Paul Lewandowski is a criminal defence lawyer with twenty years of experience practicing exclusively in criminal law. He has appeared at all levels of Court in Ontario. He also appears in the Ontario Court of Justice on an almost-daily basis. Paul Lewandowski has earned a reputation for being an able and thoroughly prepared lawyer. He is an assertive advocate in court, and respected by Judges and his peers. Paul Lewandowski is known for his reasonable and practical approach to evidence. He is also an advocate unafraid to take difficult cases to trial especially if it means ensuring justice is done.
Clients who are new to the criminal justice system are often shocked to learn that most cases are based on nothing more than the testimony of one or two witnesses. In fact, it is rare for a prosecution to be based on videos, photos, fingerprints, DNA or CSI quality evidence. The average case comes down to whom the Judge believes. The fate of any given accused often rests on the defence lawyer’s ability to ferret out the inconsistencies from the accuser’s testimony. In this respect, there is only one vital tool in a criminal lawyer’s arsenal: cross-examination. This is how the truth is discovered and how credibility and reliability are challenged. Many call cross-examination the greatest engine for the discovery of truth. Unfortunately, it is not a skill that everyone can master. The ability of a lawyer to effectively cross-examine a witness will come from experience and from years of trial experience.
All things being equal, the success of your case will be a direct function of your lawyer’s level of preparation, knowledge of the law, and abilities as a cross-examiner. This is particularly apt for sexual assault cases and domestic assault cases where most can be reduced to a credibility and reliability battle between two opposing versions of events (also commonly referred to as a he-said-she-said cases). In this vein, Paul Lewandowski has earned a reputation for his deft touch. Mr. Lewandowski realizes that it is your freedom in his hands. He and his team will provide you with legal advice that is second to none.
Mr. Lewandowski has handled well over two thousand cases and cross-examined countless witnesses. His extensive experience includes trials in the Ontario Court of Justice, jury trials and summary conviction appeals in the Superior Court of Justice, appeals at the Ontario Court of Appeal. He has also conducted thousands of pleas at all levels of court, and has occassionally appeared before divisional court on quasi-criminal matters. In 2014, Mr. Lewandowski was selected as a “Litigation Lawyer to Watch in 2015” by Lexpert Magazine. He has been counsel on many recent high profile cases which have resulted in acquittals, many of which have garnered national attention. In this respect, Mr. Lewandowski has significant experience managing media relations where required. In situations where media involvement is unavoidable and publication bans are not available, the firm takes a tactical approach shaping his client’s public exposure to reduce the negative impact of pre-trial publicity. In this respect, locally, Mr. Lewandowski has appeared as a commentator in the Ottawa Sun, Ottawa Citizen, 1310 News, 580 CFRA, CTV and CBC.
Mr. Lewandowski was formerly a professor for the Algonquin College paralegal and law clerk programs. More recently, he has been invited as a guest lecturer at the Crown School Continuing Education Program 2022 in London, Ontario, on the topic of “Cybercrime.” In this respect, Mr. Lewandowski has a particular niche practice in cybercrime prosecutions, and has developed a proprietary software package “Sleuth Forensics”, coded in Python and C++. The software dissects seized hard drives, analyse the meta-data, unpacks the SQL databases, Internet and chat histories, and organizes it in a way conducive to cross-examination of the Crown expert.
Mr. Lewandowski is one of the most experienced defence lawyers in Canada in the area of dangerous and long-term offender proceedings. He has been lead counsel in over fifteen dangerous offender hearings (there are typically around 280 inmates deemed to be a “dangerous offender” in Canada at any given time). In this respect, he presented on the “Dangerous Offenders” panel at the 2022 Defence Counsel Association Criminal Law Conference. Such proceedings are considered to be the epitome of complex litigation in criminal law.
While the practice is focussed in Ottawa, he also accepts cases from Renfrew, Pembroke, Smith Falls, Perth, Brockville, Kemptville, Cornwall, Morrisburg, Kingston, Napanee, Belleville and Toronto. On a select basis, he accepts cases from further jurisdictions in Ontario (Atikokan, Thunderbay, Sudbury), and criminal trials in Quebec by way of Certificate of Special Permission.
Mr. Lewandowski is selective with the cases he accepts. He keeps his client roster small so that he can devote significant resources to each individual case.