Charles Lugosi


Breaking News: 

Dr. Lugosi is now an Associate with a Victoria BC law firm, Crease Harman LLP

Dr. Lugosi is pleased to offer his legal services from his office in Victoria BC with respect to both Canadian and American law to help resolve any dispute, case or controversy. For a limited time, Dr. Lugosi's office in Brantford will remain open to serve Ontario and Michigan clients.

Charles Imre Michael-John Lugosi was born in Brantford Ontario Canada and attended North Park Collegiate and Vocational School where he completed 4 years of high school in 3 and graduated as an Ontario Scholar. He attended the University of Western Ontario, where he completed two years of Social Science studies towards his Honors Bachelor of Arts degree, and was named to the Dean’s Honor List for both years. Dr. Lugosi was then admitted to law school at Western at the age of 20, one of the youngest in his class.

After graduating, Dr. Lugosi articled in downtown Toronto with Hicks Morley Hamilton Stewart Storie, Canada’s leading management labor law firm.  Following his admission to the Ontario Bar on April 9, 1981 Dr. Lugosi moved to Vancouver British Columbia and articled with the firm of Russell & DuMoulin (now Fasken, Martineau and DuMoulin LLP) and was admitted to the BC Bar on May 11, 1982.  After he survived a life-threatening illness in 1983, Dr. Lugosi opened in 1984 his own law firm in Victoria BC, where he first worked as a junior Crown counsel, then as a residential tenancy arbitrator and as a general litigation counsel in private practice, until he left his growing five person firm in 1988 to study theology at Regent College in Vancouver.

After interning in American constitutional law focusing on the First Amendment with the Rutherford Institute in Charlottesville Virginia in 1990, Dr. Lugosi moved to Prince George, BC where he achieved province wide success as a criminal defense lawyer and as a general litigation counsel.  From 1990-2000, Dr. Lugosi achieved acquittals (6), reduced verdicts (11), new trials (2), stays (5) out of 27 homicide cases he defended (88.8% success rate). Dr. Lugosi became a prominent criminal lawyer throughout British Columbia and achieved a national reputation as an appellate attorney, when he won the Feeney case in the Supreme Court of Canada.  That case resulted in a new law barring police entry into private dwellings without a search warrant.

As well, in the area of medical malpractice, Dr. Lugosi formed a team with former BC Justice and former provincial NDP leader, Tom Berger, and together after over several years of work, they achieved a record infant settlement on behalf of Ximena Renaerts, who survived an attempted abortion and suffered brain damage when she was abandoned by medical staff at the Vancouver General Hospital and left to die. Dr. Lugosi is a Life Member, of the Million-Dollar Advocates Forum (membership limited to trial lawyers who have demonstrated exceptional skill, experience and excellence in advocacy by achieving a verdict, award or settlement in the amount of one million dollars or more).

In 1997, Dr. Lugosi was defeated in the federal election when he was the candidate for the Progressive Conservative Party of Canada for Prince-George Peace River riding, losing to the Reform Party candidate.

In 2000, Dr. Lugosi closed his law office in Prince George to attend the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, where he earned a Master of Law (2001), a Master of Bioethics (2002), and completed his Doctor of Juridical Science (2005), the highest degree in law awarded by U Penn, while working as a law professor in Florida. Dr. Lugosi was the recipient of the Potts Scholarship during the time he was working on his dissertation. Dr. Lugosi completed his bioethics clinical internship, in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit, at the famous Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Dr. Lugosi also worked for one of Philadelphia’s best criminal appellate attorneys, white-collar crime specialist, Peter Goldberger.

Dr. Lugosi first began teaching law students at Western in London, Ontario and then over the next eight years, at various law schools in Florida, Michigan and Tennessee.  Dr. Lugosi has taught: criminal law; criminal procedure; constitutional law; the rule of law (in the context of international law); jurisprudence; property law (including land claims, environmental law, and real estate); tort law (including negligence, libel, slander, nuisance, trespass); healthcare law; and bioethics to law students, and business organizations and ethics to undergraduate students at Laurier Brantford.

Dr. Lugosi was awarded in 2006 an Academic Fellowship by the Foundation for the Defense of Democracy, requiring travel to Israel to attend lectures, visit classified facilities, and learn from top academics, diplomats, military officers, and intelligence agents.

In a span of 5 years, Dr. Lugosi published 14 scholarly articles in law reviews, at first tier law schools, including those at Stanford, Georgetown, St. Louis, Temple and Texas. His doctoral dissertation was published in a special edition of Issues in Law & Medicine. Topics of articles include: abortion; the 14th Amendment; euthanasia; separating conjoined twins, habeas corpus, legal history, enemy combatants, religious freedom, freedom of speech, corporate personhood, natural justice, exonerating the factually innocent, and the rule of law.

While a visiting associate professor of law in Ann Arbor Michigan, Dr. Lugosi organized a team of students and lawyers to help him represent Julie Baumer, who was wrongfully convicted of first-degree child abuse, and was serving time in jail after losing all her appeals. At the hearing before the original trial judge, Dr. Lugosi introduced conclusive medical evidence from New Zealand and Washington State by Skype (a first for the State of Michigan) that proved the victim suffered a stroke from natural causes and that his client was factually innocent of child abuse. At the new trial, University of Michigan law students from the Innocence Clinic played the roles of Dr. Lugosi and his expert witnesses, by reading in the transcripts, as Dr. Lugosi moved away to teach law in Tennessee. The jury acquitted Julie Baumer of all charges.  The New York Times, 60 Minutes and PBS all reported on her historic struggle to be exonerated.

Dr. Lugosi’s unique credentials authorize him to practice in both the United States and Canada:  Admitted to the Law Society of Upper Canada (Ontario) April 9, 1981; Admitted to the Law Society of British Columbia, May 11, 1982; Admitted to Michigan State Bar, May 7, 2007; Admitted to United States District Court, Eastern District Michigan, June 25, 2007; United States District Court, Western District Michigan, August 20, 2009; United States Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit, August 20, 2009; Supreme Court of the United States, October 4, 2010; United States Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit, February 6, 2012; and Washington State Bar, September 23, 2013.

Dr. Lugosi researched and drafted the winning arguments in three amicus briefs filed in the Supreme Court of the United States by The Rutherford Institute, a civil liberties organization. Dr. Lugosi’s arguments were adopted by SCOTUS in Florida v. Joelis Jardines, Florida v. Harris and Kim Millbrook v. United States of America.

As an associate partner at the Windsor Ontario law firm of Sutts Strosberg, LLP, from 2006-2007, Dr. Lugosi created the winning arguments in a novel claim in Driskell v. Dangerfield, to establish civil liability of prosecutors and police for negligence. Dr. Lugosi gained experience in multi-million dollar class actions and various tort claims involving commercial litigation, e-commerce, and defamation law.

Since July 1, 2012, Dr. Lugosi has represented clients from his base in Brantford, Ontario as a litigation lawyer, in the areas of constitutional law, tort law, commercial litigation, tax litigation, labor law, family law and criminal law.  Recently, Dr. Lugosi led a court battle in Toronto to declare unconstitutional the power of Parliament to decide who is and who is not a human being. He was the lead defense lawyer in a high profile case that defeated a multi-million dollar class action that was intended to suppress dissenters who exercised their freedom of speech, expressing opposing viewpoints at the Toronto Pride Parade, a public political event participated in and supported by the Liberal Parties of Canada and Ontario.

Dr. Lugosi is a legal architect, able to use creativity, vision, education and experience to understand, analyze, explain and solve complex and novel legal issues. He has actively contributed to winning submissions and cases before both the United States and the Canadian Supreme Courts, a rare accomplishment.

Dr. Lugosi has given presentations and lectures at numerous international law conferences and public events, and appeared as a guest on Canadian national television programs hosted by Ezra Levant and David Mainse, where he was interviewed about his legal work.

Before he left Victoria in 1988, Dr. Lugosi was very active in the local community. He was: the co-founder and provider of free general legal advice to the poor on a bi-weekly basis from 1983 – 1988 at the James Bay Community Centre, Victoria, B.C.; the volunteer legal counsel to a non-smokers rights society, Airspace, in Victoria from 1983 – 1988; the co-founder and volunteer legal counsel to Students Against Drunk Driving, Victoria 1986 – 1988; the initiator and volunteer duty counsel for Sunday morning legal services in Victoria for detained indigent persons from 1984-1988; an unpaid director of the Canadian-Hungarian Society of Vancouver Island, from 1987 – 1989; an unpaid director, of the B.C. Triathlon Association, 1986; the creator, organizer and chair, of the first Conference for Parents and Teens on Drug and Alcohol Abuse, at the University of Victoria, Victoria, B.C., in 1986; and a volunteer counselor, visiting hospital cancer patients, from 1985-1988.

Today Dr. Lugosi is an avid golfer and devoted to raising his five young children. He enjoys the outdoors and coaches basketball. He is a student of genealogy and enjoys traveling.

(Please note: Past results are not necessarily indicative of future results.  Litigation outcomes will differ depending upon the unique facts of each case.)

History of Lugosi Law Firm

In July of 2012, Charles Lugosi returned to his hometown, Brantford, Ontario, Canada to resume his practice of Canadian law as a sole practitioner under the business name, Lugosi Law Firm.  Before relocating to the United States to attend graduate school, and work as a law professor, Charles was a busy criminal lawyer defending clients charged with murder throughout British Columbia.  Many people charged with murder delayed their cases to have Charles represent them, as he was one of the most sought after and successful murder defense lawyers in British Columbia.

Of counsel to the firm, is retired lawyer and former bencher, Professor of Law, Emeritus, Robert I. Martin, B.A. (Royal Military College), LL.B. University of Toronto) LL.M. (University of London) and Hon. Fellow, Trinity College, Dublin. Professor Martin is the recipient of both the Gold and Diamond Jubilee medals awarded by Queen Elizabeth II.  In 2015 the Chief Justice of Kenya traveled to Canada to present Professor Martin with a special award from the Law Society of Kenya to recognize his academic achievements and his significant contributions to the rule of law in Africa. 

From April 3, 2014, until March 1, 2017, Charles practiced in association with Kathy Tomaszewski, an Ontario lawyer, a sole and independent contractor.  Kathy graduated in 1980 from the University of Western Ontario law school.  She was the gold medalist, earning the highest academic average cumulatively attained over three years of law school studies. Kathy clerked in the Supreme Court of Canada, for the late Chief Justice of Canada, Bora Laskin from 1980-1981, and then attended Harvard Law School, earning her Masters of Law, graduating in 1982.  Kathy was then invited to join the Faculty of Law at the University of Western Ontario as a full-time professor of law, where, for the next 10 years, she taught a variety of subjects, including constitutional law, corporate law, securities regulations, commercial law, and secured transactions.  Kathy was admitted to practice law in Ontario in 1984.  Kathy has focused on commercial law and since 2017 is now committed to her own full time Toronto based practice.

On June 21, 2016, Dr. Nikolay Kovalev, Ph.D. (law) (Queen's, Belfast, N. Ireland) , LL.M. (Indiana) B.A. (law)(West Kazakhstan), who completed his articles under the supervision of Charles, joined the firm, as an independent contractor.  Nick continues his employment as a tenured criminology professor at Laurier's Brantford's campus.  Nick limits his practice to criminal law trials and appeals.

Charles was admitted to practice law in Ontario in 1981 and was admitted to practice law in British Columbia in 1982. Charles joined the American Trial Lawyers Association in 1981 and began practicing criminal law in 1983 as a prosecutor and soon assisted on major kidnapping and murder cases.  By 1988 Charles owned his own general litigation practice in Victoria BC and starting in 1988 was included in Who's Who in Canada. In 1990 Charles began his province wide law murder defense practice and defended numerous defendants in Victoria, Vancouver, Kelowna, Prince George, Penticton, Cranbrook, Quesnel, Williams Lake, Terrace, Smithers, and Fort St. John, obtaining acquittals, reduced verdicts, or dismissals in 89% of 35 homicide and sexual assault cases defended from 1990-2000.  Charles became a prominent criminal lawyer throughout British Columbia and achieved a national reputation as an appellate attorney when he narrowly won the Feeney case in the Supreme Court of Canada.  

In 2000, Charles closed his office in Prince George BC to attend an Ivy league school, the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, where he earned three graduate degrees, including two in law (a masters degree and a doctorate in juridical science (equivalent of a PhD), and worked with one of Philadelphia's best lawyers, leading criminal appellate attorney, former professor Peter Goldberger Esq., whose practice focuses on white collar crime. Charles, (now known as Dr. Lugosi, having earned a doctoral degree in law), then became a law professor, teaching first at Western's law school in London, Ontario and then at ABA accredited law schools in Florida and Michigan. Charles taught criminal law, criminal procedure, constitutional law, the Rule of Law (in the context of international law), jurisprudence, property law (including land claims, environmental law, and real estate), tort law (including negligence, libel, slander, nuisance, trespass) healthcare law, and bioethics.  Charles' publications about enemy combatants, criminal law, habeas corpus, constitutional law, and the rule of law were of valuable assistance to appellate counsel in the United States who used Charles' arguments before the United States Supreme Court in the cases of Hamdi and Hamdan.

In 2007, Charles created the winning legal arguments used by Harvey Strosberg QC to defeat the attempt by lawyers for prosecutors and the police to stop a civil law suit that claimed a wrongful murder conviction of James Driskell resulted from negligent omission to disclose evidence.  Judge Greenberg agreed with Charles' analysis that there is no statutory or common law immunity for the tort claims against prosecutors and the police, and that it was up to the trial judge after hearing all the evidence, to decide whether a cause of action in negligence lies against Crown attorneys. The defendants avoided trial and settled Driskell's claims for millions of dollars.  

Charles decided to join the Michigan Bar while a visiting law professor at the Ave Maria School of Law in Ann Arbor, and involved some of his students in a volunteer appeal project which resulted in the freeing of Julie Baumer, a factually innocent person from prison. On November 20, 2009, Judge James Biernat Jr. granted the petition filed on behalf of Julie Baumer and ordered a new trial. Charles was joined in this appeal by other attorneys, including prominent Macomb County former prosecutor and defense attorney Carl J. Marlinga.  On October 15, 2010 Carl Marlinga's able representation of Julie Baumer, with the assistance of Dave Moran and law students from the Innocence Clinic at the University of Michigan, successfully obtained an acquittal of all charges at Julie Baumer's retrial. A key part of the retrial was the reading in of irrefutable medical evidence put on the record by Charles who used Skype technology at a prior proceeding before the original trial judge. 

On March 26, 2013 the United States Supreme Court in Florida v. Jardines accepted the legal argument Charles created in an Amicus Brief he authored on behalf of the Rutherford Institute.  The Court ruled that in the absence of a search warrant, a police officer commits trespass at the front door of a private residence when a trained police dog is used as an investigative tool to detect any potentially criminal activity inside that home, thereby committing an unconstitutional search, contrary to the Fourth Amendment. Like his victory in the Supreme Court of Canada in R. v. Feeney, another search case involving state intrusion into a private residence, this too was a narrow 5:4 victory in the U.S. Supreme Court. 

On March 27, 2013 the United States Supreme Court in Millbrook v. United States accepted the legal argument Charles advanced in an Amicus Brief he authored on behalf of the Rutherford Institute. The Court agreed with Charles that prison guards are not immune from intentional torts, such as sexual assault, forced upon helpless prisoners.  In reaching this decision, the Court overruled lower courts that misinterpreted the text of the relevant section of the Federal Torts Claim Act, and adopted Charles' interpretation of the law. The decision was unanimous.

Charles' credentials authorize him to practice in British Columbia, Ontario and the Supreme Court of Canada and enable him to be authorized to practice in every Canadian province except Quebec. Charles is authorized to practice in Michigan state and its federal courts, Washington state, the Sixth and Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, and the Supreme Court of the United States.  Charles is a former member of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL), and the Federal Bar Association.  Charles maintains a law office in Chelsea Michigan to serve clients who live in the United States.

Over the past five years, Charles has defended clients in Brantford and Toronto charged with committing crimes.  He has provided legal opinions in the area of labor law concerning the merger of unions, and in family law concerning the merits of appealing decisions. He is the lead defense lawyer in a Toronto multi-million dollar class action suit involving freedom of speech and defamation law. Charles is known nationally for his skills in litigation and has represented clients from British Columbia to New Brunswick at all levels of court, including the Supreme Court of Canada. Charles takes on just a limited number of new cases so he can devote his time to complex matters that have legal issues of national significance.

Please call 1-519-761-7000 to speak with Charles and ask him to schedule an initial consultation at a discounted rate.  Charles will decide if he or Nick will assist you.  Charles does house calls for people with limited mobility, and visits clients in jails. Please remember, just talking to one of us does not mean we represent you. A written retainer agreement is always required, as well as a substantial retainer is paid up front before any work is done. See the drop down menu labeled Fee Schedule to find out what we charge.

JURY TRIALS AND APPEALS

CRIMINAL LAW (Murder Defense, Sexual Offenses, Conspiracies)

CONSTITUTIONAL LAW (Life, Liberty, Conscience, Speech, Police)

FAMILY LAW (Child Protection, Custody, Divorce)

CIVIL LITIGATION (Defamation, Class Actions, Negligence, Torts)

ADMINISTRATIVE LAW (Human Rights, Boards, Tribunals)

LABOR LAW (Sexual Harassment, Wrongful Dismissal, Union Duties)

COMMERCIAL LITIGATION (business disputes)

1-519-761-7000


PAST RESULTS ARE NOT NECESSARILY INDICATIVE OF FUTURE RESULTS.  LITIGATION OUTCOMES WILL DIFFER DEPENDING UPON THE UNIQUE FACTS OF EACH CASE.









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