Federal/Provincial/Territorial Heads of Prosecutions Committee

September 15, 2011 15:22 ET

National Prosecution Awards for Top Prosecutors

ST. JOHN'S, NEWFOUNDLAND AND LABRADOR--(Marketwire - Sept. 15, 2011) - The Federal/Provincial/Territorial Heads of Prosecutions Committee has recognized the outstanding accomplishments of four prosecutors, who were honoured at an awards ceremony held last night. The award program, instituted in 2006, honours professional excellence, exemplary service, and outstanding achievements.

The awards were presented by the Honourable Felix Collins, Minister of Justice and Attorney General for Newfoundland and Labrador.

"It is an honour to host the Heads of Prosecutions from across Canada and to recognize these four talented and committed individuals for excellence in the criminal justice system," said Minister Collins. "These four prosecutors are inspirations to all those who work with them and I congratulate them on the important work they have done to improve the lives of so many people."

The Committee chose the following prosecutors for their contributions to advancing and promoting prosecutions within the Canadian criminal justice system:

  • Mr. Rupert Ross, Counsel with the Ministry of the Attorney General of Ontario, was awarded the 2011 Humanitarian Award. As a prosecutor in northern fly-in communities, Mr. Ross developed insight into the needs and cultural traditions of Aboriginal people, which lead him to advocate alternatives to traditional justice to improve the quality of life in First Nations communities. He has studied and described Aboriginal teachings and values and the devastating impact of the modern era assault on these values. He has written and lectured extensively to expose the tragic plight of these communities.
  • Mr. Paul Lindsay, Counsel with the Ministry of the Attorney General of Ontario, was awarded the 2011 Commitment to Justice Award. Since his call to the bar in 1979, he has held many positions in the Ministry, including the appointed position of Assistant Deputy Attorney General Criminal Law. His expertise and determination to improve the criminal justice system were instrumental in his oversight of many large-scale projects, including the launch of Upfront Justice, a multi-faceted approach to tackling longstanding issues of delay and backlog.
  • Ms. Carmen Rioux, Counsel, Bureau du Directeur des poursuites criminelles et pénales du Québec, and Mr. Cal Deedman, Counsel, Ministry of the Attorney General of British Columbia's Criminal Justice Branch, were both awarded the Courage and Perseverance Award 2011.

Ms. Carmen Rioux, a front-line prosecutor specializing in sexual assault cases, lead a prosecution against two Canadian aid workers accused of sexually assaulting young orphans in Haiti. Despite local hostility towards the case due to the suspects' standing in the community, she travelled to remote areas in Haiti under police protection to interview victims. The thoroughness of the investigation and preparation of the case led to guilty pleas and penitentiary terms for both accused. Since then, Ms. Rioux has lectured extensively at the national and international levels.

Mr. Cal Deedman has, for the past 10 years, been involved in numerous initiatives designed to strengthen the criminal justice system in Guatemala, one of the world's most dangerous countries. He has travelled to Guatemala and attended dozens of murder scenes, many in the middle of the night in dangerous areas. He has contributed to the development and implementation of effective training for more than 600 prosecutors, 500 crime scene technicians and 300 investigators. He has developed procedure manuals, monitoring processes, and even a lexicon of terminology in Spanish to explain legal concepts and procedures.

The Committee brings together the leaders of Canada's prosecution services to promote assistance and cooperation on operational issues relating to criminal prosecutions. The Committee also provides the prosecution perspective to Federal/Provincial/Territorial Ministers and Deputy Ministers Responsible for Justice.

(Version française disponible)

Contact Information

  • Robert Doyle
    Secretary, FPT Heads of Prosecutions Committee
    613-952-0267

    Vanessa Colman-Sadd
    Director of Communications
    Department of Justice, Newfoundland and Labrador
    709-729-6985, 682-6593
    vanessacolmansadd@gov.nl.ca