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Constitutional Law Mock Appeal Scenario: R. v. Manfred and Maria Richtofen

This resource, originally from the OJEN Spring 2010 Charter Challenge, deals with the balance between the rights of individuals and the need for public safety. Manfred and Maria Richtofen belong to a religion that has strict guidelines on maintaining one’s personal bodily privacy. They claim that having to submit to a full body scan during air travels through the United States would not comply with the tenets of their religion, and is a violation of their rights under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. The Richtofens claim that the government-mandated searches violate their right to freedom of religion under s. 2(a) and their mobility rights under s. 6 of the Charter, and do so in a manner contrary to the principles of fundamental justice, as set out in s. 7. This resource includes the trial level decision, which provides the basis for the appeal, as well as a factum template.

About the Charter Challenge

As Ontario’s only provincial appellate-level mock hearing, the Charter Challenge has students prepare arguments of Charter issues raised on appeal. While researching their arguments, students have the opportunity to connect online with other students around the province, as well as with lawyer mentors. Their factums are reviewed and finalist teams have the opportunity to argue the issue before a Court of Appeal judge, either in person or through video-conferencing.

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