Sentencing hearing delayed after taxi driver Lulzim Jakupaj fires lawyer

In a surprise twist of events, Lulzim Jakupaj fired his lawyer on Thursday morning, ahead of what was supposed to be his sentencing hearing for committing an on-the-job break and enter.

33-year-old was found guilty in March of on-the-job break and enter

Lulzim "Leon" Jakupaj appeared in Supreme Court in St. John's on Thursday. (Gary Locke/CBC)

In a surprise twist of events, Lulzim Jakupaj fired his lawyer on Thursday morning, ahead of what was supposed to be his sentencing hearing for committing an on-the-job break and enter.

Defence lawyer Jason Edwards told Chief Justice Raymond Whalen at Supreme Court in St. John's that he had been discharged, and there would have to be a postponement in the matter for Jakupaj to find new counsel. 

Lulzim Jakupaj fired his lawyer Jason Edwards on Thursday morning, before what was supposed to be his sentencing hearing. (Gary Locke/CBC)

The 33-year-old taxi driver, who's also known as Leon, was found guilty in March of break and enter with intent to commit an indictable offence, in relation to an early morning incident at a home in Kilbride almost a year ago.

Jakupaj will now apply for a new lawyer through Legal Aid. Edwards said he would immediately start the paperwork for that process.

Jakupaj, who's been in custody since his conviction, will return to court on June 9 to set a new date for his sentencing hearing.

Trial on other charges set for fall

Meanwhile, Jakupaj is also facing separate charges of sexual assault related to other complaints.

That trial is slated to begin on Oct. 23.

With files from Rob Antle and Ariana Kelland