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Criminal Law Vocabulary

Indictable offences

Indictable offences are more serious criminal offences. Maximum penalties, and in some instances, mandatory minimum sentences, for those convicted of indictable offences are set out in the Criminal Code under the particular section under which the accused person is charged.

The accused charged with an indictable offence has an option to elect the mode of his or her trial. The accused person has the following options:

• to be tried by a judge without a jury and without having had a preliminary inquiry (i.e. judge alone trial at the Ontario Court of Justice level);

• to have a preliminary inquiry at the Ontario Court of Justice and subsequently to be tried by a judge without a jury at the Superior Court of Justice; or

• to have a preliminary inquiry at the Ontario Court of Justice and subsequently to be tried by a court composed of judge and jury at the Superior Court of Justice.

At some point during the proceeding, the Court will require the accused to make an election of the mode of trial he or she wishes to have.

For the most serious indictable offence such as murder accused person will have a preliminary inquiry and be tried by a court composed of judge and jury.

Vladimir Fedorchuk

Barrister & Solicitor
120 Eglinton Avenue East, Suite 500
Toronto, Ontario
M4P 1E2

Cel: 647-203-9636
Fax: 647-776-3168

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