A bomb threat was called into the Vancouver law courts Wednesday, giving lawyers and judges an impromptu hour-long, mid-morning break.

The appeal of serial killer Robert Pickton’s second-degree murder conviction was also interrupted.

Police evacuated and secured the building, sending in trained dogs to sniff out possible explosives, which were not found.


People who were inside the courts said they were told to get out of the building and go across the street immediately without being given a reason for it.

Family members of Georgina Papin, a woman murdered by Pickton, were attending his appeal when the announcement came on.

“I don’t know what’s happening, somebody did something, we have to stay on this side (of the street),” Cynthia Cardinal said.

After about an hour, sheriffs cleared the area, finding no traces of explosives and re-opened the courts at noon.

Vancouver police spokesperson Jana McGuinness said every bomb threat is treated seriously.

“It’s a bomb call,” McGuinness said. “They cleared the building and did what they do.”

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