News & Cases

Some notable cases and news about the firm:

Client acquitted of assault and sexual offences

After a trial in the youth justice court, Trevor Martin’s client was found not guilty of all charges on a five-count indictment alleging assault, sexual interference, invitation to sexual touching, and two counts of sexual assault. The charges arose from two alleged incidents between two youths who had been dating. The trial judge had a reasonable doubt whether the incidents occurred as alleged by the Crown, largely due to inconsistencies between the complainant’s in-court testimony and previous statements she had made about the relevant events.

Client originally charged with two counts of murder given 5 months jail for manslaughter

Joseph Saulnier’s client was sentenced as a youth for two counts of manslaughter. He received a three-year custody and supervision order, with 5 months in jail and the remainder in the community. When the client had been charged with two counts of murder, Crown had originally given notice of an intent to seek an adult sentence, which would have meant a life sentence.

Prince Rupert man who killed foster parents in 2017 receives three-year sentence

Client acquitted in drinking driving causing death case

In a highly publicized case, Joseph Saulnier’s client had been originally charged with impaired driving causing death and driving over 80 causing death, after a college student was struck in killed while crossing a highway in Prince George, B.C. Those charges were later downgraded to impaired driving, driving over 80 and dangerous driving.

At trial the client was acquitted of all counts. A fence has since been built at the accident scene, next to the college, to prevent jaywalking.
Link to CBC story: acquittal in drinking driving case
Link to story: Charges in drinking driving case

Elliot Holzman joins Martland & Saulnier

Fresh from his clerkship at the Supreme Court of Canada, the firm is pleased to welcome its newest associate Elliot Holzman.

Client Acquitted of Two Counts of Murder

Joseph Saulnier’s client was charged with two counts of second-degree murder for stabbing his foster parents to death during the night. At trial, defence argued the stabbings were unintentional and due to some form of sleep disturbance. The trial judge agreed, and the client was acquitted of both counts of murder and convicted instead of manslaughter.

Prince Rupert foster child found guilty of manslaughter in stabbing deaths of foster parents

Delay application results in case being dropped

The firm obtained a judicial stay of proceedings which terminated the prosecution of serious charges, based on the 2016 Supreme Court of Canada decision in R. v. Jordan.

2018 update to the story: The B.C. Court of Appeal allowed the Crown’s appeal on the delay issue and overturned the judicial stay of the original charges. As a result, Crown re-laid the charges against the client and trial dates were again set, several years after the original allegations. Joe Saulnier immediately advised the court of his intention to again apply for a stay on the basis of delay, and the charges were eventually dropped.

Jail time avoided in Securities Act prosecution

A Provincial Court judge declined to impose the 10-15 months’ jail sought by the Crown in a BC Securities Act case involving a dozen charges. Brock Martland was counsel.

Murder trial ends in manslaughter verdict

After a jury trial at Vancouver Supreme Court, Joe Saulnier’s client was found not guilty of second-degree murder, but guilty of manslaughter. The client was also acquitted of attempted murder of a different person, arising from the same shooting incident.

Charges dropped in shooting case

A week before the start of trial, charges were terminated in a prosecution for attempted murder in Vancouver. The case involved a targeted shooting arising in the drug trade. Brock Martland was defence counsel.

Acquittal at trial on sexual assault allegations

After a trial at Provincial Court, on allegations of sexual assault and in a case involving security video footage, the firm’s client was found not guilty.