Case in opposition to hit man Silva delayed as a result of Montreal cop could also be below investigation

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The prosecution also asked for a delay because of an issue involving the Supreme Court of Canada’s ruling next week in the case of Quebec City mosque shooter Alexandre Bissonnette.

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Paul Cherry  •  Montreal Gazette Frédérick Silva, left, pleaded no contest to the 2017 murder of Concordia University student Daniel Armando Somoza-Gildea. Frédérick Silva, left, pleaded no contest to the 2017 murder of Concordia University student Daniel Armando Somoza-Gildea. Montreal Gazette files

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Sentencing arguments in the case in which hit man Frédérick Silva recently pleaded no contest to murdering a Concordia University student in Notre-Dame-de-Grâce were delayed Friday, in part because a Montreal police investigator is apparently under investigation for forging a warrant.

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On May 6, Silva conceded the prosecution had enough evidence to convict him of the May 24, 2017 murder of Daniel Armando Somoza-Gildea, an undergraduate student in geography at the university when he was fatally shot outside a strip club.

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Silva’s no-contest plea is part of a strategy that allows him to appeal the second-degree murder charge as well as three counts of first-degree murder involving three men he killed in cold blood while he hid from police after they obtained an arrest warrant in the Somoza-Gildea case.

Between Oct. 18 and Dec. 20, 2018, Silva killed Alessandro Vinci, who was working at his family’s car dealership in Laval; Yvon Marchand, a convicted drug dealer; and Sébastien Beauchamp, who had close ties to the Hells Angels. While it appears Marchand and Beauchamp were killed as part of an underworld settling of accounts, the prosecution believes Vinci was killed because he helped police while they investigated Silva and his girlfriend for fraud involving vehicles.

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Silva also pleaded no contest to the attempted murder of Montreal Mafia leader Salvatore Scoppa. Silva shot Scoppa outside a restaurant in Terrebonne on Feb. 21, 2017.

Silva’s appeal is based on how Montreal police Const. Guillaume Joly-Tessier used a justice of the peace’s stamp and forged her signature on a warrant used during the investigation.

On Friday, Superior Court Justice Marc David was scheduled to declare Silva guilty of Somoza-Gildea’s murder and to hear sentencing arguments. Instead, defence lawyer Danièle Roy asked for a delay because it appears that Joly-Tessier is under investigation.

Last year, Silva requested that a stay of proceedings be placed on all the charges he faced because of the forged warrant. David rejected the request and lifted a publication ban on the decision on May 6, when Silva pleaded no contest to murdering Somoza-Gildea.

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Roy said she was informed that Joly-Tessier “is no longer authorized to come to the courthouse to request authorizations” for warrants.

“To me, that appears to be very serious. It also seems that an investigation has begun in the Sûreté du Québec.”

Roy said she preferred the delay because she has been unable so far to get answers concerning Joly-Tessier’s status.

“There is an enormous amount of questions that are being raised,” Roy told the judge. “The publication of your decision (on May 6) has stirred things in the legal community concerning the actions taken by Joly-Tessier.”

Prosecutor Antoine Piché said he also preferred a delay, but for other reasons. He noted that the Supreme Court of Canada is scheduled to deliver its decision next week in the case of Alexandre Bissonnette, the man who killed six people in 2017 while they were worshipping at a mosque in Quebec City. The court will rule on whether a person convicted of multiple murders in Canada can serve life sentences consecutively and therefore see their period of parole ineligibility increased significantly beyond the standard 25 years.

David agreed that the decision scheduled for May 27 in the Bissonnette case could have an impact on Silva’s sentence.

The judge also asked Piché to take the time necessary to explain the reasons for the delay to the members of Somoza-Gildea’s family who attended Friday’s hearing.

Somoza-Gildea’s godfather was prepared to make a victim impact statement on Friday.

The case returns to court on Aug. 1.

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  1. Montreal police investigators look for clues, at the scene of murder investigation at the corner of Hochelaga and Pierre-Tetreault on Tuesday Oct. 30, 2018. Yvon Marchand, a convicted drug dealer, was killed. Frédérick Silva was later charged with his murder.

    Hit man Frédérick Silva gets fourth life sentence for attempted murder

  2. Alexandre Bissonnette is seen arriving at the courthouse in Quebec City in February 2017.

    Supreme Court hears arguments on Quebec mosque shooter’s parole term

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