Canada's Crown Counsel

Stand up for you.

We work hard every day to safeguard your rights and freedoms and ensure our government respects the rule of law.

We are Canada’s Crown Counsel.

Government of Canada lawyers and Crown prosecutors are proud to serve and protect Canadians. The core values of fairness and respect for the rule of law are at the heart of everything we stand for.

Every day, we apply our legal expertise to a wide variety of legal issues on behalf of Canadians, from commercial contracts to prosecuting drug busts. We untangle complex legal issues, give unbiased advice, and we speak truth to power.

We choose public service because we care deeply about safeguarding Canadians' rights and freedoms and appreciate its importance for all Canadians.

We work with integrity and independence.

We work for all Canadians. We ensure our advice and actions are in your best interest.

We care about justice and what it means to you.

We believe in a just Canada. It is at the heart of what we all value as Canadians. As Canada's Crown Counsel, we are protectors of a fair justice system.

We do the most complex and unique legal work in Canada.

This important work requires the best and the brightest legal minds. We are proud of the expertise within Canada's Crown Counsel.

Our Work.

Canada’s Crown Counsel work for the government of Canada at the Department of Justice, the Public Prosecution Service of Canada, and in the legal departments of federal agencies, tribunals and courts across the country.

We serve Canadians by negotiating treaties and agreements on behalf of Canada. We draft legislation, litigate in many complex areas, including immigration, extradition, customs and revenue, and national security, and we prosecute criminal offences.

Meet some of our members


Mark Searl

Location: Ontario
Practice Area: Human Rights
Years Active: 1

Mark Searl is a lawyer in the Human Rights Law Section at the Department of Justice Canada. He advises the Government of Canada on matters involving the application of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the Canadian Human Rights Act, and international human rights law.

One of the things that Mark values most about being a Federal Crown counsel is that the basis for his work is something that all Canadians believe in – the fundamental importance of human rights. Mark’s primary function as a Crown counsel is to give impartial advice on whether the government’s actions are consistent with Canada’s human rights obligations.

“We as Canadians share a commitment to human rights principles and we expect them to be upheld.”

Mark isn’t just doing his job when he’s giving legal advice, he’s standing for our human rights.


Sarah Arngna’naaq

Location: Nunavut
Practice Area: Criminal Prosecution
Years Active: 10

Sarah Arngna’naaq works as a federal prosecutor in the remote Kitikmeot Region of Nunavut which requires her to regularly fly on small planes to towns and hamlets that do not have roads connecting them to the rest of Canada. There are no courthouses, instead courtrooms are usually set-up in community centres right before court and broken down again right after. In Canada’s North, federal prosecutors are responsible for prosecuting almost all criminal offences. So, while the work can include anything from immigration enforcement to environmental protection, much of Sarah’s work is focused on prosecuting violent crime.

“In the small communities, most people know who’s there as part of the court. I hope that we are really helping people through our work.”

An Inuk woman, Sarah spent her childhood in Yellowknife and has family ties to Baker Lake, Nunavut. She says this experience gives her a personal connection to her cases. Sarah hopes that her work will make her a role model for young Inuit, so that they are inspired to also work in law. She keeps our Justice system strong.


David Schermbrucker

Location: Nova Scotia
Practice Area: National Security
Years Active: 20

David Schermbrucker has worked as a lawyer for 30 years, spending the last 20 years as a Crown prosecutor. Much of his work focuses on national security and terrorism, including providing advice to police officers to ensure they have legal grounds for their investigation and helping them take advantage of all the tools available to protect public safety. David has also previously argued cases in front of the Supreme Court of Canada.

For David, one of the most rewarding parts of the job has been the ability to make the institutions of the justice system fairer from the inside. David does a lot of work teaching police officers, including a course on search warrants.

“I have seen hard evidence that people who went through that intensive course write better warrants leading to both more effective investigations and greater respect for the law.”

As a crown prosecutor, David takes his job very seriously because his client is the Canadian public. That means he must focus on getting the fairest outcome for all Canadians – he’s not pursuing a case “to win”, but to get to the truth, whatever that may be. He is proud to be protecting the safety of his community. He’s a champion of fairness.