Fantino says Charter was good for criminals -

Fantino says Charter was good for criminals

Former police chief dismisses critics as proponents of “hug-a-thug philosophy”


In his first interview since winning the federal riding of Vaughn, Conservative MP Julian Fantino said Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms has “in fact, benefited some criminals.” Liberal MP Justin Trudeau was quick to criticize the new Tory MP, reminding Fantino he is “not a cop any more.” Fantino shot back accusing Trudeau of embracing a “hug-a-thug philosophy.”

Winnipeg Free Press

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Fantino says Charter was good for criminals

  1. Anyone else concerned about the mild to moderate fascist inclinations of our elites these days?

  2. Yeap, I'll hug thugs all day and night if that is what it means to protect our Charter Rights.

    And … no, I'm not a "leftie", but a fiscal conservative, former PC party worker who has been in the military. So … where are the thugs, I want to give them a hug!

    • The trouble is that the Trudeau that history remembers (that the left loves and the right despises) is essentially Trudeau, 1980-1984. The Trudeau of the national energy program, the charter, multiculturalism and big deficits is the one that suits our partisan narratives. However, other Trudeaus tend to get lost in the shuffle – "where's Biafra?", "zap, you're frozen" or White Paper on Indian Affairs Trudeau is not adequately remembered because it doesn't fit that caricature. "Just watch me" persists because it is a moment of utter awesomeness, but usually as a testament to Trudeau's strong leadership (or autocratic nature to his opponents), rather than as a declaration of Trudeau's complex philosophy.

  3. Some criminals have benefited from care in our hospitals too.

  4. Fantino believes he was clever by not opening his mouth until after the by-election.

    There will be a general election, sooner than later, and by then the voters will realize fantino's definition of law and order is in line with the recent cell block beatings administered by the Ottawa police and the out of control antics of security during the recent G-20.

    • But the G-20 didn't wreck a suburb. Fantino's got this paycheque as long as he wants it.

  5. It would be nice if some journalist actually reported that sentencing for violent offenders has gotten much harsher since 1976, a trend which has continued unabated under both Conservative and Liberal governments since the Charter's entry into force in the early 80s.

    I'm sure lots of people find comfort in their BELIEF that things have gotten better for criminals, but the facts do not support those biases. Indeed, while crime continues to fall, incarceration periods for the most serious crimes has increased.

    It's one thing for politicians to spout crap because it helps them win votes from the angry and the frightened, but what excuse do journalists have for reporting their falsehoods so uncritically?

    • I agree with you. Things are not good for criminals. Double bunking in prison cells that are suppose to be for one person. There is no good effective rehabilitation for criminals in jail. So its no wonder they become harder, career criminals. When they get out, they cant find decent jobs, so how are they supposed to support their families or themselves? Usually the answer is to get back into crime. And rehab may be the only thing that would help some of the criminals, there are a lot of people in jail with mental health problems.

      • People here and on other sites have been arguing that when you become a criminal you wave your rights. That is totally wrong. I use Cannabis for medicinal purposes (Crohn's disease). Even though I choose to break the law for my own well being, I dont wave my legal rights according to the charter. With these Conservative tough on crime pushers, they would see me in jail serving mandatory time if the Conservative bill s-10 passes. If I end up in jail, and get a criminal record, upon getting out I would not be able to get half decent job, not pay the amount of taxes I pay now, and probably turn to crime to make ends meet. The conservative approach trying to deter us with stiff penalties, is costing us tax money, good hard working people, and the future of our youth.

      • Some detention centres are now routinely TRIPLE bunked.

  6. A criminal is a citizen regardless of what they do.

  7. and some criminals, like organized crime boss julian fantino get payed by taxpayers their entire life!

    • Explain.

  8. Stating the obvious is a good sign, we need more politicians like him.

    • Unless, of course, "the obvious" is factually false, as it is in this case.

      • Explain—-seems to me Fantino made a factually accurate statement.

        • Accurate in the same way as they guy who tells his wife he had two beers at the bar after work, when he actually had eight. One can easily be disingenuous or misleading with "truths" that are partial, edited for rhetorical effect, or presented without context. As Fantino was in this case.

          • Actually, the guy`s Charter Rights were violated when the wife made him tell her how many beers he had. If he were a Charter-Educated Criminal he would know that, since the wife had insufficient reason to be suspicious of his behavior, he could not be forced to answer the question truthfully.
            He could then go to the bar the next night, drink 18 beers, drive his car while impaired, apply for legal aid, and sue the wife.

          • Not that my example had anything to do with the limits we place upon police powers (I was illustrating how a factually correct statement can nevertheless be wrong in light of context and partiality), but your comment highlights a disturbing apprehension of rights that seems be gaining greater currency in recent years.

            I honestly don't know where to begin with folks who don't understand that our freedoms and protections exist for all of us. Do you really want to live in a society where the government and police could arrest you at whim, interrogate you with any methods they feel appropriate, fabricate evidence to support the charge, and send you off to a hellish prison facility for as long as they please? Even if you have done nothing wrong? I sure wouldn't. And it not like we have to go back too far in history to find examples of such regimes, not to mention the dozens of such states that exist today.

            Remember, we don't know who a criminal is until due process has occurred. So to say the Charter protects criminals is indeed wrong. (It would be handy if all criminals grew a second nose, or had a flashing light on their foreheads to help us identify them, but they don't.) We can't know who the criminals are until a case has been proven in court with due process. Due process is predicated on rights and protections for individuals, and limitations and oversight for those in authority and the police.

            There are those who would argue that the virtuous and law-abiding among us have nothing to hide, and no need of protections under the law. I'd argue such folks ought to crack open a few history books and learn about the rise of fascist governments prior to WWII – as one example – and consider that such "logic" was a cornerstone of those horrible excesses.

          • "There are those who would argue that the virtuous and law-abiding among us have nothing to hide, and no need of protections under the law. I'd argue such folks ought to crack open a few history books and learn about the rise of fascist governments prior to WWII"

            Or look, more recently, at what happens to bystanders who get swept up by the police in the mayhem of G8/G20 street demonstrations.

          • Maybe next time the "bystanders" will stay home and let the cops do their job.

          • Um…you're suggesting the whole downtown should have gone into voluntary seclusion to avoid arbitrary detention. Some of those swept up were on their way to or from work. Would the hosts of the event or their uniformed thugs in riot gear have compensated them for lost wages?

            Talk about "hug-a-thug"…

          • You are being obtuse. Staying home wasn't an option for those who couldn't afford to lose a day's pay or who's work required a presence in the downtown core. For example, the TTC worker who got mugged by the cops on his way to work.

            Be real…it's a complex city and its core can't be abandoned completely because of the threat of abuse/detention at the hands of "peace officers".

            Anyway, you still haven't addressed the question of lost income for workers whose employers couldn't/didn't/wouldn't allow the option of staying home.

          • Your indifference is naive.

            I'm sorry but I can't accept your cavalier attitude that innocent people being arbitrarily roughed up and detained by cops is just so much unfortunate collateral damage.

            And you continue to ignore the issue of compensation for those whose income was disrupted by the event.

          • "(It would be handy if all criminals grew a second nose, or had a flashing light on their foreheads to help us identify them, but they don't.) We can't know who the criminals are until a case has been proven in court with due process"
            Works both ways – replace 'crimminals' with 'innocent'.

            Compensation is being paid. Last date to file was November 18. Ka-ching.

            Would you prefer the Koren security measures?

            "As part of a special law, enacted for the G20, rallies and demonstrations are banned within 2 km of the venue, as the third perimeter defense. Those found protesting within the area will be arrested indiscriminately."

          • "Works both ways – replace 'crimminals' [sic] with 'innocent'."

            Great…now you're proffering the presumption of guilt until proven innocent as a justification for police thuggery…you're seriously backsliding here.

            And what the hell does Korea have to do with this discussion? That's even a lamer rationale for police behaviour in Toronto. Try to stay relevant here.

            "Compensation is being paid. Last date to file was November 18. Ka-ching"

            Compensation will, presumably, be paid to businesses for damages resulting from the G8/20 fiasco. Show me where the government has promised compensation to those who were detained, allegedly abused, then released without charges.

            That's a pretty hollow "ka-ching" for those we're actually discussing here.

          • Don't worry – there will be compensation as precedent was set in 2002.

            "That's because the Supreme Court unanimously ruled compensation is available for Charter breaches where it would “serve a functional purpose” and can cover such things as distress, humiliation, embarrassment and anxiety as well as physical, psychological and financial loss.

            More significantly, “a resilient claimant whose intangible interests are harmed should not be precluded from recovering damages simply because she cannot prove a substantial psychological injury.” Even in the absence of harm or losses, compensation may be awarded to deter future Charter breaches and to affirm constitutional values."

            So how much do you think the whining Vegan will get because she was only offered cheese sandwiches at the detentioin centre?

          • "So how much do you think the whining Vegan will get because she was only offered cheese sandwiches at the detentioin centre? "

            That's nice. You can trivialize the complaint of someone whose beliefs and practices differ from yours. Can you so easily dismiss the complaints of all 900 people who were rounded up? Were they all just nuisances in your facile world view?

          • Yes the cheese sandwich complaint was trivial.
            The point of not being able to label "innocent" and "guilty" in the heat of the moment went right over your head.
            Think we are going to have to agree to disagree on this. Too many were not protesting anything, just thought it was cool to taunt the police from the safety of numbers. Oh yes, if you had a cellphone with a camera you were a "journalist". They were giving cover for professional vandals.
            Best analysis, JMHO

          • And people were harassed by the police for no other reason than they were wearing backpacks. (I suppose you'd say they should have known better).

            The inability to label the "innocent" and the "guilty" didn't "go over my head" at all but it's a distinction whose importance seems to have escaped you altogether. It's precisely that difficulty that provokes the police into fishing expeditions and, occasionally, arbitrary search and seizure and from which the charter protects us.

            Fantino and, I assume, you would do away with that annoying little deterrent to police autonomy so that the cops could detain anyone as they pleased, without concern for "guilt" or "innocence".

            The whole sorry episode is a product of the government's stubborn stupidity in parachuting this kind of glorified photo op into the core of a major metropolitan area.

            Having said that, I agree that you and I are unlikely to reach any kind of agreement on it, so I'm done with this thread.

        • the conservatives approach is 'no census' – we hope Mr. Fantino has kept careful records on this issue.

    • Never thought I would see the day you promote a Trudeau.

      Well played sir

  9. Fantino wants to suggest that the Charter of Rights and Freedoms is a friend to criminals? Well, he'd do well to explain how it should be changed. What does he mean? Do we have to lessen the burden of proof needed to get convictions? What? Until he can articulate a cogent position, maybe he should stop characterizing those who have the audacity to disagree with him as having a hug-a-thug mentality.

    The guy has only been in office for less than a week and he already sounds like a meathead. Worse than Toews. And that's saying something. Hopefully a Conservative caucus member with some cajones will call him out.

    • Jamie Bacon is an example of a 'thug' doing his best to abuse the Charter and in this case the judge gave him a big 'hug'.

      "The television is on top of the storage unit approximately 6 feet off the ground. It is positioned so that I cannot see the TV from the bed" Part of the torture compaint.

      • Let's be clear: The ruling was not based on the fact that the prisoner was not able to see the TV from his bed. Nor did anyone say torture. Cruel and unusual were the words that were used.

        From what I can tell, the ruling was based on the fact that corrections officials were taking instruction from the police when making placement decisions. And, that he was kept in a facility (as a result of police instruction) where he was unable to converse with anyone, was only allowed out of his cell for one hour a day, had his bedding restricted in a way that made it difficult for him to sleep, etc.

        Certainly there are reasons for limiting this man's contact to the outside world, but the many of the restrictions that were placed on him were unnecessary, and intended to make it easier for the police to convict him rather than protect the public.

        • But RS, convicting him would be protecting the public. Ed Schellenberg and Chris Mohan were totally innocent victims in the gangland slaying. Jamie Bacon is a sociopath.

          • If he had been found guilty, there probably would have been less concern. But, until he is found guilty, he is presumed innocent. And, given that he is presumed innocent, it is incredibly inappropriate for the police to be attempting to manipulate his conditions of incarceration. This is especially true considering that the conditions he was placed into are what amounts to a form of solitary confinement, interspersed by interrogation sessions.

            As I said, if there is sufficient evidence to imply that he is intimidating witnesses and/or otherwise manipulating the trial process, there shouldn't be any problem having him placed in a situation that eliminates his opportunity to do so. But it is incumbent upon us as a civilized society to endeavor to keep his terms of incarceration to something reasonable, and accommodate his basic needs (like adequate bedding, and the ability for basic socialization).

            If, on the other hand, we chose to ignore the basic rights of people simply because we think that they might be criminals, we lose part of what makes us better than the autocratic regimes of the world.

  10. Harper must love Mr. Fantino. Similar fascist tenancies will make them soul mates forever. Fantino would have us kill the Charter and turn us into a Police State, where due process , and evidence become less important. Fantino would love the French system where you are guilty until you can prove your innocence. Due process and the letter of the Law evolved in the Common Law over the centuries to give us a system which although not perfect is the best in the world. Fantino would love to be Judge , Jury and Executioner in a new regime called Harperland where rights , burdens of proofs, and evidence are just ignored. He might inconvenience a few criminals but what should worry any thinking person is the high number innocent people that would lose their freedoms and liberties. The jails would be bursting at the seams with Fantino victims.

    • There's been no bigger fascist running a free country in the last 40 years than PET who created the whole charter mess.
      And he didn't hesitate to enact marshall law when he felt the need now didn't he? And that high number of innocent people losing their rights and freedoms has already been happening with our revolving door justice system, thanks in large part to the Charter.

  11. So we live in a country where Crime is low and declining, yet the Conservatives decide to take an approach that has proven not to work (ie U.S.). Yall should read the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Reading through the legal section, I'm not sure which part Fantino thinks is beneficial to criminals, other than they have right against cruel and unusual punishment, a right to a lawyer, Really there isnt much more in the legal section of the charter. I'd like to know what they want to take away from us.
    I'll never vote conservative again!

    • Me neither Jay and honestly as a former PC member I am pretty confused right now as to where to park my vote….I just know it won't be for Harper and his American style republican teabaggers….I am SO angry at MacKay for all this….

  12. Fantino IS a thug. The charter attempts to protect us from the likes of him. Unfortunately so far, he has managed to evade justice. I expect that at some point his past will catch up to him.

  13. I'm pretty sure Harper will have to muzzle Fantino before he talks his way to defeat in the next general election (assuming he decides to run again). It'll be interesting to see how Fantino reacts to having the hand of some young, unelected upstart from the PMO up his back just like most of Harper's other sock puppets in this government.

  14. The cult of Trudeaupia is alive and well, and not a disparaging word can be spoken. Fascist loving Pierre is our God, and our ("law giver") like Dr. Zaeus. "Pierre's Charter" is as warped and deranged as the man who imposed it, without the consent of the population. There is no room in Canada to look at "Pierre's" Charter" with any oversight or critical thought, instead we must blindly accept the imposition. This is most important when it comes to the county's leadership who must not only blindly accept the imposition of "Pierre's Charter" , but it is also crucial for the leadership of the country to unquestionably and forcefully ram "Pierre's Charter" down our throats. Anyone who looks at "Pierre's Charter" with a critical view must be charged with a hate crime and put into a gulag for reconditioning.

    • So, insightful one, what do you propose as an alternative to this vile Charter?

      • An improved Bill of Rights (the Canadian One).
        2 Every law of Canada shall, unless it is expressly declared by an Act of the Parliament of Canada that it shall operate notwithstanding the Canadian Bill of Rights, be so construed and applied as not to abrogate, abridge or infringe or to authorize the abrogation, abridgment or infringement of any of the rights or freedoms herein recognized and declared…

        It was flawed yes but it had a level of objectivity that has been lost with the Charter that has since taken precedence over it. It is also the one of the two with the rights to own property.

  15. Jeet introduces the hammer, Guy Smiley delivers the sickle.

    He's a stubborn lead-by-the-gut cop, not a conservative revolutionary or second coming of Stalin.

  16. Whats the alternative to "Pierre's Charter"? Something that doesn't lock the country into an ideological straightjacket would be a good start. Something that doesn't turn the country into a collection of schizophrenic "groups" of inequality and victimhood. Perhaps something more democratic and consensual, rather than imposed. Something that reflects Canada's real history and traditions, and something that can evolve with the needs and desires of a modern country and it's people in dealing with unpredictable real world challenges, without the unelected sorcerers and sorceresses interpreting the ideological campaign of some demagogic A-hole leader from the 70's, who we are forbidden and impotent of emancipating ourselves from.

    • Something that allows the church to kick out the gays, allows the white restauranteur to kick out the blacks, allows the male business owner to pay the women he deigns to hire less money for the same job — that kind of thing? The kind of issues that always arise when white males suddenly become interested in "inequality"?

      • Church has nothing to do with real life and besides whoever runs the church can make up his own rules, a white restauranteur kicking out blacks?!,, that's just stupid, nice argument, women getting less pay? With all the media at your fingertips, if this happens to you its your own fault. The charter may have had good intentions on paper but all it has done is confuse common sense with a sense of I can do anything I want because I said so and in the end stupidity usually prevails.

      • Interestingly enough, while these things are wrong, none infringe the Charter (although the latter two might fall afoul of human rights legislation, which is supposed to follow Charter values).

        • I was definitely shooting from the hip, and your point is well-taken.

    • YOu have no understand of the Charter or constitutional jurisprudence and would be wise to stop talking on the subject.

    • Ok people, let's just keep attacking Pierre Trudeau and our freedom charter. What is with this pro -American stance on crime? I don't get it? Here is a case in point: Convicted serial Killer Russell Willaims. Would it be better to have him executed by electric chair so he can be put out of his misery and not have to suffer in jail? Of course not, captial punishment is wrong in the sense that it is just a easy way out for murderers. Instead, Mr Willaims, will be spending the next 25 years and more in a super-maximum 8X4 prison cell 23 hours a day in is own living hell and he will never be released when up for parole. He his a bastard and a discrace to the Canadain Forces and will rot in his own filth for rest of his pathetic life…. Now is that justice or not? Criminals need to serve there sentances and live through every moment of it. I am die hard Liberal and a strong supporter of The charter of rights freedoms.

      • However, I am not soft on crime, but I do believe that everyone has the right to live and if we brought back capital punishment into law all that our justice system would be doing is commiting murder, which in turn, would be contradicting itself. If I was P.M and was able pass new crime laws… 1st and 2nd degree murderers would serve life with no chance of parole.

        That is my two cents….

  17. An often citied argument against the Charter is that criminal rights have at times come at the cost of victim's rights.
    If we know that someone is guilty but somehow a "rookie" mistake is made in process; then the perp ( murderer, child molester, rapist, thief) is effectively free to continue unless there's another offence to indite them on.
    Ask yourself why so many good souls that run afoul of the law can quote the blasted Charter better than history teacher.

    • That is why we need some over-sight to deal with judges that "can't see the forest for the trees".

      There was a case last year (can't find a link) where an OPP cop in northern Ontario pulled over two guys in a car for a minor traffic violation. While taking the information from the driver he became suspicious and had a look in the car. He found 16 kg of cocaine in the trunk. The two ended up being well known gang members on their way back to BC. The judge threw the case out because their Charter was violated as the reason for the cop pulling them over was for a traffic infraction not suspicion of drug trafficing. They walked. Now in my world the cop would be praised for great work, what a lucky break to be able to nail a couple of scumbags.

    • Ask someone who deals with Inmates on a daily basis…..

  18. Jeet, The day you inadvertantly get caught in Fantino's clutches for all the wrong reasons, please do not yell racial discrimination. God help this country if JULI is ever in charge of law and order. Evin Prison and Abu Gharib will seem like walks in Paradise

    • Can't have those types of Prisons in Canada because of the Charter of rights thing, remember ?

  19. For guy who every time he opens his mouth seems to be confirm perceptions that he was educated either in Sicily, China, or Cuba, Fantino seems to prove that he has risen to the level of his incompetence. We shall wait now to see whether he will continue as he thinks he is Top Dog or will turn into Lap Dog. There cannot be two John Bairds in the CP. So will he be His Master's Voice


    Perhaps this is what JF would prefer to the charter? I ask you, just read some of this stuff. How did a proud free nation allow itself to sell off its freedoms, and for what?

  21. 'Less common ASBOs
    Less conventional uses of ASBOs, as listed by a report to the Home Office to illustrate the difficulties with ASBOs, include:…
    A 15-year-old forbidden to play football in his street.[38]
    An 18-year-old male was banned from congregating with more than three youths, and subsequently arrested when he entered a very popular youth club. The subject scheduled for that day in the club was how to deal with anti-social behaviour.[38]…
    The youngest person to be threatened with an ASBO, a two-year-old boy accused of kicking a football at windows over a fence 7 feet (2 m) high and verbally abusing residents when asked to stop. This, however, turned out to be a police error.[39]
    A woman was forbidden to make excessive noise during sex anywhere in England'

    Hard to say which was my fav…perhaps the two year old. Thanks Julien, but i'll take the charter faws and all…no similar programme would pass the charter smell test here.

  22. Fantino might of been a good cop, but he really does not have a clue about politics. Harper likes them that way. He is in over his head . Harper will reign him in and mussel him and use him to get the law and order jail the scum bags vote.