Canada Final arguments begin in case of Quebec man charged in slaying of wife, stranger
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ST-JEROME, Que. — Final arguments have begun in the double murder trial of Ugo Fredette.
The Quebec man is on trial for first-degree murder in the deaths of his ex-wife Veronique Barbe and Yvon Lacasse, a man he encountered at a rest stop while on the lam.
He has admitted to causing their deaths but has denied the intent necessary for the murder charges, asking the jury to find him guilty of manslaughter.
Fredette's lawyer, Louis-Alexandre Martin, was the first to address jurors at a courthouse north of Montreal and reminded them if they had any reasonable doubt, they must find in the favour of the accused.
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MONTREAL — A Quebec man who pleaded guilty to fatally stabbing his unborn child will have a legal aid lawyer study his attempt to withdraw his plea. Sofiane Ghazi was back in court Tuesday and told the judge he'd been unable to hire a lawyer himself, so Quebec Superior Court Justice Jean-Francois Buffoni called on legal aid to act as a "friend of the court" to assist him. Ghazi, 39, suddenly pleaded guilty on Sept. 5 — the second day of his jury trial — to reduced charges of second-degree murder of the infant boy and aggravated assault against his wife in a July 24, 2017 attack. He had initially faced charges of first-degree murder and attempted murder.
The defence has argued that Fredette snapped on the day of the killings after fights and arguments with Barbe and alleges she came at him with a knife.
According to the Crown, Fredette couldn't accept the end of his relationship with Barbe, 41, so he allegedly stabbed her 17 times before fleeing with a child who was present at the scene.
The accused testified that he didn't remember repeatedly stabbing his ex-wife and was left with a singular image of her, inert on the ground, with a knife in her stomach.
While on the run, he allegedly killed Lacasse, 71, before stealing the man's car at a rest stop.
Prosecutor Steve Baribeau will lay out the Crown's case on Friday. The trial began sitting at the end of September.
This report by The Canadian Press was originally published Oct. 10, 2019.
The Canadian Press
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