Canadian Criminal Law/Offences/Breach of Trust

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Legislation[edit | edit source]

Criminal breach of trust
336. Every one who, being a trustee of anything for the use or benefit, whether in whole or in part, of another person, or for a public or charitable purpose, converts, with intent to defraud and in contravention of his trust, that thing or any part of it to a use that is not authorized by the trust is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding fourteen years.
R.S., c. C-34, s. 296.


Proof of the Offence[edit | edit source]

In addition to the essential elements of time, location, and identity, the crown should prove: [1]

  1. the accused was a trustee of some thing; (actus reus)
  2. the accused converted the thing to an unauthorized use; and (actus reus)
  3. the accused intended to defraud. (mens rea)

  1. R v Solar, 2012 SKQB 113 at 10

Interpretation[edit | edit source]

Section 2 defines “trustee” as "a person who is declared by any Act to be a trustee or is, by the law of a province, a trustee, and, without restricting the generality of the foregoing, includes a trustee on an express trust created by deed, will or instrument in writing, or by parol;"[1]