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Film Censorship in Canada

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posted on Feb, 19 2009 @ 12:05 PM
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My Rant concerns the longest obscenity case in Canadian history, known as Rv.Smith. It began in October of 2000. The reason the public knows little about it is because the impugned materials(short films and photographs found on the producer's website) are not even obscene because they don't contain sex. The films do contain nudity and violence with some very convincing special effects added, but that has not been obscene in Canada since the early 1970's. The Crown obviously does not want the case to get publicity because it will ignite opposition from major film producers who spend billions of dollars in Canada each year filming on locations there.

A Jury(of mostly religious zealots, 10 women and 2 men) in the small NW Ontario town of Fort Frances, found Smith guilty in November 2002. The Court of Appeal overturned the convictions and ordered a new trial. It appears the Judge was hand picked and appointed to her position of "lordship" one year before Smith's trial. She was a perfect candidate to pump bias into the courtroom. She had been a Social worker, then she became a family law lawyer, then conveniently appointed to the Smith case(her first Jury trial with having zero criminal law experience).

Smith was given a sentence by Justice Helen Pierce as follows: 3 years probation, can't access the Internet for 3 years, can't live in a home with Internet connection, forced to assign copyrights and give websites and domain names to the Crown, and pay a fine of 100,000.00!!! The going rate at the time was 1,000.00 per count and he had five counts, some of which overlap and arguabley cause a double jeopardy legal conundrum.

Portions of that sentence were found by the court of appeal to be "unlawful".

Sentence decision is here:

www.jafaentertainment.com...



Court of Appeal decision is here:

www.jafaentertainment.com...



Some Case History by Don Smith himself is here:

www.jafaentertainment.com...



If you read the Court of Appeal decision you will see that a new trial was ordered. The Crown disagreed with the decision and in November of 2005 the Crown applied to the Supreme Court of Canada for Leave to Appeal. In February 2006 the Supreme Court of Canada denied the Crown's application for Leave to Appeal and provided a case summary as follows:

"Smith’s websites portrayed in particular partially or totally naked women simulating extreme violence and death. The materials did not depict sexual acts".

The SCC case number is 31160 if anyone wishes to verify on this page:

scc.lexum.umontreal.ca...



According to the Criminal Code of Canada (section 485), the Crown had 90 days after February 23, 2006 to summons Smith for the new trial if they decided to pursue the case further.

On May 25, after 90 days had passed, Smith provided notice of claim to the Attorney General of Ontario because he believes that the Police and the Crown acted on their personal moral beliefs, rather than on the proper legal foundation found in the Laws of Canada. They destroyed his new business, put 17 women out of work, harassed him with unjust criminal charges, caused him ridicule and scorn in his small community, forced him to sell his property and spend his entire life savings to pay for legal fees, humiliated him and his family, ran him out of town and generally put him through hell when in fact his materials do not contain explicit sex.....which the Supreme Court had acknowledged as a reason for denying the Crown's Application for Leave to Appeal!!

In response to Smith's Notice of Claim, he received a summons in mid July, ordering him to appear in summary court for a new trial in October 2006. After the Crown discovered they had written the summons for the wrong court, they issued a new one for the Superior Court NW Region in Fort Frances on September 14th, 2006. But both were issued long after the 90 days set out in section 485 of the CCC which deems the case dismissed after 90 days for the Crown's failure to issue a summons(dismissed for want of prosecution). A slam dunk for Smith right?

The new judge heard the application to dismiss the indictment based on section 485 which deems the case dismissed, but the judge over-ruled the Criminal Code of Canada and denied Smith's application and forced the case to a second trial which began in early May, 2008.

To make a long story short, the Judge denied all Smith's applications and gave the jury an improper definition of obscenity which is more blatantly ridiculous that the first trial judge had given. The judge told the jury that:

"Even where there are no sexual acts, the materials can still depict explicit sex".

Anyone see the oxymoron in that statement? You cannot have explicit sex in the absence of sex acts. That is plainly obvious and you don't need to be a legal expert to see through this nonsense.

So Smith was convicted a second time for the same charges last May 29, 2008. Now comes the sentencing.

Back up a bit. Recall that Smith received 36 months probation after the first trial. His lawyer tried to get a stay of sentence which was denied in April 2003. So Smith served out his probation from November 28, 2002 until July 11, 2005. That's 32 months of his original 36 month probation. Also recall that the court of appeal set the fine for one count at 2,000.00 and threw out the probation order, acknowledging that Smith had no prior criminal record. (Smith was 46 in 2002 when he was convicted).

Under the Law, Smith could be tried again for the same crimes because he appealed and asked for an acquittal, or in the alternative, a new trial.

But could Smith be punished again, since he was already punished once?

The second trial judge sentenced Smith as follows: 2 more years probation!! 240 hours of community service work(to a guy that has physical limitation) and a 28,000.00 fine(for a guy with no income who lost his busness and spend his entire life savings defending himself).

Luckily, his lawyer is doing some pro bono work and appealing the sentence and convictions....and he is not doing it for the publicity, because there has been none. This is going on under most Canadians noses and they have no clue!!

Smith was finally sentenced on January 26, 2009 and the 8 month delay is another story within the bigger picture.

The new probation order imposed by the judge is "double jeopardy punishment". I researched Canadian law and found that Section 12 of the Criminal Code clearly states that people cannot be punished twice for the same offences. Section 11(h) of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms also declares that a second punishment for the same charges is unconstitutional. The UN Charter of Human Rights, article 14 also declares double jeopardy punishment is a violation of basic human rights. I researched Supreme Court of Canada cases and found numerous cases which clearly state that people cannot be punished twice for the same offences. This includes probation orders. Smith clearly served out 32 months of a 36 month probation order that the Court of Appeal ended up throwing out. I can only imagine how that would make the guy feel....knowing that his wife and kids had also suffered with no Internet access and dealing with moving the family, depression, and anxiety.

A Canadian Judge violating the Law, the Canadian Charter, Article 14 of the UN Human Rights Code? You betcha!! In the USA I believe this falls under the 5th Amendment. Incidentally, Smith's websites were in the USA and the OPP cops tried to have the FBI, and the KBI shut down his websites and they said "No". Smith was not violating any US laws. Then the cops had ICE on Smith's ass. Smith lived in a boarder town and visited his relatives in the USA regularly...While Immigration and Internal Revenue investigated Smith he was denied access to the USA....He was eventually cleared by all US agencies and told he could travel to the USA.

The true north strong and free has NOTHING to brag about while it's people let this judge get away with such a fundamental violation of the law, Charter, and human rights.

Look! I am a Christian. I don't care for what Smith was producing. I do care about justice and fairness though. I know for a fact that Smith's materials do not contain sex and violence, that means they do not qualify as obscene under Canadian Law. What upsets me is that religious fanatics in the back woods of NW Ontario became a law unto themselves. The OPP officer involved attends a fundamentalist church that Smith and his wife also belonged to, but they left due to radical "cult like" teachings. The church was upset with him and used this avenue to get back at Smith. The officers tainted view of morality and Smith leaving the group was his clear motive. He used his knowledge of the system to get Smith even after his superiors had told him Smith's websites were viewed by them and they determined there was nothing criminal going on.

There is a lot more to this story. Any writers or publicists out their interested in a great book deal? Just U2U me and I can put you through to the right source.









[edit on 19/2/09 by John Matrix]




posted on Feb, 19 2009 @ 01:20 PM
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Smith was found guilty for good reason. His websites incited HATRED against women and encouraged violence against them for the sake of sexual pleasure. His work is one step shy of snuff films. He also subjected his family members and neighbours to his fetish. While I am torn between the right to free speech and the right for women to be free from sexual hatred, I believe in this case the crown was correct in it's conviction of Smith.



posted on Feb, 19 2009 @ 01:42 PM
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reply to post by John Matrix
 


First, I have not heard of this person or seen any of his material.

I will state that I am against censorship of any kind. Some may not like the material at hand, but they have a right not to view it. If they are successful with a case in which many find the material offensive and vulgar, where will their next target be? What types of free speech will be attacked next? This case needs to be monitored by both sides of the border.

Before anyone makes a statement, of course I am against child pornography and snuff films. If one reads the documents, apparently the material in question did not contain any sexual activity. This is a slippery slope that leads to everyone eventually losing their free speech rights.

Thank you for posting this.



posted on Feb, 19 2009 @ 02:32 PM
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Boo Hoo....

Dr Don is still crying about his conviction.
Dr Don whines and cries that he has been dealt a tough punishment. He wants people to send money to support his cause of hatred against women and his right to spread snuff like films for other nutjobs to get ideas from.

Sorry Dr????? Don, you will NEVER convince me that you are legit.

I know better.



posted on Feb, 19 2009 @ 03:55 PM
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Originally posted by nanookofthenorth
Boo Hoo....

Dr Don is still crying about his conviction.
Dr Don whines and cries that he has been dealt a tough punishment. He wants people to send money to support his cause of hatred against women and his right to spread snuff like films for other nutjobs to get ideas from.

Sorry Dr????? Don, you will NEVER convince me that you are legit.

I know better.


Your statements are false and very insensitive. Smith is appealing, not crying. He was punished once and served his punishment. The law and the charter is clear...he cannot be punished twice, so he has a right to complain. He is a family man with a wife and children. He does not hate women and there was no evidence ever offered that says he hates women. He was not spreading snuff. It was fake movie violence enhanced by special effects....made with mature women actors who were between 21 and 44 years old. He may be guilty of sensationalizing his content by calling it "fake snuff" or "fantasy snuff"....but what's the difference between that and the movie 8MM which does the same? Perhaps Nicholas Cage needs to hear about this case and maybe make a movie about it!!

No one is trying to convince you of anything. To advocate the improper use of the law for censorship purposes is ignorant. The bigger picture here is about the people who abused their powers to destroy another human being's life while allowing other producers such as David Cronenberg to make movies in Canada that do have the dreaded sex and violence. Cronenberg was never prosecuted. He was appointed to the Order of Canada and got a position on Canada's Walk of Fame.

So your comments are ignorant and unfounded. The case is unfair and any reasonable human being can see it.


[edit on 19/2/09 by John Matrix]



posted on Feb, 19 2009 @ 04:04 PM
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Originally posted by kidflash2008
reply to post by John Matrix
 


First, I have not heard of this person or seen any of his material.

I will state that I am against censorship of any kind. Some may not like the material at hand, but they have a right not to view it. If they are successful with a case in which many find the material offensive and vulgar, where will their next target be? What types of free speech will be attacked next? This case needs to be monitored by both sides of the border.

Before anyone makes a statement, of course I am against child pornography and snuff films. If one reads the documents, apparently the material in question did not contain any sexual activity. This is a slippery slope that leads to everyone eventually losing their free speech rights.

Thank you for posting this.


Thank you for your comment. I have spoke to many people about this and the vast majority can see the dangers of censorship and they take the same position as you do. In fact, the Supreme Court of Canada struck down the Ontario Film Review Board as being unconstitutional for their censorship activities. The Ontario Film Review Board no longer exists as a result. If the Supreme Court of Canada recognizes the dangers of the "chilling effect" on freedom of expression, and they deny the Crown application for Leave to Appeal because Smith's materials do not contain sex, then it's reasonable to assume that you and I and those who see it our way are the one's that hold the majority opinion.

Glad to hear from you.



posted on Feb, 19 2009 @ 08:00 PM
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post removed because the user has no concept of manners

Click here for more information.



posted on Feb, 19 2009 @ 10:24 PM
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While I'm not advocating censorship, Smith's work does seem to fall under the definition of obscene that is laid out in the quaintly named section of the criminal code Offences Tending to Corrupt Morals (163).


(8) For the purposes of this Act, any publication a dominant characteristic of which is the undue exploitation of sex, or of sex and any one or more of the following subjects, namely, crime, horror, cruelty and violence, shall be deemed to be obscene.


section 163

I'm also a little confused by the assertion that the Ontario Film Review Board no longer exists. Power reduced, yes, disbanded, no.



posted on Feb, 20 2009 @ 04:16 AM
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Originally posted by Duzey
While I'm not advocating censorship, Smith's work does seem to fall under the definition of obscene that is laid out in the quaintly named section of the criminal code Offences Tending to Corrupt Morals (163).


(8) For the purposes of this Act, any publication a dominant characteristic of which is the undue exploitation of sex, or of sex and any one or more of the following subjects, namely, crime, horror, cruelty and violence, shall be deemed to be obscene.


section 163

I'm also a little confused by the assertion that the Ontario Film Review Board no longer exists. Power reduced, yes, disbanded, no.


Let me help you because you are indeed confused. In fact you are dead wrong. Don't feel bad, cuz two juries have been mislead by two judges giving false definitions for obscenity to take back into their deliberations and ultimately to convict an innocent person(probably because they thought it would please their community, the cops, the judge, the prosecutor, and their god).

Read it again!! It says, "undue exploitation of SEX, OR of SEX AND any one or more of the following......"

Sex AND....get it? SEX AND? Now do you see?

Read my OP. I provided the information. The Supreme Court of Canada said there was no sex acts. If the Supreme Court says there is no sex in Smith's materials then how can you say it's obscene? I seen all these materials, and there is no sex in them.

So you indeed are confused.

A dozen or more lawyers have given their opinions and said "not obscene". One of them being one of Canada's top criminal lawyers, Brian Greenspan, who says you can't have obscenity in the absence of explicit sex.

Ya have to have sex, or sex plus!! The Supreme Court clarified this further in 1992 with the Butler decision by adding the modifier "explicit" making the requirement "explicit sex". Then in the Ontario Court of Appeal decision in Smith's case....Rv.Smith 2005 they clarified that the sex must be graphic, at the extreme end of the spectrum of sexual activity, and unambiguous such as sexual intercourse and other non-trivial sex acts. They of course read this directly from the Supreme Court of Canada's "Sharpe" decision from 2001.

The Court of Appeal also said nudity, sexualized nudity, graphic nudity and depictions of violence made with adult actors is not obscene. I'm paraphrasing here but if you read the decision(which again I linked to, and you obviously did not research before commenting).

The 1992 SCC Butler decision also says "actual acts of physical violence". Does a theatrical performance made with actors, film, and special effects software constitute actual violence? Actual means "real" and there was no real violence.

I hope this clears up the confusion for you. Perhaps you might modify your post because when a "super moderator" ads a misleading comment there is the possibility that certain people that can't or won't research and can't think for themselves might be mislead.

You might be right about the Ontario Film Review Board but powers reduced means it does not exist as it once did.

Thanks for your comment....but get the obscenity definition right....because Smith's materials do not have any sex acts. You must have missed that. So let's not get anyone confused here...ok?

[edit on 20/2/09 by John Matrix]



posted on Feb, 20 2009 @ 08:25 AM
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reply to post by macjafa
 


Hmmmm...........
Let's see, I may be shooting my mouth off but I also have inside info on the Dr
Might I suggest that he is full of it. He presents himself as a poor persecuted innocent family man when in fact he is a fraud! He is none of those things. He has had my "NUTS" in the wringer and he not what he appears to be. Not only have I read his case history but lived it. His work represents his ideas of women there is no doubt about it. Now get off this forum. Remember, remember.........................................................................



posted on Feb, 20 2009 @ 11:05 AM
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Yes you are shooting your mouth off.
What do you call a man that has been married for 25 years with two children? They are still happily married despite what they have been put through. I have known Don for nine years, and I have had personal conversations with him and his lovely wife many times.
I have closely followed this case as it dragged it's way through the Canadian Injustice System. What John Matrix has presented here is an accurate representation of what has happened. This can be verified on my website by looking at court documents and slimey cops notes.
He is a genuine family man that does not hate anyone.
The women that worked in his productions testified in court and under oath that they were treated professionally, with dignity and with great respect, and that they enjoyed the work.

If you had actually "lived" the case history you would know this.

Arnold Schwarzenegger, in the movie Total Recall, gave Sharon Stone a bullet in the forehead, and said, "Consider that a divorce." Does that mean he hates women? It's about acting. Not reality.:bash:


Look at Quentin Tarantino's movies too. Does everything he produce involving violent scenes using female actors reflect his attitutde towards women? Of course not.



You have no authority to demand that I leave this forum.






[edit on 20-2-2009 by macjafa]



posted on Feb, 20 2009 @ 11:17 AM
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reply to post by macjafa
 

Hmmmmm.......
Karla & Paul Bernardo were happily married too.

I do have the right to object to Don and his ranting. It's a free world with freedom of speech, which apparently only applies to him. I have the legal papers to prove that he is not what he is. Don't make me post them.
Bring it on man, I am looking forward to the challenge.

sed,quis custodiet ipsos custodes?



posted on Feb, 20 2009 @ 11:28 AM
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reply to post by macjafa
 


Oh and by the way, you can bet your boots Dr Don HATES me!!



posted on Feb, 20 2009 @ 11:35 AM
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DrDon is the most forgiving person I know, so I have no reservations about calling you on your boots and raising you with my trousers and 20 bucks in US funds.



posted on Feb, 20 2009 @ 11:40 AM
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This is not a forum for personal attacks.

It's about censorship.

Please try to keep it at that, otherwise it's going to get shut down.

let's act like mature adults.



posted on Feb, 20 2009 @ 11:56 AM
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off-topic post removed to prevent thread-drift


 



posted on Feb, 20 2009 @ 11:57 AM
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Originally posted by nanookofthenorth
[ Hmmmmm.......
Karla & Paul Bernardo were happily married too.


That was not acting. It has no place in this forum. It is insensitive to relate this kind of tragic event to theatrical performances done by willing female actors. Movies are not reality. Movies take us into a fantasy world where we can explore our feelings, thoughts, emotions and learn about ourselves...while no one gets hurt.



I do have the right to object to Don and his ranting. It's a free world with freedom of speech, which apparently only applies to him.


Don is not doing any ranting here. You have a right to free speech but everyone must follow the rules of BTS and ATS.



sed,quis custodiet ipsos custodes?


Who guards the guardians? Ok ya got me, who?



posted on Feb, 20 2009 @ 12:04 PM
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off-topic post removed to prevent thread-drift


 



posted on Feb, 20 2009 @ 12:25 PM
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Originally posted by nanookofthenorth
Scaredy Cat , doesn't want to play???
I hope this thread does get taken down, Don does not deserve anyone's sympathy. Get off the soapbox Don.


You are taking this personally....you should take your personal battle elsewhere.



Funny thing is I don't believe in censorship either, but I believe he was targeted for more than just his films.


Apparently the only issue is his films, made with adult actors, and no sex. For me, it is censorship. His personal life is irrelevent to the discussion, however, as macjafa pointed out, he has been married a long time and stayed together through stuff that would have destroyed many of us here.
That speaks volumes to me.



posted on Feb, 20 2009 @ 12:32 PM
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reply to post by nanookofthenorth
 


please keep this thread as what is intended for, a discussion of topics by intelligent people. personal insults have no place.



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