Ontario Attorney-General Caroline Mulroney has responded to a letter from Toronto Mayor John Tory which asked her to tighten the province’s bail guidelines by blaming Ottawa, saying the federal bail system is “letting too many violent criminals back into our streets.”
Mr. Tory wrote a letter this week to Ms. Mulroney, asking that she instruct Crown attorneys to seek to deny bail to accused criminals with previous convictions for gun crimes.
“Countless police officers – from frontline constables to Toronto Police Chief Mark Saunders – have told me how frustrated they are by the fact someone they arrest for a gun crime who already had a criminal record or similar offences or who was already out on bail on a similar charge, can almost immediately be back out on the street on bail and ready to cause more mayhem,” Mr. Tory writes in his letter to Ms. Mulroney. “That is absolutely not right and that is something we can try and stop right now.”
But Ms. Mulroney, in a letter sent Thursday, says the policy manual for Crown attorneys already tells prosecutors that they “must seek a detention order in all cases involving firearms offences, absent exceptional circumstances.”
Ms. Mulroney says she has written to her federal counterpart to set up a meeting on bail reform for firearms offences.