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Top Five 2010: R v Morelli

Each year at OJEN’s Toronto Summer Law Institute, a judge from the Court of Appeal for Ontario identifies five cases that are of significance in the educational setting. This summary, based on these comments and observations, is appropriate for discussion and debate in the classroom setting.

R v Morelli, 2010 SCC 8, [2010] 1 SCR 253

In this case, the Supreme Court of Canada (SCC) dealt with what it means to “possess” pornography under the Criminal Code of Canada (CCC).  A computer technician noticed links to child pornography websites on the computer of the accused when installing high-speed Internet.  The Supreme Court determined that the links did not amount to possession of child pornography.  The Court wrote, “in order to commit the offence of possession (as opposed to the offence of accessing), one must knowingly acquire the underlying data files and store them in a place under one’s control.” [para. 66; emphasis original] The full decision is available here.


Date Produced: 2010

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