Including Criminal Code, Highway Traffic, Income Tax, and Regulatory Offences

Canadian Legal Terminology

Legal jargon used in Canada for persons going through the criminal justice system includes the following.

Suspect: 
Not charged; only under investigation. He is 'suspected' of committing an offence.

Accused: 

Charged with an offence. He has been formally 'accused'.

Defendant: 

Another name for the accused; he is 'defending' himself.

Offender: 

Once the accused has been found guilty he can now be called an offender. He 'offended' the community.

Perpetrator: 

The accused has been found guilty and can now be called a perpetrator. He 'perpetrated' the offence. He can also be called an 'offender' – see above. Some American cop shows call him 'the perp'.

Appellant: 

The offender/perpetrator is appealing the judgement. He could be appealing the decision itself which found him to be guilty, or just the sentence he received, or both. In court documents he is no longer called a 'defendant', but rather an 'appellant' because he is appealing a judgement, not defending accusations.
 

If you fall into any of these definitions, I can help you. I also represent victims and witnesses. Call Lisa Christian at 613.203.4874.