Toronto ramming attacker appeals conviction
The attack left 10 dead and 16 injured in Toronto in 2018; a pedestrian succumbed to his injuries three and a half years later.
Police officers at the scene of the tragedy, shortly after the ram truck attack on April 23, 2018.
In Toronto, Alek Minassian's defense filed an appeal this week in Ontario's highest court to challenge his client's guilty verdict and sentencing. The individual was sentenced last June to life without the right to parole for 25 years.
In an email, the lawyer for Alek Minassian, Boris Bytensky declined to comment, but a notice of appeal, of which Radio-Canada obtained a copy, confirms his intention to appeal.
L& #x27;Toronto Ram Truck Attack Convicted
According to the document, Me Bytensky explains that the trial judge erred in law, or in fact and in law, regarding the interviews between the clinical experts and her client, which had been carried out in detention.
The defense points out that the recorded interviews were not reviewed by defense experts for trial and that the judge should have ordered that the recordings be disclosed to the court. #x27;respondent before the start of hearings.
Alek Minassian's lawyer, Boris Bytensky
According to Mr. Bytensky, the trial judge [moreover] misinterpreted the testimony of a defense expert who was available to her and that she made unreasonable conclusions by accepting said testimony, before refuse to find the respondent not criminally responsible for his actions.
He therefore asks the Court of Appeal to appeal and quash the verdict of guilty and replaced by a verdict of not criminally responsible. In the event of refusal, he enjoins him to order the holding of a new trial.
The mental health of the defendant was at the center of the trial which was held online during the winter of 2020-2021 in Toronto.
In its verdict of March 3, 2021 , Ontario Superior Court Judge Anne Molloy had ruled that Alek Minassian was of sound mind at the time of the attack as claimed by the Crown.
The magistrate, however, did not believe that the murderer belonged to the group of Incels, these misogynistic and sexually frustrated men who attack women because of their condition.
Judge Anne Molloy had read her judgment live on Youtube during the pandemic.
At the time, Mr. Bytensky argued that his client should not be held criminally responsible for his actions because he has had autism since he was five years old.
The expert he had called to the stand said that there are cases of autism in the case law abroad which are linked to insanity.
A position that had created controversy among groups of parents of autistic children and organizations that help them.
Crown Attorney John Rinaldi at the trial of 'Alek Minassian
The Crown argued, on the contrary, that Alek Minassian had failed the test of not being criminally responsible and that he did not meet the tests. criteria within the meaning of the Canadian Criminal Code.
The judge agreed with him, rejecting out of hand the thesis that the defense was not criminally responsible.
The recent Supreme Court of Canada in the spring on the constitutionality of consecutive sentencing also did not permit the Crown to seek a harsher punishment than a 25-year sentence.
Alek Minassian's sentencing hearing had been delayed due to the case of Alexandre Bissonnette, the Quebec mosque killer, in the nation's highest court.
Alek Minassian, in November 2020, had attended his trial from the Toronto South Detention Center, pandemic requires.< /p>
In her sentencing, Judge Molloy said her hands were tied by the Bissonnette decision, said she understood those who were demanding justice by demanding a harsher sentence against Alek Minassian.
She insisted, however, that a firm 25-year sentence did not mean that Alek Minassian would be released from prison in 25 years, but that he was only allowed to apply for release conditional in 24 years (you must remove the year that has elapsed since the guilty verdict, editor's note).
Strong emotions at the hearing on the determination of Alek Minassian's sentence
She explained that it will be up to the Parole Board of Canada to decide whether or not to release him.
Alek Minassian began his sentence at Millhaven Penitentiary near Kingston.