Jurors at Robert Pickton’s trial were misinformed and confused about whether the serial killer acted on his own, reasons enough to justify a retrial, defence lawyers told the B.C. Court of Appeal yesterday.

New defence lawyer Gil McKinnon said the judge in charge of Pickton’s trial made five mistakes that took away the pig farmer’s right to a fair trial.

“These five errors strike at the core value of our criminal justice system,” McKinnon said. “It is the constitutional right of every accused, regardless of how heinous the allegations, to have a fair trial.”

Family and friends of the victims gathered outside of the law courts to comment on the trial process.

Lauren Gill, an outreach worker in the Downtown Eastside and friend of Jason Fleury, whose sister Mona Wilson was among the six women Pickton was convicted of killing, said the court process has been disrespectful to the families.

The courtroom was full yesterday and some family members had to wait outside while media were accommodated inside.

“The families are here for closure, and to be denied that is a slap in the face, a total insult,” Gill said.

Nine days have been set aside for the appeal, with the Crown expected to present its case by the end of the week.


If Pickton is awarded a new trial, the Crown is counter-appealing to have him tried on the 26 counts of first-degree murder he was originally charged with, instead of splitting them.