A murder trial expected to be one of the most expensive in Yukon history has been delayed by money issues.
Norman Larue and Christina Asp are charged with murdering Gordon Seybold in his Whitehorse-area home in March 2008. The 63-year-old’s house was gutted in a fire.
The pair were arrested in Strathmore, Alberta, after a costly undercover investigation.
The massive amount of evidence and the possibility of lengthy charter arguments are expected to raise costs to record-breaking highs.
Yukon Legal Services, which is paying to retain the pair’s defence lawyers, is having trouble getting extra money from of the Justice Department’s budget.
A request for an independent budget in the neighbourhood of $200,000 hasn’t been approved, said Nils Clarke, executive director of Yukon Legal Services.
“Discussions are ongoing with Yukon government,” said Clarke.
On Tuesday, Larue’s and Asp’s defence lawyers said they couldn’t continue to trial because they hadn’t signed a contract with legal aid.
“They haven’t been retained yet,” said Bonnie Mcdonald, a Crown counsel with the federal prosecution service.
“So it’s been bumped up until December 14 to confirm a retainer.”