Drinking Driving Back

Being charged with a drinking and driving related offence can have an immediate and devastating impact on your life.

This is why it is important to retain a lawyer who has a complete and comprehensive understanding of the technical defences that are available to you, including the workings of the intoxilyzer.

Types of drinking and driving charges:

  • Over 80
  • Impaired Driving/Care or Control
  • Refuse Breath Sample

There are serious implications of a criminal conviction (1st offence) for drinking and driving offences.

If your employment requires you to drive, you could risk losing your livelihood. Subsequent convictions can have an even more severe impact including a jail sentence, higher fines and longer prohibitions.

There are now ways to have the mandatory minimum one year driving prohibition (for 1st offenders) reduced by taking advantage of new provincial legislation.

 Defences Available:

  • Identity-Sometimes the Crown is unable to prove who was driving
  • Reasonable and Probable Grounds- The Crown must establish a proper foundation for the making of a breath demand
  • Right's to Counsel- Everyone is entitled to speak to a lawyer before providing breath samples
  • Technical Issues- The Crown needs to present its evidence in full compliance of all technical requirements in the Criminal Code

It is important to remember that every allegation of drinking and driving is a fact specific inquiry. Consulting a lawyer will assist you with identifying potential defences to this type of allegation.



Intoxilyzer Certification


Avtar Bhangal and Suny Virk have been certified by Industrial Training & Design Ltd. in the operation of the Intoxilyzer 5000c breath test device. Their knowledge of this equipment is of significant assistance when defending your drinking and driving charge.

Our lawyers have the experience, resources and tools required to provide you with the most effective legal defence.

Notable Victories on Issues Such As:
  • Charter Rights
  • Unlawful Stop
  • Counsel at Police Station of Scene
  • Speedy Trial
  • Video Tape Review (Impairment)
  • Samples being taken "as soon as practicable"
  • Mouth Alcohol Impact on ASD
  • Evidence to Contrary
  • Language Issues
  • Post Driving Consumption of Alcohol
  • Proper Calibrations of the Roadside Device and Intoxilzer
  • Identity
  • Improper Procedures
  • Proper Demand



Recent Success

R v. M.S.M

Case: Our client was charged with refusing to blow into a roadside screening device. Our client insisted that he did try to blow. There was no medical reason why he couldn't blow.

At trial - We cross-examined the police officer with regards to his knowledge of the device he used. It was shown that the officer didn't really know much about the device, other than the basics.

Result - the Judge was not satisfied that the officer was operating the device properly and that he was getting an error message due to our client's actions. The Judge accepted our clients evidence that he was genuinely trying to blow into the approved screening device. Our client won his case.


R. v. A.D.

Case - Our client was charged with refusing to provide a proper breath sample into a roadside screening device. Our client told the officer that he "wasn't going to blow". Our client was afraid to blow into the device, due to concerns that he would blow over. This particular client had a prior record for a similar offence. We knew that the evidence would not be good at trial. We advised our client that we would have to try to win the case without his testimony.

At Trial - The officer wasn't able to explain to the court what his basis was for making the demand. He wasn't able to articulate exactly what the error message was that was being displayed on the approved screening device.

Result - The Judge could not be satisfied that the error message on the device was the proper error message which would signify that our client wasn't blowing properly. We created a doubt that the error message may have meant the device was malfunctioning. This was all done without our client having to testify.


R. v. R.R.

Case - Our client was charged with refusing to blow into an Intoxilyzer 5000C. Our clients refusal was video recorded by the police (usually standard procedure). Our client said that he wanted to speak to another lawyer other than the duty counsel that he had already spoken to. The officer kept asking him what the name of the lawyer was. Our client was saying that he needs to talk to his brother to get a name of a lawyer.

At Trial - we argued that our client's right to speak to a lawyer of his choice was violated. It was further argued that since the police controlled our client's access to a telephone, they had a higher duty to ensure that reasonable efforts were made to get the name and number of the lawyer our client wanted to speak to.

Result - After watching the video tape in open court, the Crown was so shocked by the officer's conduct that she asked the Judge to dismiss the charges.


R. v. K.S.

Case - Our client was highly intoxicated in the driver's seat of a motor vehicle parked in a parking lot of a nightclub. Our client's alcohol level was approximately 240 mgs of alcohol in 100 mls of blood (that is three times the legal limit). Even though our client wasn't driving he was charged with having "care and control" of a motor vehicle while his alcohol level was above the legal limit. The Crown would have tried to prove the "care and control" due to the fact our client was seated in drivers seat and the engine was running.

At Trial - The witnesses from the nightclub who saw our client sitting in his vehicle didn't appear at the trial date. Without these two witnesses, the Crown could not prove that our client was ever sitting in that car. The police arrived after the witnesses had turned off the engine and helped our client out of the vehicle.

Result - The Crown withdrew the charges.


R. v. V.P.

Case - Our client was involved in a car accident where the driver of the other motor vehicle was injured. Our clients blood alcohol level was over double the legal limit. Our client showed significant signs of being impaired.

At Trial - We took the strategy to show that the signs of impairment were our clients injuries in the accident. There was no evidence of bad driving prior to the accident. The accident could have been explained away due to the icy road conditions. Any unsteadiness or red blood shot eyes could also be explained as being due to the injuries and not our client being drunk. The alcohol level was determined by hospital medical testing of the blood. The blood alcohol level was slightly over the legal limit.

Result - The court was not satisfied that our client's blood alcohol level was above the legal limit, due to the fact. Hospital testing of blood alcohol levels is not as rigid as The Center of Forensic Sciences testing procedure. Also, the hospital staff was unable to say what the variance of error range was for the testing procedure. The Judge felt that there was not sufficient evidence to show that our client's ability to drive a motor vehicle was impaired by alcohol.


R. v. G.C.

Case - Our client was a taxi driver and was driving his taxi van home after a night of heavy drinking. The witness had followed our client's van home and observed some very poor driving. He described that at one point there was another taxi van that was talking to our client through an open window. That other taxi van also went and clients driveway. The police five after the vans got to the house and our client was arrested from inside his own house. Our client was alleged as having confessed that he was the driver of the van in the garage.

At trial - The witness gave contradictory evidence as to where our client and his taxi van, and where the other taxi van was parked. Due to the limited understanding of English, it was shown that the confession was not a true confession of being the driver of the van, but rather was a general comment by our client that "he drives van"; not that "he drove the van".

Result - Reasonable doubt was created with regards to the identity of the driver and that the confession was. Our client was acquitted of all charges.