The author of a book on the Dennis Oland second degree murder trial says the decision expected Thursday by the Supreme Court of Canada is of national significance.
Oland was convicted in December 2015 of the brutal slaying of his father, well-known businessman Richard Oland. The now 49-year-old was denied bail by the New Brunswick Court of Appeal while awaiting the appeal of his murder conviction.
The Supreme Court is expected to rule on that matter Thursday.
“Whatever it is, whether it’s a stricter test or a more liberal test for bail, it’ll go down as the Oland decision, so that’ll be remembered in the future,” said University of New Brunswick professor Greg Marquis.
The New Brunswick Court of Appeal quashed Oland’s guilty verdict and ordered a new trial. He was released on bail days before the Supreme Court was to hear the appeal of his original bail denial.
Airbnb plans to fix cleaning fees. A look at how that would work
What are ‘Buy Nothing’ groups? Experts say trend can help Canadians handle inflation
During the hearing on Oct. 31, 2016 Oland’s legal team argued the necessity of the appeal moving forward.
“As much as the defence would not like to contemplate it, in theory as the Crown points out in its submission, there’s a possibility Mr. Oland one day in the future might be faced with the exact same issue and his release theoretically might be controlled by the exact same precedent,” Oland defence lawyer Alan Gold told the court.
The bail pending appeal issue has been handled differently by different provinces. Oland was denied bail on the basis that it would impact public confidence in the justice system.
“The public has an interest in whether someone who is charged or convicted of murder is going to be released simply because their appeal is not frivolous, that’s problematic,” argued New Brunswick Crown prosecutor Kathryn Gregory
Whatever the outcome, Marquis said the decision will be long remembered.
“I’ve been giving talks where I say this will be the larger importance of the Oland case to Canada well after we forget the actual details of the case itself.”
The second trial for Dennis Oland is not expected to begin until at least 2018.