A student from Russia who has been studying in B.C. will find out on Wednesday if he will be ordered to leave Canada as a result of his recent criminal convictions. Vladislav Anautov, 23, plead guilty in Kamloops Provincial Court to an assault on his girlfriend that took place on February 27 in the off-campus apartment they shared together. The young man was free on Bail pending the outcome of his sentencing hearing – until the RCMP found his girlfriend hiding in his closet while checking to ensure he was abiding by the Court imposed conditions of his Bail (including a condition of having no contact with the victim). Anautov was promptly arrested and placed in custody. On Monday, April 20, 2015, he plead guilty to breaching the terms of his Bail order.

Since Anautov is in Canada on a student visa, an investigation was launched by the Canadian Border Services Agency to determine his immigration status. It has been reported that Vladislav will leave Canada on his own free will, which the Crown hopes to supplement with an Order from the Court. The Crown hopes to avoid having an immigration hearing, which could be both time consuming and costly.

A lot of people will read this article and wonder why the young woman is still in contact with her alleged abuser. You may be surprised to learn that this is not an uncommon occurrence in assault files. It is partially related to the fact that there is a common misconception about the charge process in Canada. Once you have called the police about an incident and they have become involved, the charge approval process is, for the most part, out of your hands. Individuals do not charge other individuals. Police agencies forward the results of their investigation to the charge approval sector of Crown Counsel, who will decide if there is enough evidence to charge the Accused (likelihood of conviction). That is why the style of cause in criminal proceedings heads the Queen against the Accused. For example:

R. v. John Smith à R stands for Regina, which represents our Queen (even though her name is Elizabeth. When we have a King, the R represents Rex).

We are a commonwealth country, and are sovereign to the (for now) Queen.

This is why domestic assault files are often difficult to prosecute. Again and again we see the complainant (the victim) wanting to withdraw from the process, or, completely refusing to participate in any part of said process that will lead to trouble for the Accused. It is very common to see an Accused person breach the terms of their Bail for this very reason – because both parties want to remain in contact.

 To sum it up: If you have been charged with assault stemming from a domestic incident, and have had a no-contact order put in place as a condition of your release, do not contact that person directly or indirectly. If they send you a text, do not respond to it. Do not answer their calls, or speak to them through a 3rd party – just call us.