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covid19 stories

Offenders charged with violent crimes to be released from prison over COVID-19 risk

Several criminals who were in custody for violent offences were recently released.

Judges have been freeing dangerous offenders into the public due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

As reported on by Global News, several criminals who were in custody for violent offences were recently released. 

One man, identified only as T.K. in court records, was freed with conditions despite having a long criminal history with 23 convictions to his name. T.K. was being held at the time on drug trafficking charges. 

In the decision, the judge cited a report that revealed the inmates were susceptible to the coronavirus due to the cramped and confined prison environment.

19-year-old Kaynadid Abshir, who allegedly participated in a Toronto driveby shooting as a getaway driver, was also released from custody. 

Abshir was set to face several charges including attempted murder, aggravated assault, and numerous firearms offences. The judge cited Abshir’s “circumstantial” case, mental health issues, and clean record as the reasons behind his release.  

In another decision, alleged “drug supplier” Brandon Cain was released from the Ottawa Carleton Detention Centre despite facing “serious charges from a violent attack.” 

Cain and others were alleged to have assaulted victims with a pistol and taser, and also “forcing the complainants to shoplift in order to pay off the drug debt for the stolen drugs,” according to a ruling by the Superior Court. 

Cain was released on $11,000 in bonds and house arrest, even though he violated the conditions of his prior bail release which forced police to take him back into custody. 

Another man identified as T.L. in court documents was released after requesting to live with his grandparents. 

T.L. was alleged to have been involved in a Sept. 30, 2019 shooting that resulted in injuries. According to the court records, T.L. provided the weapon in the shooting and used his own vehicle to help the shooter flee the scene. 

“The offence is a very serious one,” wrote the judge. 

“The shooter is charged with attempted murder. Mr. L. is charged with having aided that. He is also charged with having provided the weapon.” 

In the decision to order T.L’s release the judge referred to the “unique circumstances” regarding the COVID-19 pandemic and that it was difficult to determine when the accused’s trial would begin. 

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