Sentencing Aboriginal Youth Offenders: Cases That Should Have Gone to the Supreme Court of Canada, But Didn’t!

Welcome to Cases That Should Have Gone to the Supreme Court of Canada, But Didn’t! This week, lawyer Kyla Lee discusses sentencing aboriginal youth offenders.

Acumen Law Corporation lawyer Kyla Lee gives her take on a made-in-Canada court case each week and discusses why these cases should have been heard by Canada’s highest court: the Supreme Court of Canada.


A.W.B. is a person of Indigenous ancestry who was prosecuted and tried as a youth for a series of crimes that he had allegedly committed. He pled guilty to some of those crimes and a sentencing hearing took place. One of the issues that arose in his sentencing hearing was the question of how the Gladue factors, the court’s obligation to consider his Indigenous ancestry and the role of being of Indigenous ancestry has to play in people’s participation in the criminal justice system. The court’s consideration of all of this was limited in the context of his case.

This was a missed opportunity for the Supreme Court of Canada to clarify the extent that Gladue assists young offenders in dealing with Indigenous issues in their sentencing cases.

Watch the video for more.

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