Fuel Spill Trial Might Still Be Held In Wollaston

Tuesday, December 16, 2008 at 12:53



A government official says there is still a chance a trial for a First Nation accused of causing a fuel spill two years ago could take place in the far north.


Roughly 6,000 litres of diesel spilled into Welcome Bay at Wollaston Lake in 2006.


Earlier this year, the the band was charged with six environmental violations.


A preliminary ruling was handed down on Friday, saying the court proceedings should take place in La Ronge.


However, Minister of Justice spokesperson Laur’Lei Silzer says the presiding judge could also decide to move the entire trial to Wollaston, although some questions would need to be answered first.


Silzer says the judge has to be perceived to be independent from any outside influences — so there could be some problems associated with that person staying in the community and being reliant on community members for food and lodging.


She says it’s unclear when that decision will be made.


Silzer notes efforts are being made to set up a video conference link between Wollaston and the La Ronge courthouse.


That means regardless of where the trial actually takes place, local residents should be able to watch it.