Castor murder trial to go ahead

Two men charged with arson and three counts of first-degree murder after Castor-area family killed

The trial for two men accused of murdering a Castor-area family will go ahead.

Lawyers for Jason Gordon Klaus and Joshua Gregory Frank sought last month to have the charges stayed, citing an unreasonable delay in bringing the case to trial.

That application was denied by a judge earlier this week.

The bodies of Gordon Klaus, 61 and his daughter, Monica, 40 were found in the remains of their farmhouse, which burned down on Dec. 8, 2013. Gordon’s wife, Sandra, 62, was never found.

RCMP investigators allege that she also perished in the fire.

RCMP arrested and charged two suspects on Aug. 15, 2014 — Monica’s brother, Klaus, and an acquaintance of his, Joshua Gregory Frank.

Both men were charged with three counts of first-degree murder and one of arson.

Their lawyers argued that an unreasonable delay took place in Red Deer Court of Queen’s Bench on Aug. 24.

In July 2016, the Supreme Court of Canada set a benchmark of what is considered an unreasonable delay in court and that an accused’s rights to a timely trial were infringed.

If a judge agrees the delay was unreasonable, charges would be stayed.

A six-week trial for Klaus and Frank is set to begin on Oct. 10.

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