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Welcome to
The Criminal Law Notebook,
a free resource of Canadian criminal law written by Peter Dostal.
1365 articles

Search and Seizure
Procedure and Practice

The Criminal Law Notebook

This site reviews a variety of topics in Canadian criminal law. It is intended to be used as a reference for those seeking to understand technical elements of the law better. It will be particularly useful to practitioners, police officers and law students who need a convenient way to look up legislation, principles, and case law. Citations include links to CanLII whenever possible. The reader is assumed to have prior knowledge of criminal law.

The site has become a leading source of free online information for criminal law with more than 1.5 million pageviews each year.

To learn more about this project, read the About The Criminal Law Notebook page.

Please feel free to contact the author, Peter Dostal, LLB, at with any comments. You can also DM me at @CrimLawNotebook on Twitter for article or topic requests.

Want to help keep the Criminal Law Notebook free? Click here to make a donation.

Browse over 1365 articles

The articles are divided into five core categories:

Case Digests

You can also browse by case digest topic.

Other Articles

List of Criminal Code Amendments | Criminal Code Table of Concordance | Offences by Penalty | Offences by Category | Definitions | Criminal Code Forms | Precedents, Court Forms and Checklists | Rules of Court | Glossary | Crime Statistics | Court Membership

Full Content by Volume
Vol 1 - Criminal Law (A to E) Vol 1.1 - Offence Profiles (A to J) Vol 8 - Court Membership
Vol 2 - Evidence (A to B) Vol 3 - Search and Seizure (A to E)
Vol 4 - Procedure (A to E) Vol 5 - Sentencing
Vol 6 - Case Digests (A to C) Vol 7 - Reference Materials


June 20, 2023

Amendments come into force that create an authorization scheme to permit the government to deliver property and services to the benefit of terrorist groups.

April 1, 2023

The name of the inferior court of Alberta changes from Provincial Court of Alberta to Alberta Court of Justice. [1]

January 14, 2023

Bill S-4 amending various provisions relating to COVID, including the use of remote proceedings, came into force.

January 1, 2023

The Criminal Law Notebook is among several winners of the 2022 Clawbies!

December 15, 2022

Two new offences relating to trafficking in human organs came into force.

November 17, 2022

Amendments come into force that removes minimum jail sentences for various firearms, weapons and drug trafficking-related offences and expands conditional sentence eligibility to include most previously ineligible offences. It also introduced Part I.1 to the CDSA, which directs police and Crown to consider non-criminal options for all drug possession offences.

October 28, 2022

Supreme Court of Canada in R v Ndhlovu, 2022 SCC 38 (CanLII), per Karakatsanis and Martin JJ strikes down the provisions requiring offenders convicted of multiple sexual offences to be put on the sexual offender registry for life. The law violated s. 7 of the Charter for being "overbroad".

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Nothing should be construed as official statements of any governmental or non-governmental organization.

There is no guarantee whatsoever as to the accuracy, completeness, or currency of the information provided in this website.

Nothing here should be taken as legal advice.

See Disclaimer for details.