Hart will not face new trial in daughters’ deaths

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Nelson Hart

ST. JOHN’S — A Newfoundland man convicted of drowning his twin daughters after a so-called Mr. Big sting will not face a new trial after the Supreme Court of Canada ruled what he told police officers is inadmissible.

Donovan Molloy, director of public prosecutions, also confirmed in provincial Supreme Court today in Gander, N.L., that with the withdrawal of the two first-degree murder charges, Nelson Hart will be released from prison.

Hart’s conviction of first-degree murder in the 2002 drowning deaths of his three-year-old twin daughters was initially overturned on appeal in 2012.

The Supreme Court of Canada upheld that decision last week and ruled that a confession Hart gave to police posing as mobsters cannot be used against him.

Lawyers for Hart say there is no evidence of a crime without the confession given during an elaborate police sting.

The high court cast doubt on the reliability of Mr. Big stings and said the operation may have violated Hart’s Charter rights.

Hart, now 45, was convicted of first-degree murder in 2007 and sentenced to life in prison for the 2002 drowning deaths of his daughters at Gander Lake.

 

 

Organizations: Supreme Court of Canada

Geographic location: Newfoundland, Gander, Gander Lake

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