Lawyers scream at each other in Pontbriand case
Published Wednesday, May 7, 2014 2:00PM EDT
Last Updated Wednesday, May 7, 2014 10:48PM EDT
Instead of making calm arguments for a tougher or lighter sentence for a sexual offender, lawyers had a screaming match Wednesday in a St. Jerome courthouse
Lawyers for the crown and convicted sexual exploiter Tania Pontbriand had been speaking over the phone during the week, but it was only when they were in court that defence lawyer Hnan Mrani said she was not ready to proceed with sentencing arguments for her client.
The crown lawyer was outraged, demanding to know why Mrani had not mentioned not being ready during their conversations.
She said that it was only when she began to look closely at a pre-sentencing report that she noticed it was incomplete.
"We were surprised when we looked at the report and noticed it was missing certain information, and we only had Monday and Wednesday to meet with another person and to present our side today," said Mrani.
Justice Valmont Beaulieu eventually decided to reschedule the sentencing argument hearing for June 18.
He also convinced both lawyers to meet him as his home courtroom in Gatineau, instead of returning to St. Jerome.
Beaulieu normally works out of the Gatineau courthouse and was commuting to St. Jerome specifically for the Pontbriand case.
Pontbriand was found guilty earlier this year of sexually assaulting a former student.
She faces a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison.
Since the conviction, many of Pontbriand's friends and former students have praised her on social media and portrayed her as a victim.
Some have attacked the victim and one even threatened to assault him. He has since moved out of the province.