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Lawyer for accused in ammo switch to N.S. shooter criticizes lack of disclosure

HALIFAX – An attorney for one of three people who allegedly supplied ammunition to the shooter who murdered 22 people in Nova Scotia today criticized a lack of disclosure of the crown.

HALIFAX – An attorney for one of three people who allegedly supplied ammunition to the shooter who murdered 22 people in Nova Scotia today criticized a lack of disclosure of the crown.

RCMP has accused Lisa Banfield, the killer’s 52-year-old wife, of illegally transferring ammunition, specifically .223-caliber Remington cartridges and .40-caliber Smith and Wesson cartridges.

Police have brought the same charges against 52-year-old James Blair Banfield and 60-year-old Brian Brewster over crimes allegedly committed in the month before the murders, April 18-19.

During a brief appearance today in Dartmouth Provincial Court, Brewster’s attorney Tom Singleton told the judge he was unhappy with the lack of evidence.

He said 13 of the 14 court documents used to obtain search warrants were edited so badly that he could not understand them, and he also wanted a copy of the search warrant the RCMP used to obtain his client’s cell phone.

Crown attorney Shauna MacDonald told the judge that she intended to go into a summary, which means the case would go to a provincial court and the length of the sentence would be limited.

When the charges were announced on December 4, police said the three had “no prior knowledge” of the actions of the gunman, who was killed on April 19 by an RCMP officer.

The indictment was brought up via conference call and the next trial in the three separate trials was set for March 9th.

All three attorneys waived reading the indictment, saying they would delay filing a plea on behalf of their clients pending further evidence disclosure.

The RCMP has said that Banfield was handcuffed by rifleman Gabriel Wortman on the night of April 18, but managed to escape to the nearby woods in Portapique, NS

She showed up the next morning and told the police at 6:30 am that Wortman was driving a police replica vehicle.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published on January 27, 2021.

Michael Tutton, the Canadian press

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