Gibbons, Wagner cases winding their way through courts
TORONTO, Ontario, November 29, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Court cases for Linda Gibbons and Mary Wagner are slowly making their way through the courts as the two women separately face charges for recent incidents of pro-life activism.
Gibbons actually has two streams of cases on the go: the first is an appeal of a prior conviction for disobeying a court order by Justice Mara Beth Greene, on the grounds that there was an abuse of process, because the matter concerned a “temporary” civil court injunction that is now over 18 years old. Defence counsel Daniel Santoro is also arguing the Criminal Code section under which Gibbons was charged is unconstitutional.
The appeal is scheduled to be heard beginning at 10 a.m. Friday at the Superior Court of Justice, 361 University Avenue in Toronto.
Gibbons is also scheduled to make an appearance on Tuesday, December 4 at 10 a.m. at the Ontario Court of Justice, Yonge and College Streets in downtown Toronto, to set a date for trial regarding her most recent arrest outside the Morgentaler abortion site in Toronto this past October 30.
Meanwhile, deliberations continue on funding for legal counsel for the case of Mary Wagner. She faces three charges – mischief and two counts of failing to comply with a probation order – after her arrest at the “Women’s Care Clinic” abortion site on Lawrence Avenue East this past August 15. The Crown has been seeking her continued incarceration pending trial.
Charles Lugosi is seeking to represent Wagner in the coming trial when funding issues are resolved. If successful, he plans to make a broadly based constitutional argument.
In a written statement to be submitted to the Crown, Lugosi said: “The defendant Mary Wagner intends to question the constitutional validity of Section 223 of the Criminal Code of Canada and seeks an interpretation of Section 37 (1) of the Criminal Code to permit her to exercise her constitutional freedoms of conscience, religion, expression, thought, belief, opinion, peaceful assembly and association to use conversational speech, pamphlets and flowers in a peaceful, non-violent manner to persuade pregnant mothers of unborn children not to choose an abortion, but to accept her offer of support, in her attempt to save the lives of unborn human beings.”
He added that, “Mary Wagner asserts that she can only make full answer and defence to her charges of mischief and breach of probation by claiming self-defence of others, for by engaging in legal conversation in the pubic reception area of an abortion clinic, where she used proportionate means to prevent imminent assault upon fetuses (herein unborn living human beings) facing certain death …
“Mary Wagner contends that Section 223 (1) of the Criminal Code has an unconstitutional definition of human being … Mary Wagner thus seeks a remedy under subsection 24 (1) of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms (herein the Charter) to strike down Section 223 as inconsistent with the Charter values contained in Section 7 and Section 15 of the Charter, and the unwritten Canadian constitution, which bestows dignity, equality, life, liberty and security of the person to every living human being in Canada, whether or not that living human being is born or unborn. Mary Wagner also seeks an interpretation of Section 7 and 15 of the Charter to decide that all unborn human beings have the right to equality, life, liberty and security of the person, whether or not that human being falls within the legal definition of what constitutes a constitutional person under law.”
Wagner’s next court appearance is to be by video on Thursday, December 20 at 10 a.m. at the Ontario Court of Justice, 1000 Finch Avenue West in Toronto. An application for funding will be heard on Monday December 10 at 10 a.m. at the Superior Court of Justice, 361 University Avenue, Toronto and will fix a future date for argument.