Marie Henein

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Marie Henein
Born1966 (age 52–53)
Cairo, Egypt
Alma materOsgoode Hall Law School (LLB)
Columbia Law School (LLM)
OccupationCriminal lawyer, defence attorney
Years active1992–present
Spouse(s)Glen Jennings

Marie Henein (born 1966)[1] is a Canadian criminal defense lawyer. She is a partner of Henein Hutchison LLP, a law firm in Toronto.

Early life[edit]

Henein was born in Cairo, Egypt, to Lebanese Maronite parents. Her father, Joseph Henein, worked at a pharmacy. After briefly moving to Vancouver, then less than a year later to Lebanon, the family finally settled in Toronto when Marie was four years old.[2] She attended St. Joseph's Morrow Park Catholic Secondary School.[3]


Henein attended Osgoode Hall Law School, where she graduated with a Bachelor of Laws (LL.B.) degree.[3] After graduating, Henein articled under noted criminal defence lawyer Edward Greenspan.[3] She then attended Columbia Law School, and received her Master of Laws (LL.M.) degree in 1991.[4] Henein was called to the bar in 1992.[4]

Legal career[edit]

She was later rehired at Edward Greenspan's firm after working with his partner, Marc Rosenberg.[3] She eventually was named a partner of the firm in 1998.[3] In 2002, Henein left to open Henein and Associates.[4] The firm later was renamed as Henein Hutchinson LLP after former crown attorney Scott Hutchison joined the firm as a named partner.[3] After Hutchison joined, Henein hired an advertising agency whose campaign for the firm included a "photo shoot that might have been orchestrated by Vanity Fair" and "some critics sniff that it smacks of an ad for an HBO legal series".[5]

Henein has developed a reputation in Toronto as one of the most "respected and feared criminal lawyers in the country."[3] The National Post called her the "most high profile criminal defence lawyer in the country."[2] In 2011, Canadian Lawyer magazine named her one of the "Top 25 Most Influential" saying she was "one of the most sought-after criminal lawyers in the country" and "a key go-to lawyer for high-profile accused in Toronto."[6]

Notable cases[edit]

In 1998, with Greenspan, Henein defended Nova Scotia premier Gerald Regan on sexual-misconduct charges. The Supreme Court of Canada denied Regan's appeal, but he was ultimately acquitted of all charges.[3][7]

In her first case at her own firm, Henein defended Daniel Weiz, who was one of the young men charged in the 1999 death by beating of Toronto teen Dmitri Baranovski. Weiz was acquitted of all charges.[4]

In 2008, Henein defended hockey agent David Frost, who was acquitted of the charges of sexual exploitation.[4] Frost called her "my shark."[3]

Henein represented Marvin Sazant, a Toronto doctor accused of tying up several young boys and repeatedly forcing sex on them. In 2009 the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario revoked Sazant's licence "concluding that in three of the four cases, the allegations had been proved".[8][9]

In 2009, Henein represented Bradley Harrison at the Supreme Court of Canada. The charges of possession of 35 kilograms of cocaine (worth about $4 million) were dropped.[4]

Henein represented former Ontario attorney general Michael Bryant after he was charged with criminal negligence causing death and dangerous driving causing death after his car struck a bike courier. On May 25, 2010, all charges against Bryant were withdrawn.[7][10] Bryant said she "seemed to channel Hannibal Lecter."[3]

In 2011 Henein's client John Magno received a twelve-year sentence in connection with an arson resulting in a death and one of the largest fires in Toronto's history "forcing the evacuation of 50 nearby homes on Danforth Avenue and requiring the services of more than 170 firefighters."[11][12]

In November 2014, former CBC radio host Jian Ghomeshi hired Henein to defend him.[13][3] He was charged in four cases of sexual assault and one case of choking a woman. The first trial of Ghomeshi began on February 1, 2016.[14] The trial lasted eight days.[15] On 24 March 2016, the judge delivered the verdict. Ghomeshi was acquitted of all charges, on the basis that there was insufficient evidence to establish proof beyond a reasonable doubt.[16][17]

Personal life[edit]

Her brother Peter Henein is a lawyer with firm, Cassels Brock.[18] She is married to Glen Jennings, a lawyer who heads the white collar defence and investigations group at the law firm Gowlings. They have two sons.[19]


  1. ^ Wente, Margaret. "The Jian Ghomeshi Case: A System on Trial". In Globe and Mail. 26 March 2016. "At 50, Marie Henein is at the top of her game." p. F1
  2. ^ a b Jen Gerson (26 November 2014), "'It is not my practice to litigate my cases in the media': Who is Jian Ghomeshi's lawyer Marie Henein?", National Post.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k McDonald, Marci (20 October 2015), "Meet Marie Henein, Jian Ghomeshi's lawyer", Toronto Life, retrieved 2016-02-14.
  4. ^ a b c d e f BACKGROUNDER: Criminal lawyer Marie Henein and her high profile cases. 680 News, November 4, 2014.
  5. ^ [1]
  6. ^ "The Top 25 Most Influential". Canadian Lawyer, August 1, 2011.
  7. ^ a b Jill Colvin, Bryant fate in hands of 'lawyer's lawyer', Globe & Mail (September 5, 2009).
  8. ^ Doctor accused of sex abuse has licence revoked. The Globe and Mail, September 4, 2009.
  9. ^ Doctor who forced sex on boys loses licence. Toronto Sun, September 5, 2009.
  10. ^ "Charges against Bryant in fatal crash withdrawn". CBC News. 2010-05-25. Retrieved 2014-05-26.
  11. ^ John Magno sentenced to 12 years in prison in fatal arson scheme. The Globe and Mail, September 23, 2011.
  12. ^ Crown seeks 10 years for Toronto man behind fatal east-end arson in 2001. The Globe and Mail, August 8, 2011.
  13. ^ Cohen, Sidney (November 5, 2014). "Jian Ghomeshi hires lawyer who defended ex-attorney general Michael Bryant". Toronto Star. Retrieved November 5, 2014.
  14. ^ Gollom, Mark (February 1, 2016). "Jian Ghomeshi was 'punching me in the head, multiple times,' witness says". CBC News. Retrieved February 2, 2016.
  15. ^ Houpt, Simon; White, Patrick. "The Jian Ghomeshi trial: What you missed in court". Globe and Mail. Retrieved 28 February 2016.
  16. ^ Hasham, Alyshah; King, Robin Levinson (2016-03-24). "The former CBC Radio host pleaded not guilty to four counts of sexual assault and one count of choking to overcome resistance". The Toronto Star. ISSN 0319-0781. Retrieved 2016-03-25.
  17. ^
  18. ^ "Meet Marie Henein, the 'fearless and brilliant' lawyer defending Jian Ghomeshi", CBC News, 27 November 2014.
  19. ^ Jacques Gallant, "Jian Ghomeshi lawyer Marie Henein doesn’t relish spotlight", Toronto Star, 13 February 2016.

External links[edit]