Morgentaler charged with conspiracy to commit abortion

Announcement Date: 1970

Dr Henry Morgentaler’s Montreal office is raided by the police and he is charged with conspiracy to perform an abortion in June 1970. Between 1970 and 1975, Dr. Morgentaler receives more than 10 criminal charges.

In November 1973, a Montreal jury of 11 men and one woman acquit Morgentaler. In an unprecedented move, the Quebec Court of Appeal overturns the jury verdict and finds Morgentaler guilty in 1974. The doctor appeals his case to the Supreme Court of Canada. In 1975, the court votes 6-3 to uphold the Quebec Court’s conviction and Morgentaler is sentenced to eighteen months in prison. While serving his sentence, he is tried on a second charge. A jury acquits him again, and the Quebec Court of Appeal upholds that acquittal.