Canada vs. United States: Legal System

Topics: Law, Law of the United States, Crime Pages: 3 (1141 words) Published: June 24, 2012
Since the British North America Act was adopted in 1867, Canada has been developing and writing up their own laws independently from other countries. Many people believe that, though our Canadian laws have come far from the days of the BNA act, they are still not up to par with the harshness of American laws. The advantage that Canadians have over Americans is that in Canada, there is only one criminal code for all Canadians whereas in the United States, every State has their own criminal codes which, unfortunately for the Americans, are not identical. Also, the United States and Canada each have a law that is fraught with the possibility that an injustice will be brought upon those whom these laws apply. In the United States, it is the ‘third strike’ law, and in Canada, it is the 'mandatory minimum sentence' law. 'Third strike' laws are criminal statutes that mandate increased sentences for repeat offenders, usually after three serious crimes. This means that no matter what a criminal has done, they will always be sentenced more harshly because they are not able to demonstrate to society that they have learned from their past mistakes. A mandatory minimum sentence is an order that certain crimes authorize certain sentences. This means that no matter how many times an offender has committed a crime, they may still be given the minimum sentence of the respective crime. The Canadian system of sentencing does not always provide appropriate consequences, and there is a disparity between the Canadian and American legal systems.

One example of the disparities between the Canadian and American legal systems is in the case of Alan Sauve. Alan Sauve, 48, is a former Windsor bus driver who, on June 2, 2011, was convicted on 22 counts of soliciting a child over the internet for sexual purposes and was sentenced to 110 years in prison. If he'd been arrested in Windsor, it's possible he could be a free man right now. In Virginia, 110 years was the minimum. In an interview...
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