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Crown appealing judge's ruling to acquit former Anglican priest Robin Barrett on child porn charges

Former Anglican priest and convicted child sex offender Robin Barrett in Newfoundland and Labrador Supreme Court in St. John’s Tuesday morning, where he was acquitted of child pornography charges.
Former Anglican priest Robin Barrett. - Tara Bradbury file photo/The Telegram

Prosecution is objecting to Justice Vikas Khaladkar ruling to exclude the evidence

ST. JOHN'S, N.L. —

The Crown is appealing a decision by a Newfoundland Supreme Court judge to acquit former Anglican priest and convicted child sex offender Robin Barrett on child pornography charges.

When the case was called at the Court of Appeal of Newfoundland and Labrador in St. John’s Tuesday, the prosecution was represented by Dana Sullivan, while Barrett was represented by defence lawyer Mark Gruchy.

They agreed to have the appeal heard on March 17, 2020.

The prosecution says Newfoundland and Labrador Supreme Court Justice Vikas Khaladkar erred in June 2018 when he found Barrett not guilty of charges of distributing, accessing and possessing child pornography.

Khaladkar ruled that the majority of evidence against Barrett was inadmissible after police breached his rights.

Investigators had executed a search warrant on Barrett’s Anchorage Road, Conception Bay South, home in July 2015. Before the search began, and after Barrett had indicated he wanted to speak to a lawyer, one of the officers asked Barrett a question about the alleged offence, thereby breaching his rights, the judge concluded.

As a result, none of the evidence seized after that point was admissible, and Barrett was acquitted of all charges.

The prosecution is objecting to the judge’s ruling to exclude the evidence. As well, it noted lawyers were supposed to hear arguments about the issue of exclusion, but didn't get the opportunity to do so.

It wasn’t Barrett's first time charged with child pornography offences. In 2010, he pleaded guilty to possessing and distributing child pornography after police found 31,460 images and 3,451 videos of the material on his computer data, some depicting children as young as six months old. He was sentenced to 2 1/2 years in jail and named to the national sex offender registry for 20 years.

— With files from Tara Bradbury

Twitter: @TelyRosie


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