Presumption of Innocence

The presumption of innocence means that the accused does not have to testify, present evidence, or, prove anything. If the prosecution fails to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt the accused must be found not guilty. The innocence of the accused remains unless and until the prosecutor satisfies the court beyond a reasonable doubt that the accused is guilty.

The presumption of innocence has been defined as a test requiring proof much closer to absolute certainty than probability. The presumption of innocence lies at the very heart of our criminal law and is protected expressly by section 11 (d) of the Charter, and, at least inferentially, by section 7 that protects the right to life liberty and the security of the person.

Canadian Criminal Procedure by Patrick J Ducharme

The above is the an excerpt of Patrick J Ducharme’s book, Canadian Criminal Procedure, available at Amazon or in bulk through MedicaLegal Publishing along with Criminal Trial Strategies.

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