Resolution discussions, or plea negotiations as they are sometimes known, involve the prosecutor and defence counsel negotiating the appropriate sentence outcome. Typically, this process begins with the Crown providing the accused person with an early resolution offer. This is a plea offer meant to entice an accused to enter guilty pleas in exchange for a reduced sentence. Defence counsel then negotiate with the Crown for a further reduction of sentence or for the withdrawal of charges. Contact our office for a free 30 min consultation to discuss your rights.
Resolution is not in the interests of all accused persons, but the resolution process has benefits. First, when accused persons negotiate for a resolution, they gain a measure of control over their possible sentence; sentencing judges are usually deferential to sentencing positions jointly recommended by Crown and defence counsel. This has the additional benefit of creating certainty: accused persons know what their likely sentence will be before sentencing – instead of leaving that decision in the hands of the sentencing judge, who may or may not be sympathetic to the position of the accused person Second, accused persons in pleading guilty typically receive a substantial reduction in their ultimate sentence for saving valuable prosecutorial and judicial resources that would have been spent on a trial.
Successful resolution discussions require a thorough legal critique of the Crown’s case, as well as the marshalling of mitigating evidence on the part of the accused person, in order to obtain the best possible outcome. Accused persons risks agreeing to a poor resolution if they proceed without the advice of defence counsel.
If you have any questions, contact our offices now so we can help address you or your loved one’s legal jeopardy. We are available 24/7. We are forceful advocates and we ensure that our clients throughout Alberta are provided with the best defence possible.