February 29th, 2024

Man accused of sex assaults on seven Calgary women fires lawyers in mid-trial

By The Canadian Press on January 30, 2024.

The sign at the Calgary Courts Centre in Calgary is shown on Jan. 5, 2018. A trial for a man accused of sexually assaulting seven women in Calgary was abruptly put on hold after he fired his lawyers. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Bill Graveland

CALGARY – A trial for a man accused of sexually assaulting seven women in Calgary has been put on hold after the accused fired his lawyers.

Defence lawyers Kim Arial and Andre Ouellette have been released from the case.

The accused, Richard Robert Mantha, is set to return to court March 1 to determine next steps in the trial.

Mantha faces 20 charges that include kidnapping, threats causing bodily harm, sexual assault with a weapon and administering a noxious substance.

The 59-year-old has pleaded not guilty.

His French-language trial began Jan. 19 and had already heard testimony from several of the women.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 30, 2024.

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