Supreme Court of Canada Will Not Hear Appeal of Pilot’s Criminal Conviction

In a previous newsletter, we wrote about the conviction of a Manitoba pilot (Mark Tayfel), who was found guilty of one count of criminal negligence causing death, four counts of criminal negligence causing bodily harm, and one count of dangerous operation of an aircraft.  We then wrote about the Manitoba Court of Appeal’s decision to overturn the convictions for criminal negligence but to uphold the conviction for dangerous operation of an aircraft.

In July 2010, Mr. Tayfel commenced an application before the Supreme Court of Canada, asking that the Court hear a further appeal on whether the Manitoba Court of Appeal made an error when it upheld the conviction for dangerous operation of an aircraft.  The Supreme Court released its decision today to not hear the appeal.  Accordingly, Mr. Tayfel’s conviction stands.  It remains to be seen whether his conviction will lead to increased scrutiny of pilots’ actions in Canadian aircraft accidents and more criminal prosecutions as a result.