O’Brien trial hears final arguments - Metro US

O’Brien trial hears final arguments

Closing arguments in Ottawa Mayor Larry O’Brien’s influence peddling trial are expected to wrap up today after the defence chose not to call any witnesses in support of its case.

In his closing arguments, Crown prosecutor Scott Hutchison insisted there was a “mountain of circumstantial evidence” supporting the testimony of his primary witness Terry Kilrea.

O’Brien is facing two criminal charges stemming from allegations that he attempted to get Kilrea an appointment to the National Parole Board in exchange for Kilrea dropping out of the 2006 mayoral campaign.

Hutchison insisted that email exchanges and phone conversations between Kilrea, O’Brien and Ottawa West-Nepean MP John Baird could only make sense according to Kilrea’s version of events.

If O’Brien’s version of the narrative were true and the parole board appointment was a dead issue mere hours after their July 12 meeting, then his e-mails and conversations with Kilrea after that date make no sense, Hutchison said.

Kilrea’s story, Hutchison insists, is reinforced by testimony from Nepean Carleton MPP Lisa MacLeod and John Light, a former Kilrea supporter and executive assistant to MP Pierre Poilievre.

“He would have to be some kind of genius to sit down and make up this story and miraculously have it fit so perfectly to all these matters of objective truth,” said Hutchison. “There are adjectives that come to mind when you think about Terry Kilrea, but Machiavellian schemer isn’t one of them.”

O’Brien’s defence lawyer, Michael Edelson, is expected to complete his closing arguments today.

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