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Alan Young

Lawyer Alan Young

Fearless advocate for victims of antiquated sex and drug laws

Seen here with one of his famous clients, Chris Clay. Alan Young also ran a federal appeal for Mike Spindloe, owner of the Vinyl Exchange from whom Saskatoon Police seized thousands of dollars worth of inventory (decorative pipes and bongs and the like): the outcome? Mike did not go to jail but the cops got to keep his stuff.

Alan Young also defended Terri-Jean Bedford, the Toronto dominatrix whose bungalow was raided by cops who checked out the merchandize before arresting, detaining and turning her life upside down.

Young has given vigorous defences to clients facing difficult charges and has gained background for defence law which had been well-trampled for many years by crown prosecutors who came to believe their job was not to work for just outcomes but to convict as many people as possible and enhance their careers.

He is also an Osgood Law School professor who, with Prof. Dianne Martin launched the Innocence Project at York University. He has always shown a willingness to take unpopular clients (See Christie Blatchford's article on Sarabjit Kaur Minhas.) Innocence Project (Canada) Initial goals of the project


Marijuana smell insufficient reason for arrest

Court Ruling May Lead To Major Shakeup In Standard Police Practices, Lawyer Says

Police do not have an automatic right to arrest someone for suspected drug possession based on the smell of marijuana coming from a vehicle, Ontario's highest court has ruled.

While there may be cases in which officers' noses are so highly developed they can say with certainty pot is inside, they will usually need other reasons to justify an arrest or search of a car, the Ontario Court of Appeal says.

The court made the ruling yesterday in the case of Peter Polashek, whose car was searched after a Peel police officer stopped him for a traffic violation on July 5, 1996 in Malton and noticed a strong marijuana odour.

The decision could cause a significant shakeup in standard police practices, said Polashek's lawyer, Alan Young.