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Toronto van attack suspect’s police interrogation to be made public Friday morning

Click to play video: 'Van attack suspect Alek Minassian to be tried by judge alone in Toronto' Van attack suspect Alek Minassian to be tried by judge alone in Toronto
WATCH ABOVE: The suspect in the deadly Toronto van attack in April of 2018 is set to be tried by a judge alone after all parties consented to proceed without a jury. He faces 10 counts of first-degree murder and 16 counts of attempted murder. (June 19) – Jun 19, 2019

The videotaped interrogation interview between Toronto police and Alek Minassian, the accused in the 2018 Toronto van attack, is set to be unsealed early Friday.

The video is being released following a court challenge brought forward by various media outlets, including Global News.

Doug Richardson, a partner with O’Donnell, Robertson and Partners, told Global News his firm argued that everything filed in court should be open to the public.

READ MORE: State of mind to be key issue in Alek Minassian trial, judge says

Richardson said the judge’s decision to release the video is consistent with decades of case law that speaks to the openness of the court system. He said the matter could have been different if there was a jury.

“That (judge-alone trial) really does change the dynamic here,” Richardson said.

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Boris Bytensky, Minassian’s lawyer, requested a publication ban of the interrogation in July on behalf of his client and his client’s family, citing concerns it might taint witness testimony and impact the Minassian family’s privacy.

READ MORE: These are the victims of the Toronto van attack

The temporary ban was put in place while the court reviewed the matter, but it was eventually removed by Justice Anne Molloy, saying it counters the open and accessible principles of the court system.

The recorded video interrogation is scheduled to be made public as of Friday at 12:01 a.m.

Minassian is charged with 10 counts of first-degree murder and 16 counts of attempted murder in connection with the April 23, 2018 attack. He is yet to enter a plea.

His trial is set to begin in February and is expected to last several weeks. The allegations against Minassian, who is still in custody, haven’t been proven in court.

— With files from the Canadian Press

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