Oland to face retrial next October for murder of his multi-millionaire father
Kevin Bissett, THE CANADIAN PRESS
Published Thursday, November 2, 2017 7:40AM ADT
Last Updated Thursday, November 2, 2017 8:03PM ADT
SAINT JOHN, N.B. -- Dennis Oland will face a retrial for his father's murder next October.
Judge Terrence Morrison on Thursday set Oct. 10 for a trial that could last months.
Oland was found guilty in 2015 of Richard Oland's second-degree murder, but the province's appeal court overturned the conviction in October 2016 and ordered a new trial.
Unresolved issues had prevented Judge Terrence Morrison from setting a trial date, but he was able to set one, along with a March 6 date to settle pre-trial issues, after a conference in Saint John, N.B., Thursday.
The 49-year-old financial planner's first trial in Court of Queen's Bench lasted 65 days, and court documents indicate a retrial could last just as long.
Oland's 69-year-old father was found face down in a pool of blood in his Saint John office on July 7, 2011.
An autopsy showed he suffered 45 sharp and blunt force blows to his head, neck and hands. No murder weapon was ever found.
A publication ban was placed on Thursday's hearing.
Oland, who sat quietly in a grey suit in the front row Thursday, is a member of one of the Maritimes' most prominent families.
The Oland family founded Moosehead Breweries, whose executive chairman Derek Oland has been a steadfast supporter of his nephew Dennis Oland through his legal battle.
Oland was released on bail last October when the New Brunswick Court of Appeal ordered a new trial, citing an error in the judge's instructions to the jury.
During the first trial, the court heard Oland had visited his multi-millionaire father's office the night before the body was discovered and was the last known person to see him alive.
He had told police he was wearing a navy blazer when he visited his father that evening, but witnesses and video evidence showed him wearing a brown Hugo Boss jacket that was later found to have tiny traces of blood and DNA that matched his father's profile.
The Crown portrayed Oland's original statement about the jacket as an intentional lie, while the defence said it was an honest mistake. The appeal court said the trial judge did not properly instruct the jurors as to the probative value of that statement.
In July, the Supreme Court of Canada dismissed an application by the Crown to restore the conviction, and a cross-appeal seeking an acquittal.