Sikh wedding shooting trial postponed for a year due to “matters that arose”

Published: July 24, 2014
Radio India MD-shooting-Surrey BC

Managing Director of Radio India Maninder Gill after recieving the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal. Handout Photo

LARISSA CAHUTE
VANCOUVER DESI

The trial over a prominent Surrey broadcaster’s connection with a shooting at a 2010 Sikh wedding came to an abrupt halt Thursday as it was adjourned until next year.

In what was supposed to be the closing day of the nearly two-week trial for Radio India’s managing director Maninder Gill, defence lawyer Richard Peck asked a B.C. Supreme Court judge to adjourn the trial until April, 2015, due to “matters that arose.”

Gill, who has pleaded not guilty to a number of gun-related offences, had been expected to testify Thursday in the packed New Westminster courtroom.

“People want to get justice,” shooting victim Harjit Atwal said after the trial was adjourned. “It’s going into the fifth year.”

According to Atwal, who was wounded in the upper leg in the Aug. 28, 2010 shooting at Surrey’s Guru Nanak Sikh gurdwara, broadcasts were aired on Radio India all day Wednesday saying “the truth is going to come out,” while encouraging listeners to attend the trial.

“What happened to [Gill] that he didn’t tell the truth?” asked Atwal.

Atwal was also the first witness to take the stand last week and during his testimony the court heard that animosity had been brewing between the two men in the months leading up to the shooting — Atwal had filed a civil suit against Gill for allegedly defaming him on Radio India.

Neither Crown nor defence gave a specific reason why the proceedings were adjourned, but cited scheduling conflicts as to why it was delayed until the spring.

Gill has pleaded not guilty to pointing a firearm, possessing a weapon for a dangerous purpose, unauthorized possession of a firearm, two counts of discharging a firearm with intent to wound or disfigure, aggravated assault, possessing a prohibited or restricted firearm and unlawfully discharging a firearm.

The trial is expected to resume April 29, 2015.

lcahute@theprovince.com
twitter.com/larissacahute

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