How to Defend Yourself Against Computer Crime Charges

Written by Jerry Steele


How to Defend Yourself Against Computer Crime Charges

Written by Jerry Steele

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For more than 20 years, Steele Law has successfully guided individuals and business entities through the unique challenges posed by criminal and regulatory investigations, as well as prosecutions in state and federal courts nationwide.
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In this relatively new and rapidly growing area of criminal law, it can be challenging to defend yourself against computer crime charges. However, with the proper legal representation and understanding of the law, you can increase your chances of a successful defence against computer crime charges in BC.

Understanding Computer Crime Laws

Computer crimes fall under various laws and statutes in Canada, so it’s helpful to understand which laws apply to your specific case. Some common computer crime laws in Canada include the Criminal Code, the Competition Act, and the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission Act.

In addition to these federal laws, some provinces have specific computer crime legislation. For example, in British Columbia, there is the BC Personal Information Protection Act (PIPA) and the BC Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act.

Defending Against Computer Crime and Cybercrime Charges

Even though it’s a relatively new area of law, there are already several proven defence strategies against computer crime and cybercrime charges in BC. 

Some effective defence strategies include:

  • Challenging the evidence: In any criminal case, the Crown prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the accused is guilty. This burden of proof also applies to computer crimes, so challenging the evidence presented by the prosecution can be an effective defence strategy. Your lawyer can help you identify any weaknesses in the evidence and use them to your advantage.
  • Proving lack of intent: Many computer crimes require the prosecution to prove that the accused had a specific intent to commit the crime. If your lawyer can demonstrate that you did not have this intent, it can be a strong defence against the charges.
  • Showing lawful purpose: In some cases, using computers and technology for particular purposes may be considered a valid and lawful reason. For example, if you are accused of hacking into someone’s computer, but it can be proven that you were hired to test the security of their system, this could be a legitimate defence.
  • Establishing alibi: Just like any other criminal case, having an alibi can be a strong defence against computer crime charges. It can weaken the prosecution’s case if you can prove you were not in the location or did not have access to the technology at the time of the alleged crime.
  • Insanity defence: In rare cases, a person may be found not criminally responsible due to mental illness (NCRMD). This defence comes down to this premise: at the time of the alleged crime, the accused did not have the mental capacity to understand the nature and consequences of their actions.
  • Entrapment: This defence can apply if it can be proven that law enforcement officers actively encouraged or induced someone to commit a computer crime they would not have otherwise committed. However, this defence is not often successful in computer crime cases as most individuals are aware of the illegality of hacking and other cyber crimes.
  • Mistake of fact: Similar to a mistake of law defence, a mistake of fact defence can be raised if you honestly believe your actions were lawful. For example, if you accessed someone’s computer thinking it was yours or with their permission, but it turned out to be illegal, this defence can be used to argue you did not have the intent to commit a crime.

Hire Jerry Steele to Defend You Against Cybercrime Charges in BC

As you can see, many defences against cybercrime charges exist, so don’t lose hope if you’re up against them. Jerry Steele has a proven track record and experience fighting BC cybercrime charges. Trust that he will create the strongest defence for your unique case to give you a better chance at a favourable outcome. Don’t wait—call 778-700-0012 today.