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Posted on 21st October 2017
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I am shocked at the ignorance displayed by Justice Robert Smith, an Ontario Superior Court Judge, as reported here by the BBC. The man doesn't seem to know the law at all.
In a rape case brought by a woman against her husband for multiple instances of non-consensual sex, the judge ruled that, despite being convinced that non-consensual sex had taken place, the man was not guilty because the prosecution failed to prove that the accused knew his behaviour was criminal.
Is he crazy! It is a well know and well established legal principle that ignorance of the law is no excuse: you don't have to know that your actions are against the law for those actions to be criminal; except, apparently, in Justice Smith's court.
This degree of ignorance of the law would be bad enough in a junior judge or magistrate, but this man sits on the Ontario Superior Court, at which elevated position we should expect and even demand higher standards of knowledge and good judgement. Disciplinary action is called for, as well as revisiting the rape case. Maybe even firing the judge is called for.