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Archive For Entries On R. v. Ryan

Supreme Court Clarifies the Law of Duress, Ends Nicole Ryan’s Tragic Ordeal

“This appeal raises a novel question,” Justices LeBel and Cromwell’s majority decision starts out: “[M]ay a wife, whose life is threatened by her abusive husband, rely on the defence of duress when she tries to have him murdered? While the lower courts took a more expansive view of the defence of duress—as being available to […]

R v Ryan: When a Woman Prefers Being Behind Bars than Being Free

Late last week, the Supreme Court of Canada heard the arguments in R v Ryan [2011 NSCA 30], which is shaping up to be a pivotal spousal abuse case in Canada. At the centre of this case is a former high school teacher, Nicole Patricia Ryan (née Doucet), who hired a hit man to kill […]