Tim Bosma case: Dellen Millard's roommate says he visited hangar on day Bosma disappeared
Robert Bochenek lived at Millard's Etobicoke house for 1 month in 2013
On the same day the Crown alleges Hamilton man Tim Bosma was shot and then his body burned in a livestock incinerator at the MillardAir hangar at the airport in Waterloo, Ont., Dellen Millard's roommates visited the hangar where they ogled expensive vehicles.
In the witness box on Wednesday, Robert Bochenek testified about his short stint as one of the accused killer's roommates. He lived with Millard at his Etobicoke home for one month starting in April of 2013.
Bochenek told jurors about visiting the MillardAir hangar on May 6, 2013, the same day Bosma left his home around 9 p.m. with two men who wanted to test drive a Dodge Ram pickup truck he was trying to sell, and was never seen again.
- Woman who had 'intimate relationship' with Dellen Millard testifies
- Dellen Millard's texts about Tim Bosma revealed
- Flames seen at MillardAir hangar hours after Tim Bosma disappeared
Millard, 30, of Toronto, and Mark Smich, 28, of Oakville, Ont., are on trial in Ontario Superior Court accused of killing Bosma, 32, who lived in the suburban Ancaster area of Hamilton. Both have pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder.
Bochenek told the jury that on May 6, he was driving his friend and fellow roommate Andrew Michalski to pick up his car at the hangar, where MillardAir employee Shane Schlatman had been working on it.
The court saw videos of a souped-up Chevrolet Camaro that Schlatman was tinkering with in the hangar on that date.
'I thought maybe they were making out'
The jury also heard about the last time Bochenek saw Millard. It was in the days before Millard's arrest on May 10. The witness said he saw Millard outside the house one evening with his girlfriend, Christina Noudga.
"He was on the driveway, I believe he was with Christina, his girlfriend at the time," he said. "I don't know what they were doing, I didn't think much of it.
"I thought maybe they were making out or something like that."
During cross-examination, Millard's lawyer, Nadir Sachak, pointed out all of the expensive items in the hangar, including the Camaro, some Jeeps, a Chevy Nova, and two planes. Millard's defence team has repeatedly attempted to portray their client' as wealthy, while the Crown has gone to great lengths to try to prove he was property rich yet cash poor.
"You considered him to be a rich acquaintance or rich friend, fair?" Sahack asked. Bochenek said he did.
In re-examination, assistant Crown attorney Brett Moodie countered by asking Bochenek if he knew about any of the high-interest loans Millard had taken out. He said he didn't.
Another one of Millard's employees was also in the witness box on Wednesday. Javier Villada, who testified with the help of a Spanish interpreter, talked about the various construction jobs he had worked on at Millard's homes and at the MillardAir hangar.
Villada said he and Millard had started a company called Villada Homes. Millard was the owner and he was the foreman. Much of his testimony centred around the finances of that company.
Their plan, he said, was to buy homes and renovate them. But instead, Villada, his brothers and in-laws only worked on Millard's properties.
Financial problems started popping up, Villada testified. He said he was supposed to be paid every two weeks but that didn't always happen.
"In the beginning, [Millard] was very punctual," he said. "Later on, [it was] every three weeks — maybe even every month."
Assistant Crown attorney Tony Leitch asked Villada who paid the taxes for the business. "Supposedly Dellen," Villata responded.
"Why do you say supposedly?" Leitch asked.
"Because I received a statement from the government telling me I owed them money," Villada replied.
In the end, Villada said he ended up paying about $9,000 in taxes for the business.
In a lengthy cross-examination, Sachak pointed out the $9,500 that Millard had loaned Villada for a trip to Colombia. The deal was, court heard, that Millard would take payments out of Villada's pay. The two weren't in agreement about how much was owed, Villada said, but he also added he didn't know much of the debt remained — something Sachak took issue with.
"Are you saying you just didn't bother determining how much you had paid him back because it was irrelevant?" Sachak said.
The Crown also asked about vehicles that Villada said he was "leasing from Millard." One of them was a red Dodge Ram pickup truck that the court has heard was registered to MillardAir.
That truck, the Crown alleges, was used to tow the large trailer that was used to shuttle around Bosma's truck after he was killed.
Two days before Bosma vanished, Millard contacted Villada and said he wanted to switch vehicles with him so he could use the truck, court heard.
Villada said Millard told him he needed it for at least a week.
The trial continues Thursday in absence of the jury so legal arguments can be conducted. Court will not sit on Friday or Monday, because of the Easter weekend, and resumes Tuesday for more legal arguments.
The jury will next sit on Wednesday.
CBC reporter Adam Carter is in the courtroom each day reporting live on the trial. You can view a recap of his live blog here: