In considering the extent to which the evidence of prior discreditable conduct supports the inference that the complainant’s allegation is true, I am of the view that the dissimilarities referred to by defence counsel do weaken the probative value of the proposed evidence. However, the proposed evidence has some probative value even in the absence of consistent similarities in the psychological and physical setting of the acts alleged or how they were carried out. The context is familial, with a person occupying a position of some authority preying on younger members of the household he shared with them. But as noted by Charron J.A. in R. v. B.(L); R v. G.(M.A.), supra, at para. 50 when addressing the matter of prejudice: ...it is important to keep in mind what is meant by prejudice in this context. It is the effect this kind of evidence may have in compelling a trier of fact to find the accused guilty not on the strength of the evidence marshalled against him in relation to the offence with which he is charged, but on the strength of the evidence of his bad character. Therefore, it follows that, in general, the higher the probative value of the evidence, the lesser the prejudicial effect. Conversely, any weaknesses which have been identified in the course of assessing the probative value of the evidence will generally increase the prejudicial effect.
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