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Archive for July, 2020

Justice for Jake and Morris

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Update on Court Proceedings on Métis Hunters Murder Charges

July 29, 2020 (Edmonton)– The family of the victims of the two men jointly charged with the murders of Morris Cardinal and Jake Sansom were relieved today when Justice Goss denied bail to the second accused in Edmonton Court of Queen’s Bench. The first man to be charged had already been denied bail on June 16th by another Judge of the same Court.

The two accused are now in jail and next make a Court appearance at 9:30 am on August 13 at St Paul Provincial Court when a preliminary hearing date should be set or the case sent to the Court of Queen’s Bench to set a trial date in that Court. At the last Provincial Court appearance in St. Paul, the Crown announced that they expect the Attorney-General to consent to the Crown proceeding by direct indictment.

A direct indictment is a procedure whereby the Crown prosecutor sends the case directly to a trial without the accused being able to have a preliminary hearing. A preliminary hearing is a court hearing where a Provincial Court Judge determines if there is enough evidence to have a case go to trial.

The accused who was denied bail in June is also scheduled to appear at 9:30 a.m. on August 13th in the Alberta Court of Appeal in Edmonton seeking approval from that Court to hear an appeal of the June bail denial. If the Court of Appeal allows his application, a date would be fixed for the actual hearing of the bail appeal probably in the fall.

Statement from Audrey Poitras, President of Métis Nation of Alberta on criminal charges laid against Dwayne Roth

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Edmonton, Alberta – July 29, 2020 – Audrey Poitras, President of the Métis Nation of Alberta condemns, in the strongest of terms, all forms of bullying, violence, sexual assault, coercion and manipulation of anyone by individuals in positions of power.

As information has come to light about sexual assault charges laid by the RCMP against Mr. Dwayne Roth, CEO of the Fort McKay Métis Group Ltd., the MNA offers its support to the Métis women who have bravely come forward to share their stories. They deserve to be heard, and, much more importantly, supported and believed. Sexual assault, violence, bullying and abuse of power have no place within the Métis Nation or Canadian society as a whole.

While the MNA will not be further commenting on the specifics of the charges laid against Mr. Roth, these issues need to be raised and addressed within our communities and the Métis Nation as a whole.  Very often Métis women and girls are put in positions where they are forced to remain silent because of pressures from our communities and existing power structures as well as systemic and institutional biases.  

In the #MeToo era, it is more important than ever that victims are supported as they come forward to identify these repulsive and unacceptable behaviours and share their experiences. This type of conduct has been common in our society for far too long. Our people, communities and Nation need to work together to create safety for girls and women who have endured abuse as well as change the power structures that allow this sort of abuse to continue, including within Métis communities and the Métis Nation. 

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Contact:
Jeri Brown, Media Profile
416-455-7188

Justice for Jake and Morris: Status of Court Proceedings on Murder Charges

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On July 16, the two men jointly charged with the murders of Morris Cardinal and Jake Sansom appeared at St. Paul Provincial Court. The charges were in Court for the setting of preliminary hearing dates. 

At the hearing, the Crown announced that they expect the Justice and Solicitor General to consent to the Crown proceeding by direct indictment. This is a procedure whereby the Crown prosecutor sends the case directly to a trial without the accused being able to have a preliminary hearing. A preliminary hearing is a court hearing where a Provincial Court Judge determines if there is enough evidence to have a case go to trial.

The two accused next appear at 9:30 am on August 13 at St. Paul Provincial Court when a preliminary hearing date should be set, or the case sent to the Court of Queen’s Bench to set a trial date in that Court.

One of the two accused was denied bail on June 16 and the other accused is expected to apply for bail in Edmonton Court of Queen’s Bench at 10:00 a.m. on July 29.