An Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench Justice has nixed a defence lawyer’s application to have a stay in proceedings on sexual interference and sexual assault charges laid against Thomas Svekla.
Svekla, who was convicted last year of killing a sex trade worker, is charged in relation to an incident involving a five-year-old girl back in 1995. The trial began last week.
Justice Mel Binder was asked by Svekla’s defence lawyer, Robert Shaigec, to have a stay in proceedings Tuesday when evidence disappeared — a taped police interview with the victim in the mid-1990s.
The tape would have been valuable to view as evidence and does pose a challenge to Svekla’s defence, admitted Binder.
“It is so prejudicial to the accused,” said Binder, who noted there is other evidence to consider.
Shaigec said the now 18-year-old victim has been “unreliable” because she can’t recall key details.
Binder is expected to make his verdict on Monday.