Internet Related Charges

The widespread use of the internet in our society has expanded the types of offences people can face under this category. From “cyber-bullying” to criminal harassment to possession or transmission of child pornography, crimes involving the investigation or use of the internet can turn simple matters into extremely complex cases involving Charter litigation and privacy laws.


What is Cybercrime?

Internet Related Charges Lawyer in Toronto Ontario

Criminal cases increasingly involve a connection to the Internet. “Cybercrime" is a quickly-evolving and highly complex area of criminal law.

The RCMP has generally interpreted this area of law as any crime “where the Internet and information technologies, such as computers, tablets, personal digital assistants or mobile devices – has a significant role in the commission of a criminal offence.”

Furthermore, the RCMP has identified two basic categories of Cybercrime:

  1. Technology-as-target: Criminal offences targeting computers and other information technologies, such as those involving the unauthorized use of computers or mischief in relation to data, and;
  2. Technology-as-instrument: Criminal offences where the Internet and information technologies are instrumental in the commission of a crime, such as those involving fraud, identity theft, intellectual property infringements, copyright offences, money laundering, drug trafficking, human trafficking, organized crime activities, child sexual exploitation, or cyber bullying.

While the Internet is a rich source of evidence for investigative authorities, it is also a critical resource for a defence lawyer. Social media sites, email and hard drive examination can often establish someone's innocence as much as they can establish another person's guilt. This applies equally to cell phones and smart phone technology.

Caramanna Friedberg LLP has extensive experience defending Cybercrime charges. We also have had significant success with digital evidence. If you are facing Internet-related charges or have a case involving computer, cell phone or digital evidence, we have the background and track-record to assist you.

Criminal law is not simply a vocation for us. It is our passion. Fighting for justice is in our DNA. Founded in 2002 by Sal Caramanna and Matthew Friedberg, our firm is one of a handful in Ontario set apart from the sole practitioner model. Our advantage is in our team-approach, track record, reputation, reliability and empathy. When you choose Caramanna Friedberg LLP you are choosing a team of legal professionals with the power to punch above the weight-class of any one lawyer advocating for your rights.

If you have been charged with a cybercrime, please call (416) 924-5969 for a consultation.

Frequently Asked Questions

The widespread use of the internet in our society has expanded the types of offences people can face under this category. From cyber-bullying to criminal harassment to possession or transmission of child pornography, crimes involving the investigation or use of the internet can turn simple matters into extremely complex cases involving Charter litigation and privacy laws.

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The following is a list of offences under the Criminal Code that a person who engages in cyber bullying could be charged with. What charge(s) is laid depends on the conduct of the individual:

  • Counselling suicide
  • Criminal harassment
  • Defamatory Libel
  • Extortion
  • Identity Theft
  • Intimidation
  • Mischief in relation to data
  • Public incitement of hatred
  • Sharing intimate images without consent
  • Unauthorized use of computer
  • Uttering threats
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Hacking is a term commonly used to describe one who obtains unauthorized access to a computer. Under the Criminal Code, it is an offence to fraudulently obtain, access, use, control, interfere, or intercept computer data or functions. The sections of the Criminal Code that deal with these types of crimes are as follows:

  • Mischief in Relation to Data - section 430(1.1)
  • Interception - section 184(1)
  • Unauthorized Use of Computer - section 342.1(1)
  • Fraud - section 380
  • Identity Theft/Identity Fraud
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The Dark Web gives users anonymous and encrypted access to hidden and potentially illegal content online. Simply accessing the Dark Web itself is not illegal. However, using the Dark Web to engage in illegal activity is.

The Dark Web has become an area of increasing concern for law enforcement. IP addresses on the Dark Web are anonymous, making it difficult for police to trace or monitor activity or content. That being said, all efforts are made by police to try and monitor Dark Web activity.

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Accessing the Dark Web alone is not a crime. However, engaging in illegal activity or producing illegal content on the Dark Web is. Some examples of Criminal Code offences that result from illegal Dark Web activity include:

  • Hacking (which includes mischief in relation to data, interception, and unauthorized use of computer);
  • Trafficking Firearms;
  • Accessing creating, or distributing child pornography;
  • Human trafficking; and
  • Piracy.
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If the Crown is unable to prove the essential elements of the particular offence beyond a reasonable doubt, they will have failed to discharge their burden, and the accused will be acquitted.

While the Internet is a rich source of evidence for investigative authorities, it is also a critical resource for a defence lawyer. Social media sites, email and hard drive examination can often establish someone's innocence as much as they can establish another person's guilt. This applies equally to cell phones and smart phone technology.

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Internet-related offences can have serious penalties. Depending on the offence, the circumstances, and how the Crown elects to proceed, the maximum punishments range from 2 years to life imprisonment.

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