on a second-degree charge without time, they may charge the person with first-degree murder. 

An experienced criminal defence lawyer sees through these strategies of the prosecution team and knows exactly how to handle them. They will carefully assess your case, pinpoint the strengths and determine how these can be used to get you the justice you deserve. 

 

Charged With Homicide? Time is of the Essence!

Contact Semyonov Law Today to Strengthen Your Case

Semyonov Law fights for justice on your behalf. If you have been convicted of a crime you did not commit, our criminal defence lawyers will gather information from the case to prove your innocence. If you have committed the crime, they work to lessen the severity of the sentence. 

Call us at (647) 292-3377 to get the justice you deserve. 

court-house-bail-hearings

Everything You Must Know About Bail Hearings in 2019 | Bail Lawyers Newmarket

Domestic Assault Lawyer in Newmarket

You might have come across the term “bail” before, but aren’t quite sure what it entails. In this article, we touch upon the most important information pertaining to bail hearings in 2019. 

What is a bail hearing? Bail is a court order that allows an individual charged with an offence to remain in the community instead of in jail pending their trial. During a bail hearing, the judge or justice of the peace does not determine whether you are innocent or guilty. 

Rather, they decide whether you should be allowed to return to the community while your case is in the criminal court. If you are denied bail, you will continue being detained while your case is ongoing. 

 

Do You Need a Lawyer for a Bail Hearing?

For every individual who is detained (not released) upon their arrest, a bail hearing is their most important day in court. The defendant is entitled to hire a criminal defence lawyer to represent them at their bail hearing or arraignment (a court proceeding where the charges are formally read). You do not need to contact a lawyer and may choose to self-represent instead. 

However, consulting with a qualified lawyer is always advisable. As a layperson, you may not have an understanding of the law and how it pertains to your specific case. Nor will you be aware of the documents called for or the steps to follow if you are granted or denied bail. 

At Semyonov Law, we provide expert representation to clients in Newmarket through our criminal defence services. We sit down with you to discuss your case and give you a preliminary assessment of its strengths and weaknesses. With our superior advocacy and tenacious representation, you are allowed to focus on your work and family, and not on your pending case.

 

What Happens At a Bail Hearing?

After arrest, the police may choose to keep the accused in custody, pending their bail hearing. 

How soon after an arrest will the bail hearing occur? Some kind of court appearance whether that is an arraignment or bail hearing must occur within two or three days after the arrest. 

During the hearing, the Crown gives the court an overview of the allegations. Oftentimes, this is done by having the allegations read out as per the information drawn from the police synopsis. In certain cases, the Crown may call on one or more witnesses to testify. Usually, the witness is the police officer leading the investigation. 

After presenting the allegations, the defendant’s lawyer or duty counsel presents the evidence. In a majority of cases, this is done by having the defendant or potential surety testify. A surety is an individual who gives the judge or justice of the peace a promise to oversee the defendant’s actions should they be released on bail, and pledges an amount of money to the court by signing a recognizance (a type of bond). 

The main duty of the defendant’s lawyer is to convince the court that if bail is granted, the defendant will;

  • Attend all court hearings and not abscond
  • Not be a danger to other people
  • Not commit other crimes
  • Not intimidate any witnesses 
  • Abide by all other bail conditions

– either independently or with the help of their surety. 

When the evidence is presented from both sides, they each make arguments to the judge or justice of the peace. Based on this, a decision is made as to whether bail should or shouldn’t be granted. Alternatively, another outcome may ensue, such as a guilty plea or a withdrawal of charges. 

 

What Happens After Bail is Granted?

By posting bail, the accused is promising to appear at court for future hearings and agrees that if he/she does not return, the money paid will be forfeited. If the accused:

  • Does not appear at court on the scheduled date
  • Disobeys any bail conditions
  • Interferes with any witnesses

– the bail money is not returned unless the accused is able to convince the court that there existed legitimate grounds preventing the accused from showing up. 

 

Need Qualified Legal Representation at Your Bail Hearing?

Being refused bail and remaining in custody will take a toll on your personal and professional life. You will have to endure undue stress and be kept away from your family. 

Semyonov lawyers fight for justice on your behalf. If you have been convicted of a crime you did not commit, we will gather information from the case to prove your innocence. If you have committed the crime, we work to lessen the severity of the sentence at hand. 

 

Contact us to improve your chances of getting bail. 

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