Letter to the Toronto Star (Sunday, April 10, 2010)
Tough on crime just for the poor
Re: Former MP Rahim Jaffer connected to conman, April 8
I was intrigued to read that the Crown in Rahim Jaffer’s court case very generously offered the former MP a favourable plea bargain. When I was 17 years old growing up in poverty and arrested as a young offender, the Crown sought six month’s closed custody (i.e. jail time) for a school fight I got into.
I had to aggressively fight against the Crown and won a favourable ruling (probation with no incarceration) from the judge who presided over my case. Eighteen years later I am an alumnus of University of Toronto and Princeton University. I wonder what path my life would have taken had I spent six months in jail. Seems to me that the tough on crime model only applies to people from lesser backgrounds.
Kai Chan, New York
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