find the latest legal job
Corporate/Commercial Lawyers (2-5 years PAE)
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: Adelaide SA 5000
· Specialist commercial law firm · Long-term career progression
View details
Graduate Lawyer / Up to 1.5 yr PAE Lawyer
Category: Personal Injury Law | Location: Brisbane CBD & Inner Suburbs Brisbane QLD
· Mentoring Opportunity in Regional QLD · Personal Injury Law
View details
Corporate and Commercial Partner
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: Adelaide SA 5000
· Full time · Join a leading Adelaide commercial law firm
View details
In-house Legal Counsel & Commercial Lawyers
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: All Sydney NSW
· Providing lawyers with flexibility and control over when they work, how they work and who they work for.
View details
In-house Legal Counsel & Commercial Lawyers
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: All Melbourne VIC
· Providing lawyers with flexibility and control over when they work, how they work and who they work for.
View details
A bit of a dope

A bit of a dope

A criminal lawyer is facing up to five years in prison after being found guilty of smuggling 58 grams of marijuana into the Toronto (Don) Jail.

Folklaw would like to make it clear from the outset it has no idea why The Don Jail is called The Don, but following sage advice passed down long ago from Folklaw’s Sicilian great-grandfather, if no one asks The Don why, then no one gets hurt.

The proceedings drew an audience of more than a dozen (presumably fee-waiving) Canadian criminal lawyers. Judge Wayne Rabley, delivering his decision at Toronto’s Old City Hall courthouse, intoned: “It is the kind of case that judges wrestle with … I too have wrestled with this case,” the Toronto Star reported.

Deryk Gravesande was charged with trafficking to former client Joacquin Rowe in 2012. Gravesande was accused of delivering around 58 grams of marijuana in eight cellophane-wrapped packages as well as “a parcel of lidocaine, some rolled marijuana cigarettes and a piece of cellophane with a lubricant on it”.

Correctional officers became suspicious during the 2012 visit after smelling marijuana on Gravesande. They had strip-searched Rowe before the meeting and found nothing, but found a black sock containing the drugs tied to the inside of his boxers during a post-meeting strip search.

Judge Rabley said the video evidence matched the correctional officers’ testimony.

“If I am to believe that the smell arrived with Mr. Gravesande, then the marijuana that created that smell must also have arrived with him at that time,” he said.

Gravesande isn’t the first lawyer to be convicted of smuggling drugs into The Don. Attorney Raymond Li was convicted in 2004 of trying to pass hashish, marijuana and heroin into the prison in 2001, while two other lawyers were acquitted.

Criminal Lawyers’ Association president Anthony Moustacalis, who was one of more than a dozen criminal lawyers in attendance at the trial, said inadequate searches are a worry for criminal lawyers. (In his judgment, Judge Rabley had conceded that the first search was not up to standard.)

“A lot of our lawyers are concerned about jails because of the risks of being saddled with an accusation that then becomes difficult to defend,” Moustacalis said, adding that some “avoid going to jails or deal with people on the phone or behind screens, or they go with other persons, in order to prevent what’s taken place” (in such cases).

There’s nothing dull about Toronto, is there, readers? Why, only last May it was reported that Mayor Rob Ford, now seeking a second term using hip YouTube episodes, had been caught on video appearing to smoke crack cocaine. Ford has since admitted to smoking crack while in a drunken stupor.

Oh, Canada!

Like this story? Read more:

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

The legal budget breakdown 2017

A bit of a dope
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
Scales of Justice
Timing ‘critical’ in unusual contempt of court ruling
A recent case could have interesting implications for contempt of court rulings, according to a Ferr...
Dec 14 2017
International arbitration and business culture
Promoted by Maxwell Chambers. This article discusses the impact of international arbitration on t...
Papua New Guinea flag
Dec 14 2017
World-first mining case launched in PNG
Citizens of Papua New Guinea have launched landmark legal proceedings against the country’s govern...
Allens managing partner Richard Spurio, image courtesy Allens' website
Jun 21 2017
Promo season at Allens
A group of lawyers at Allens have received promotions across its PNG and Australian offices. ...
May 11 2017
Partner exits for in-house role
A Victorian lawyer has left the partnership of a national firm to start a new gig with state governm...
Esteban Gomez
May 11 2017
National firm recruits ‘major asset’
A national law firm has announced it has appointed a new corporate partner who brings over 15 years'...
Nicole Rich
May 16 2017
Access to justice for young transgender Australians
Reform is looming for the process that young transgender Australians and their families must current...
Geoff Roberson
May 11 2017
The lighter side of the law: when law and comedy collide
On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much that is amusing about the law, writes Geoff Rober...
May 10 2017
Advocate’s immunity – without fear or without favour but not both
On 29 March 2017, the High Court handed down its decision in David Kendirjian v Eugene Lepore & ...