R v Yang, 2019 ABQB 716

This was an appeal by the Accused (“Yang”) of his conviction decision – not his sentence. He appealed on four grounds of appeal. The grounds of appeal focused on the admissibility of evidence presented at trial.

The facts of the case include:
(1) Yang is a veterinarian who owned a veterinary clinic; (2) The two dogs at the centre of the allegations were owned by Yang after being “rescued” from previous owners; (3) The dogs primarily lived at his clinic; (4) A complaint filed with the City of Edmonton Animal Care and Control Section allege the dogs were mistreated; (5) Following investigation, the dogs were seized, and Yang charged.

Particularly, Yang was charged with 1 count of unnecessary suffering to an animal under 444.1(1)(a) of the Criminal Code. He was also charged with 3 offences under the Animal Protection Act (“APA”) for: causing animals to be in distress (s.2(1)); failing to provide adequate food and water (s.2.1(a)), and failing to provide adequate shelter, ventilation, and space (s.2.1(d)).

The Appeal Judge dismissed all four grounds of appeal. He found the following: (1) The accused had no issue with the two experts who testified – the two veterinarians; (2) The Appeal Judge found that there is nothing to suggest the TJ failed to assess the totality of evidence in reaching a guilty verdict based on the standard of “beyond a reasonable doubt”; (3) The Appeal Judge dismissed the argument that there were inadequate reasons provided about how the credibility of witnesses was assessed; (4) The Appeal Judge found the TJ’s verdicts to be entirely reasonable.

Therefore, the appeal from conviction was dismissed.