Resource Round-up: Criminal Law

Many people will interact with the legal system over the course of their lives, whether through a dispute with a neighbour or landlord, an issue within the family, or interacting with the criminal justice system. In today’s post, we highlight some resources that would be helpful for those dealing with criminal issues, either as an accused, a victim, or a witness to a crime. 

Clicklaw Common Questions 

Clicklaw has a variety of Common Questions that provide good starting points for those interacting with the criminal justice system.  

For those accused of a crime:  

See the full list of Clicklaw Common Questions on this topic by using the "Crimes & offences" filter.

For those who are victims of or witnesses to a crime:  

See the full list of Clicklaw Common Questions on this topic by using the "Victims of crime" filter.

Legal Aid BC publications

These publications are booklets, pamphlets, factsheets, and graphic novels created by Legal Aid BC. These publications span a variety of reading levels; some are appropriate for those with no prior legal knowledge while others are more suited to those with some familiarity with legal concepts. Publications are available online as PDFs which can be downloaded to print, and in print; free copies can be ordered through Crown Publications. Many titles also have multilingual options!  

See a full list of publications on this topic: 

Gladue Principles 

Gladue principles state that a judge must take individual and unique cultural circumstances into account when determining a fair sentence for an Indigenous person accused of a crime. This page from Legal Aid BC talks about Gladue principles and how they are applied:  

Legal Aid BC has also put together a variety of publications on this topic, which discuss what Gladue principles mean for Indigenous people and how the submissions and reports are made: 

  • Gladue and You: This booklet explains Gladue principles and how they are applied in court. It is appropriate for those with no prior legal knowledge.   

  • Gladue at Bail and Sentencing infographic poster: This poster shows when Gladue principles apply for Indigenous people during the criminal court process and when to get a Gladue report or prepare a submission. It is appropriate for those with no prior legal knowledge.  

  • Gladue Submission Guide: This guide explains Gladue principles, what happens at a court hearing, what is included in a Gladue submission, and where to get legal help. It’s aimed at those looking to prepare an oral or written Gladue submission and is appropriate for those who may have some prior legal knowledge.  


Dial-A-Law, a service of Peoples’ Law School, is a great place to search online for plain language legal information in a variety of legal areas. Some pages that may be helpful in this area:   

See more Dial-A-Law pages on this topic here:  

Victims Information & Services in BC  

There are unique services and information available to those who have been victims of crime.  

  • VictimLinkBC: this service provides information and referral services to all victims of crime. It is toll-free, confidential, and multilingual service which is available 24/7 for those in BC and the Yukon. You can reach VictimLinkBC by calling or texting 1-800-563-0808 or emailing  

  • Victims Info: this website provides information and resources for victims of and witnesses to crime in BC. It contains information on services available to victims, how to report a crime, going to court, and more. Check out their list of Frequently Asked Questions and their Key Contacts list.  

  • Crime Victim Assistance Program: This program assists victims, immediate family members, and some witnesses of crime in coping with the effects of violent crime. The program provides financial benefits and is meant to offset financial losses that may happen as a result of crime.