Help

Supreme Court Judgments

Decision Information

Decision Content

Del Zotto v. Canada, [1999] 1 S.C.R. 3

 

Her Majesty The Queen in right of Canada,

the Minister of National Revenue

and John Edward Thompson                                                             Appellants

 

v.

 

Angelo Del Zotto and Herbert B. Noble                                           Respondents

 

and

 

The Attorney General for Ontario,

the Attorney General of Quebec and

the Attorney General for Alberta                                                     Interveners

 

Indexed as:  Del Zotto v. Canada

 

File No.:  26174.

 

1999:  January 20; 1999:  January 21.

 

Present:  Lamer C.J. and L’Heureux‑Dubé, Gonthier, McLachlin, Major, Bastarache and Binnie JJ.

 

on appeal from the federal court of appeal

 

Constitutional law -- Charter of Rights  -- Search and seizure -- Inquiry under Income Tax Act -- Whether s. 231.4 of Income Tax Act infringes s. 8 of Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.


Constitutional law -- Charter of Rights  -- Fundamental justice -- Inquiry under Income Tax Act -- Whether s. 231.4 of Income Tax Act infringes s. 7 of Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

 

Taxation -- Income tax -- Inquiry -- Whether s. 231.4 of Income Tax Act constitutional -- Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms , ss. 7 , 8 .

 

Statutes and Regulations Cited

 

Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms , ss. 7 , 8 .

 

Income Tax Act, R.S.C. 1952, c. 148 [now R.S.C., 1985, c. 1 (5th Supp .)], s. 231.4  [ad. 1986, c. 6, s. 121 ].

 

APPEAL from a judgment of the Federal Court of Appeal, [1997] 3 F.C. 40, 215 N.R. 184, 147 D.L.R. (4th) 457, 97 D.T.C. 5328, [1997] 3 C.T.C. 199, 46 C.R.R. (2d) 324, 116 C.C.C. (3d) 123, [1997] F.C.J. No. 795 (QL), setting aside a judgment of the Trial Division, [1997] 2 F.C. 428, 125 F.T.R. 161, 143 D.L.R. (4th) 340, 97 D.T.C. 5145, [1997] 2 C.T.C. 103, 41 C.R.R. (2d) 63, [1997] F.C.J. No. 85 (QL), dismissing the respondents’ constitutional challenge of s. 231.4 of the Income Tax Act.  Appeal allowed.

 

Ivan S. Bloom, Q.C., and Gordon S. Campbell, for the appellants.

 

Edward L. Greenspan, Q.C., and David Stratas, for the respondent Del Zotto.

 

Alan D. Gold and Mahmud Jamal, for the respondent Noble.

 


Michel Y. Hélie, for the intervener the Attorney General for Ontario.

 

Monique Rousseau and Gilles Laporte, for the intervener the Attorney General of Quebec.

 

Robert C. Maybank and Christine L. Enns, for the intervener the Attorney General for Alberta.

 

The following is the judgment delivered by

 

//The Court//

 

1                                   The Court -- The appeal is allowed with costs throughout for the reasons given by Strayer J.A. of the Federal Court of Appeal.  The judgment of the Court of Appeal is set aside and the trial judgment is restored.  The constitutional questions are answered as follows:

 

1.   Does s. 231.4 of the Income Tax Act, R.S.C. 1952, c. 148, as amended, restrict rights guaranteed by s. 7  of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms ?

 

The answer is no.

 

2.   If so, can these restrictions be demonstrably justified in a free and democratic society under s. 1  of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms ?

 

Given the answer to the first question, the second question does not arise.

 


3.   Does s. 231.4 of the Income Tax Act, R.S.C. 1952, c. 148, as amended, restrict the right guaranteed by s. 8  of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms ?

 

The answer is no.

 

4.  If so, can these restrictions be demonstrably justified in a free and democratic society under s. 1  of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms ?

 

Given the answer to the third question, the fourth question does not arise.

 

Appeal allowed with costs.

 

Solicitor for the appellants:  The Department of Justice, Ontario Regional Office, Toronto.

 

Solicitors for the respondent Del Zotto:  Greenspan, Nenein & White, Toronto. 

 

Solicitors for the respondent Noble:  Gold & Fuerst, Toronto.

 

Solicitor for the intervener the Attorney General for Ontario:  The Attorney General for Ontario, Toronto.

 

Solicitor for the intervener the Attorney General of Quebec:  The Department of Justice, Sainte-Foy.

 

Solicitor for the intervener the Attorney General for Alberta:  The Attorney General for Alberta, Edmonton.

 

Lexum

For 20 years now, the Lexum site has been the main public source for Supreme Court decisions.


>

Decisia

 

Efficient access to your decisions

Decisia is an online service for courts, boards and tribunals aiming to provide easy and professional access to their decisions from their own website.

Learn More