New & Notable: Ontario Court of Appeal opines, yet again: guns and drugs don't mix

Wong was convicted of ten gun and drug related offences.  One of them was possession of a loaded firearm (s. 95(1) of the Criminal Code), which carried a mandatory minimum 3 year jail sentence.  He received a global sentence of 3 years on all of the gun and drug charges.  The Ontario Court of Appeal overturned his conviction on the s. 95(1) charge on the basis that the trial judge erred in finding that possession of an unloaded firearm with readily accessible ammunition was included in the offence of possession of a loaded firearm. [2012 ONCA 432]  Not surprisingly, Wong sought to appeal his sentence.  With the mandatory minimum sentence no longer at play, he argued that a 3 year sentence was excessive and sought a conditional sentence.  The Court of Appeal said no: 2012 ONCA 767.


The trial judge was clear in his reasons that the overall length of sentence was determined by the mandatory minimum.  Wong argued that he was 23, had no record and had been on house arrest for one and a half years pending trial.  He said that his drug trafficking only lasted for 2-3 days and that he was not a danger to society [paras 5 and 7].

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