Spread the love

Court hears from victims of London attack | London attack: trial of the accused

Open in full screen mode

Only one close to the Afzaal family testified during the trial; 69 others now want to present statements to the court.

  • Katherine Brulotte (See the profile)Katherine Brulotte

Speech synthesis, based on artificial intelligence, makes it possible to generate spoken text from written text .

At a hearing beginning today in Ontario Superior Court in London, dozens Relatives of the four Afzaal family members killed in the June 2021 truck attack address the court.

Judge Renee Pomerance spent two days in these sentencing hearings after receiving 69 notices of testimony. Victim impact statements may be filed in writing or presented orally by those affected by a crime as part of sentencing hearings.

However, in this case, most of the victims said they would like to present their statement in person.

This number of declarations is perhaps unprecedented, declared the magistrate during a preparatory hearing last November. This likely reflects the unprecedented nature of this case, she said.

The trial was held in Windsor because the judge determined that the extent of media coverage and comments from politicians condemning the attack made it difficult to hold an impartial trial with jurors living in London. The hearings in early January took place in London to facilitate the participation of the victims' loved ones.

London attack: trial of the accused

Consult the complete file

London attack: trial of the accused

Consult the complete file


Nathaniel Veltman was found guilty by a jury of the premeditated murders of four members of the Afzaal family after he intentionally rear-ended the family in his van. He was also found guilty of attempted murder of a nine-year-old child who survived the collision.

Open in full screen mode

Yumna Afzaal, 15, Madiha Salman, 44, Talat Afzaal, 74, and Salman Afzaal, 46, died after being grabbed by the murderer.

A guilty verdict on first degree murder charges leads directly to a prison sentence life without the possibility of parole before 25 years.

Judge Renee Pomerance will also have to examine the facts in within the framework of the procedures and could determine that the actions also constituted a terrorist act within the meaning of the law.

Such a designation would be a first in the country and could set a precedent and dictate the way in which justice deals with acts of violence motivated by ideologies or political ideals.

To reach this conclusion, the magistrate will be able to rely on all of the evidence presented at trial, on arguments from the lawyers in this case and on additional evidence that could be filed during another hearing which will take place on January 23.

Open in full screen mode

Christopher Hicks and Peter Ketcheson represent Nathaniel Veltman.

One of the murderer's lawyers, Peter Ketcheson, however, said he would oppose the designation of his client as a terrorist as soon as the verdict is pronounced. Such a designation could have an impact on possible hearings of the Parole Board, he said, emphasizing at the same time that any determination made by the judge could have repercussions on the type of services he will receive during his detention.

  • Katherine Brulotte (View profile)Katherine BrulotteFollow
Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116