Pickton hearing reset for next Tuesday

Monday, November 04, 2002

The day that families of Vancouver's missing women have been waiting for ended with another delay.

Robert Pickton's lawyer Peter Ritchie talks to reporters outside the courtroom Monday, after being granted another week to settle a funding dispute with the province over the accused serial killer's defence. (Global BC)

On Monday, the preliminary hearing for accused serial killer Robert "Willy" Pickton was set to begin.

But the hearing was delayed for at least one more week on a request from Pickton's lawyer, Peter Ritchie.

Ritchie asked Provincial Court Judge David Stone for the extra time to try to resolve a legal dispute over how much the province is willing to pay for Pickton's defence.

Robert Pickton is charged with 15 counts of first-degree murder in connection with Vancouver's missing women case. (BCTV News on Global)

The judge granted a delay, but says the preliminary hearing will go ahead starting next Tuesday, no matter what.

Pickton's hearing was scheduled to begin Monday in a Port Coquitlam courtroom, the first phase in what is expected to be a very lengthy trial.

Lawyer Peter Ritchie has been pushing for a team of six lawyers, while the province has rejected what it has called a "Cadillac defense" for Pickton.

Pickton -- described by Ritchie as "unsophisticated" and growing impatient with wallowing in jail -- still faces the prospect of representing himself if a deal isn't reached. Both Crown and defence lawyers have advised against the idea.

The Coquitlam pig farmer faces 15 first-degree murder charges in connection with the investigation of 63 missing women from the downtown east side.

 Copyright 2002 CanWest Interactive, with files from The Province, BCTV News on Global



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Updated: August 21, 2016