A citizen submitted that the terms of the rules of the Policy for restricton of access to information contained in the court’s computerized registers in criminal matters were different and less favorable to citizens than the ones applied by Cour du Québec, in cases of exoneration by the court. This new policy had been introduced by Cour municipale de Montréal in 2006, following a Recommendation of the Ombudsman de Montréal.

The citizen emphasized that at Cour du Québec, a person exonerated of a criminal accusation could obtain that his file no longer be accessible to the public after the passing of 3 years following the date of the order of conditional discharge, whereas Cour municipale de Montréal was requesting 3 years following the end of the order. This different rule had had the effect that his request submitted at Cour municipale de Montréal, to limit access to his file, had been denied.

Our investigation confirmed that the delay concerned, which was previously the same as the one applied by Cour municipale de Montréal, had, in fact, been changed by Cour du Québec to make it “3 years following the date of the order”.

Following the intervention of the Ombudsman de Montréal, the managers of Cour municipale de Montréal accepted to modify their procedure as well.

They also undertook to revise the citizen’s initial request in light of this new delay, without him having to submit a new request.

His request has been accepted and the information regarding his file, contained in the computerized registers of Cour municipale de Montréal, is no longer accessible to the public.

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