The preliminary inquiry Blake Leggette,26 and his girlfriend, Victoria Henneberry, 28, got underway Monday in Halifax Provincial Court.
Legette and Henneberry are both charged with the first-degree murder of Loretta Saunders.
Saunders disappeared from her Cowie Hill apartment in February 2014. Her remains were found off a New Brunswick highway nearly two weeks later.
Judge Ann Derrick issued a publication ban on evidence presented at the hearing.
Many members of Saunders’ family were in the gallery, some even donned t-shirts with her face on them.
Saunders was an Inuit woman from Labrador. She had been living in Halifax and was a student at Saint
Mary’s University. She had recently done her thesis on missing and murdered aboriginal women.
At the time of her death, Saunders was pregnant.
Four days have been set aside for the preliminary hearing.
The crown plans to call 15 witnesses. They say if the case does make it to trial, it likely wouldn’t take place until late 2015.
“We have a realistic prospect of conviction and we intend on prosecuting these individuals with the evidence that we have. If at any point defence has anything they want to bring and talk to us about then we’re always open to discussing things with them” says Christine Driscoll, senior crown attorney on the case.
“Our job is always to seek justice, and if at any point we’re able to do that in a way other then having a 4 to 6 week trial then we would do that.”
© Shaw Media, 2014