JP dismisses assault charge against Qikiqtani business leader
Complainant did not appear at Harry Flaherty’s assault trial last month
A Nunavut justice of the peace has dismissed an assault charge against the well-known head of a prominent Inuit birthright corporation after the complainant, a woman, did not show up for the trial.
Harry Flaherty, 59, the long-time president of Qikiqtaaluk Corp., the business arm of the Qikiqtani Inuit Association, was charged with assaulting the woman in June 2018. He pleaded not guilty last fall.
A trial was set for the Nunavut Court of Justice in Iqaluit on June 26.
But the process ended without a trial and the charges were dismissed when the complainant did not attend court that day, the Crown prosecutor’s office told Nunatsiaq News.
The Crown then asked for an adjournment, but the justice of the peace denied that application, leaving the Crown unable to prove its case.
One of the factors that the justice of the peace must consider in an adjournment application due to the non-attendance of a witness is whether there is a reasonable expectation that this person would attend a future trial date. In this case, the justice did not consider that likely.
The Crown has 30 days from June 26 to decide whether or not to appeal.