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Supreme Court of Canada to review Sask. Good Samaritan drug overdose case

A man walks past the Supreme Court of Canada, Friday, June 16, 2023 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
A man walks past the Supreme Court of Canada, Friday, June 16, 2023 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
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The Supreme Court of Canada will review the case of a man who was arrested for drug and firearm offences after police encountered him at the scene of an overdose.

The top court's examination is expected to clarify application of the Good Samaritan Drug Overdose Act, passed to help reduce deaths from substance use.

Under the law, no one who seeks emergency medical or police assistance can be charged or convicted of simple drug possession if the evidence was discovered because that person sought assistance or stayed at the scene of the emergency.

In September 2020, Paul Eric Wilson was at the scene of a woman's fentanyl overdose in Vanscoy, Sask.

After police arrived, Wilson was arrested for drug possession and, following a search, he was arrested a second time for drug trafficking and firearm offences.

Wilson's conviction for several firearm offences was overturned last year by Saskatchewan's Court of Appeal, prompting the Crown to seek a hearing in the Supreme Court.

-This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 22, 2024

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