Mr. Pham, a non-citizen, was a drug dealer with a criminal record. After being convicted of two drug offences, a joint submission was placed before the court for a two-year penitentiary sentence. The sentencing judge agreed and the offender was sentenced to two years. Unbeknownst to any of the parties, under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act [IRPA], a non-citizen sentenced in Canada to a term of imprisonment of at least two years loses the right to appeal a removal order against him or her.
Upon coming to this realization, Mr. Pham appealed his sentence, asking for a reduction of one day to allow him to appeal the deportation order. The Alberta Court of Appeal upheld the sentence holding that a reduction in sentence would only seek to undermine the IRPA and that the offender “had abused the hospitality afforded to him by Canada”. Mr. Pham appealed to the Supreme Court.