R v. Boudreau

In Aboriginal Rights/Defences, Fish Cases, Miscellaneous, Offences on (Updated )

This case involved charges of illegal fishing for snow crab pursuant to Aboriginal Communal Fishing Regulations. When defence council discovered that the Band Council of the First Nation that that issued the Communal Fishing licences had discussed the case with several Government officials, including enforcement officers, he sought production of any reports and/or e-mails resulting from that meeting.

After reviewing the applicable jurisprudence the court held that since the Crown was unaware of any further information being in existence, this was a situation where the onus was on the defence prove that "there is in existence further material that is relevant" (para. 21). With respect to the existence of evidence, the court ruled that he accused had failed to establish the existence of any such evidence. With respect to relevance, the court held that even if documentation existed, it would not be relevant because the discussions at the meeting related to (a) what was required of the Band to prevent similar offences occurring in the future, and (b) the impact of the seizure of fish seized from the accused on the Band’s seasonal fish quota.