Convict wins stay on 20 other killings

Aug. 6, 2010 at 12:50 AM
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VANCOUVER, British Columbia, Aug. 6 (UPI) -- A Canadian judge ruled a man already serving a life sentence for six murders will not stand trial for 20 additional slayings, court records showed.

Convicted serial killer Robert Pickton is serving a life sentence for killing six alleged prostitutes at his pig farm in the Vancouver suburbs, the Vancouver Globe and Mail, and the Vancouver Sun reported Wednesday.

"The public interest and, in particular, the safety of the public (does not require) a second trial … when no more penalty at law could be imposed," said crown prosecutor Melissa Gillespie of the maximum life sentence Pickton is serving.

The end of the proceedings against Pickton caused the judge to release a great deal of material related to the case that had been under a judicial embargo, the newspapers said.

"I can't imagine that's ever happened in the history of Canada, where 20 first-degree murder charges were stayed on one day," said Rob Anderson, a media lawyer who was present to argue for ending the publication ban on the materials.

"I can tell you right now, I'm not happy with (the decision not to put Pickton on trial)," said Barry Bottomley, father of Heather Kathleen Bottomley, 25 at the time of her slaying in 2001, and one of the 20 women for whose killings Pickton will not stand trial.

"I would like to see justice for Angela, but to go through (another grisly trial) is a terrible step to your body and mind and well-being," said Deborah Jardine, whose sister, Angela Rebecca Jardine, vanished in 1998.

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