Ryan's defence lawyer was shot down yesterday in a bid to
quiz an elite Canadian soldier about his role in the death
of a Somali civilian seven years ago.
Peter Martin ruled the line of questioning by Balfour Der
had no relevance to Ryan's guilt or innocence.
to ask Sgt. Brent Countway about a March 4, 1993 shooting
in a bid to show the witness was "bold" enough to take part
in a daring Brink's heist in Calgary.
Countway - a close friend of admitted robber Darnell Bass
- may be the gunman who emptied an AK-47 rifle above the head
of guard Paul Bisson.
defence theory is that if Mr. Ryan was not the second person
that was in the bank - this person seems to fit the description,"
Der said of Countway.
was one of two members of the now disbanded Canadian airborne
regiment who fatally wounded a fleeing and unarmed Ahmed Aruush
five charges in connection with the March 19, 1998 commando-style
heist of two Brink's guards and an ATM theft two months earlier.
evidence of Countway's conduct in Somalia "would establish
that he is the type of person who would pick up a gun and
start shooting at people.
just shoot at people, but someone ... who in a very bold way
would do something which seems to fit in with what happened
in this bank," he said.
particular man shot a Somali civilian, apparently in the back,
or the back of the head as (he) ran away."
said short of conducting a separate trial into Countway's
conduct, there would be no way of knowing the circumstances
of the shooting.
who unknowingly stored weapons used in the Brink's heist at
his Ottawa-area home, said he was with his wife and parents
in Halifax when the crime occurred. The trial continues today.