Jurors in a Whitehorse murder trial have been warned to be extra attentive to upcoming witnesses.
Norman Larue, 34, is charged with murder in the 2008 death of Gordon Seybold.
Police undercover officers described how they convinced the co-accused Christina Asp to confess her role in the crime.
Asp is Larue’s former girlfriend, and she is serving a life sentence for her role in the death of Seybold. She has refused to testify. Due to her refusal to take the stand, Larue’s defence lawyers won't be able to cross-examine her confession.
Instead, they must use what is called ‘hearsay evidence’, which in this case are tape recordings and transcripts of what jurors heard last year when co-accused Asp was on trial.
Despite objections from Larue's lawyer, judge Scott Brooker ruled that evidence should be allowed, with some reservations. For instance, he told jurors to be extra critical of what they hear, since they won't be able to see Asp's facial expressions or hear the tone of her voice in the recordings.
He told jurors it's up to them to decide if the evidence they hear is believable or relevant to Larue's guilt or innocence.
The confessions were elicited through an elaborate ‘Ms. Big’-style sting, in which undercover police officers posed as a crime family and tricked Asp into describing her role in Seybold’s murder.
Asp was the first woman ever targeted in that kind of a sting.
Some of those undercover officers will testify as to how it all happened.