Verdict in Criminal Trials of Frack Protesters in Moncton

20 06 2014

MONCTON•A Moncton judge will give his verdict next week in the trial of two shale gas protesters who have been in custody since Oct. 17. 

Germain Jr. Breau, of Upper Rexton, and Aaron Rene Francis, of Eskasoni in Nova Scotia,both 21,stood trial over several weeks in March, April and May and final arguments in the case were heard May 15. Judge Leslie Jackson adjourned his verdict until Thursday,but the matter was adjourned again till next Thursday. 

Francis is charged with having intent to do bodily harm by causing an explosive device to explode, placing or throwing at or on a person an explosive substance, possession of explosives while prohibited to do so, committing an offence while having his face masked and possession of a firearm for a dangerous purpose. 

Breau is charged with possession of a firearm for a dangerous purpose, obstructing a police officer, five counts of pointing an Enfield rifle at four different RCMP officers and five counts of assaulting five different police officers with a rifle. 

At the beginning of the trial, Francis pleaded guilty to obstructing a police officer, resisting arrest, assaulting members of the RCMP’s Emergency Response Team,breach of probation,handling an Enfield rifle in a careless manner and breaching a court order to not possess firearms. He also pleaded guilty to assaulting a correctional officer at the Southeast Regional Correctional Centre in Shediac on Oct.19,and another charge of breach of probation. 

The Crown withdrew seven charges, including mischief, obstructing police, unlawful confinement and firearms offences. 

Breau pleaded guilty to holding a firearm in a careless manner, threatening to kill Cpl. Rick Tessier and breach of probation. The Crown withdrew two counts of threatening police and two firearms charges. 

Remi Allard and Maurice Blanchard are prosecuting the case while Gilles Lemieux and Alison Menard are defending the accused.





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