Criminal Code (R.S.C., 1985, c. C-46)

Act current to 2017-05-11 and last amended on 2016-06-17. Previous Versions

Marginal note:No offence committed
  •  (1) No qualified medical practitioner or qualified technician is guilty of an offence only by reason of his refusal to take a sample of blood from a person for the purposes of section 254 or 256 and no qualified medical practitioner is guilty of an offence only by reason of his refusal to cause to be taken by a qualified technician under his direction a sample of blood from a person for those purposes.

  • Marginal note:No criminal or civil liability

    (2) No qualified medical practitioner by whom or under whose direction a sample of blood is taken from a person under subsection 254(3) or (3.4) or section 256, and no qualified technician acting under the direction of a qualified medical practitioner, incurs any criminal or civil liability for anything necessarily done with reasonable care and skill when taking the sample.

  • R.S., 1985, c. C-46, s. 257;
  • R.S., 1985, c. 27 (1st Supp.), s. 36;
  • 2008, c. 6, s. 23.
Marginal note:Proceedings under section 255
  •  (1) In any proceedings under subsection 255(1) in respect of an offence committed under section 253 or subsection 254(5) or in any proceedings under any of subsections 255(2) to (3.2),

    • (a) where it is proved that the accused occupied the seat or position ordinarily occupied by a person who operates a motor vehicle, vessel or aircraft or any railway equipment or who assists in the operation of an aircraft or of railway equipment, the accused shall be deemed to have had the care or control of the vehicle, vessel, aircraft or railway equipment, as the case may be, unless the accused establishes that the accused did not occupy that seat or position for the purpose of setting the vehicle, vessel, aircraft or railway equipment in motion or assisting in the operation of the aircraft or railway equipment, as the case may be;

    • (b) the result of an analysis of a sample of the accused’s breath, blood, urine or other bodily substance — other than a sample taken under subsection 254(3), (3.3) or (3.4) — may be admitted in evidence even if the accused was not warned before they gave the sample that they need not give the sample or that the result of the analysis of the sample might be used in evidence;

    • (c) where samples of the breath of the accused have been taken pursuant to a demand made under subsection 254(3), if

      • (i) [Repealed before coming into force, 2008, c. 20, s. 3]

      • (ii) each sample was taken as soon as practicable after the time when the offence was alleged to have been committed and, in the case of the first sample, not later than two hours after that time, with an interval of at least fifteen minutes between the times when the samples were taken,

      • (iii) each sample was received from the accused directly into an approved container or into an approved instrument operated by a qualified technician, and

      • (iv) an analysis of each sample was made by means of an approved instrument operated by a qualified technician,

      evidence of the results of the analyses so made is conclusive proof that the concentration of alcohol in the accused’s blood both at the time when the analyses were made and at the time when the offence was alleged to have been committed was, if the results of the analyses are the same, the concentration determined by the analyses and, if the results of the analyses are different, the lowest of the concentrations determined by the analyses, in the absence of evidence tending to show all of the following three things — that the approved instrument was malfunctioning or was operated improperly, that the malfunction or improper operation resulted in the determination that the concentration of alcohol in the accused’s blood exceeded 80 mg of alcohol in 100 mL of blood, and that the concentration of alcohol in the accused’s blood would not in fact have exceeded 80 mg of alcohol in 100 mL of blood at the time when the offence was alleged to have been committed;

    • (d) if a sample of the accused’s blood has been taken under subsection 254(3) or section 256 or with the accused’s consent and if

      • (i) at the time the sample was taken, the person taking the sample took an additional sample of the blood of the accused and one of the samples was retained to permit an analysis of it to be made by or on behalf of the accused and, in the case where the accused makes a request within six months from the taking of the samples, one of the samples was ordered to be released under subsection (4),

      • (ii) both samples referred to in subparagraph (i) were taken as soon as practicable and in any event not later than two hours after the time when the offence was alleged to have been committed,

      • (iii) both samples referred to in subparagraph (i) were taken by a qualified medical practitioner or a qualified technician under the direction of a qualified medical practitioner,

      • (iv) both samples referred to in subparagraph (i) were received from the accused directly into, or placed directly into, approved containers that were subsequently sealed, and

      • (v) an analysis was made by an analyst of at least one of the samples,

      evidence of the result of the analysis is conclusive proof that the concentration of alcohol in the accused’s blood both at the time when the samples were taken and at the time when the offence was alleged to have been committed was the concentration determined by the analysis or, if more than one sample was analyzed and the results of the analyses are the same, the concentration determined by the analyses and, if the results of the analyses are different, the lowest of the concentrations determined by the analyses, in the absence of evidence tending to show all of the following three things — that the analysis was performed improperly, that the improper performance resulted in the determination that the concentration of alcohol in the accused’s blood exceeded 80 mg of alcohol in 100 mL of blood, and that the concentration of alcohol in the accused’s blood would not in fact have exceeded 80 mg of alcohol in 100 mL of blood at the time when the offence was alleged to have been committed;

    • (d.01) for greater certainty, evidence tending to show that an approved instrument was malfunctioning or was operated improperly, or that an analysis of a sample of the accused’s blood was performed improperly, does not include evidence of

      • (i) the amount of alcohol that the accused consumed,

      • (ii) the rate at which the alcohol that the accused consumed would have been absorbed and eliminated by the accused’s body, or

      • (iii) a calculation based on that evidence of what the concentration of alcohol in the accused’s blood would have been at the time when the offence was alleged to have been committed;

    • (d.1) if samples of the accused’s breath or a sample of the accused’s blood have been taken as described in paragraph (c) or (d) under the conditions described in that paragraph and the results of the analyses show a concentration of alcohol in blood exceeding 80 mg of alcohol in 100 mL of blood, evidence of the results of the analyses is proof that the concentration of alcohol in the accused’s blood at the time when the offence was alleged to have been committed exceeded 80 mg of alcohol in 100 mL of blood, in the absence of evidence tending to show that the accused’s consumption of alcohol was consistent with both

      • (i) a concentration of alcohol in the accused’s blood that did not exceed 80 mg of alcohol in 100 mL of blood at the time when the offence was alleged to have been committed, and

      • (ii) the concentration of alcohol in the accused’s blood as determined under paragraph (c) or (d), as the case may be, at the time when the sample or samples were taken;

    • (e) a certificate of an analyst stating that the analyst has made an analysis of a sample of the blood, urine, breath or other bodily substance of the accused and stating the result of that analysis is evidence of the facts alleged in the certificate without proof of the signature or the official character of the person appearing to have signed the certificate;

    • (f) a certificate of an analyst stating that the analyst has made an analysis of a sample of an alcohol standard that is identified in the certificate and intended for use with an approved instrument and that the sample of the standard analyzed by the analyst was found to be suitable for use with an approved instrument, is evidence that the alcohol standard so identified is suitable for use with an approved instrument without proof of the signature or the official character of the person appearing to have signed the certificate;

    • (f.1) the document printed out from an approved instrument and signed by a qualified technician who certifies it to be the printout produced by the approved instrument when it made the analysis of a sample of the accused’s breath is evidence of the facts alleged in the document without proof of the signature or official character of the person appearing to have signed it;

    • (g) where samples of the breath of the accused have been taken pursuant to a demand made under subsection 254(3), a certificate of a qualified technician stating

      • (i) that the analysis of each of the samples has been made by means of an approved instrument operated by the technician and ascertained by the technician to be in proper working order by means of an alcohol standard, identified in the certificate, that is suitable for use with an approved instrument,

      • (ii) the results of the analyses so made, and

      • (iii) if the samples were taken by the technician,

        • (A) [Repealed before coming into force, 2008, c. 20, s. 3]

        • (B) the time when and place where each sample and any specimen described in clause (A) was taken, and

        • (C) that each sample was received from the accused directly into an approved container or into an approved instrument operated by the technician,

      is evidence of the facts alleged in the certificate without proof of the signature or the official character of the person appearing to have signed the certificate;

    • (h) if a sample of the accused’s blood has been taken under subsection 254(3) or (3.4) or section 256 or with the accused’s consent,

      • (i) a certificate of a qualified medical practitioner stating that

        • (A) they took the sample and before the sample was taken they were of the opinion that taking it would not endanger the accused’s life or health and, in the case of a demand made under section 256, that by reason of any physical or mental condition of the accused that resulted from the consumption of alcohol or a drug, the accident or any other occurrence related to or resulting from the accident, the accused was unable to consent to the taking of the sample,

        • (B) at the time the sample was taken, an additional sample of the blood of the accused was taken to permit analysis of one of the samples to be made by or on behalf of the accused,

        • (C) the time when and place where both samples referred to in clause (B) were taken, and

        • (D) both samples referred to in clause (B) were received from the accused directly into, or placed directly into, approved containers that were subsequently sealed and that are identified in the certificate,

      • (ii) a certificate of a qualified medical practitioner stating that the medical practitioner caused the sample to be taken by a qualified technician under his direction and that before the sample was taken the qualified medical practitioner was of the opinion referred to in clause (i)(A), or

      • (iii) a certificate of a qualified technician stating that the technician took the sample and the facts referred to in clauses (i)(B) to (D)

      is evidence of the facts alleged in the certificate without proof of the signature or official character of the person appearing to have signed the certificate; and

    • (i) a certificate of an analyst stating that the analyst has made an analysis of a sample of the blood of the accused that was contained in a sealed approved container identified in the certificate, the date on which and place where the sample was analyzed and the result of that analysis is evidence of the facts alleged in the certificate without proof of the signature or official character of the person appearing to have signed it.

  • Marginal note:Evidence of failure to give sample

    (2) Unless a person is required to give a sample of a bodily substance under paragraph 254(2)(b) or subsection 254(3), (3.3) or (3.4), evidence that they failed or refused to give a sample for analysis for the purposes of this section or that a sample was not taken is not admissible and the failure, refusal or fact that a sample was not taken shall not be the subject of comment by any person in the proceedings.

  • Marginal note:Evidence of failure to comply with demand

    (3) In any proceedings under subsection 255(1) in respect of an offence committed under paragraph 253(1)(a) or in any proceedings under subsection 255(2) or (3), evidence that the accused, without reasonable excuse, failed or refused to comply with a demand made under section 254 is admissible and the court may draw an inference adverse to the accused from that evidence.

  • Marginal note:Release of sample for analysis

    (4) If, at the time a sample of an accused’s blood is taken, an additional sample is taken and retained, a judge of a superior court of criminal jurisdiction or a court of criminal jurisdiction shall, on the summary application of the accused made within six months after the day on which the samples were taken, order the release of one of the samples for the purpose of examination or analysis, subject to any terms that appear to be necessary or desirable to ensure that the sample is safeguarded and preserved for use in any proceedings in respect of which it was taken.

  • Marginal note:Testing of blood for concentration of a drug

    (5) A sample of an accused’s blood taken under subsection 254(3) or section 256 or with the accused’s consent for the purpose of analysis to determine the concentration, if any, of alcohol in the blood may be tested to determine the concentration, if any, of a drug in the blood.

  • Marginal note:Attendance and right to cross-examine

    (6) A party against whom a certificate described in paragraph (1)(e), (f), (f.1), (g), (h) or (i) is produced may, with leave of the court, require the attendance of the qualified medical practitioner, analyst or qualified technician, as the case may be, for the purposes of cross-examination.

  • Marginal note:Notice of intention to produce certificate

    (7) No certificate shall be received in evidence pursuant to paragraph (1)(e), (f), (g), (h) or (i) unless the party intending to produce it has, before the trial, given to the other party reasonable notice of his intention and a copy of the certificate.

  • R.S., 1985, c. C-46, s. 258;
  • R.S., 1985, c. 27 (1st Supp.), s. 36, c. 32 (4th Supp.), s. 61;
  • 1992, c. 1, s. 60(F);
  • 1994, c. 44, s. 14(E);
  • 1997, c. 18, s. 10;
  • 2008, c. 6, s. 24.
 
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