Defence in Calgary manslaughter case says recorded prayer not a confession

CALGARY — A defence lawyer has argued his client was not admitting he killed his young grandson when police recorded him praying for forgiveness.

Allan Perdomo Lopez is on trial for manslaughter in the death of five-year-old Emilio Perdomo.

The trial has heard the boy died of a blunt-force brain injury five months after he came to Canada from Mexico.

The Crown played police recordings of the accused, speaking in Spanish, praying for forgiveness and saying he did not want to kill the child.

Defence lawyer Darren Mahoney suggests the Crown cherry-picked passages and urged Justice Richard Neufeld to evaluate all 11 police intercepts in their entirety.

Mahoney told court in his closing arguments that Perdomo Lopez is a superstitious man who speaks frequently of demons and witchcraft.

Mahoney said his client was praying for forgiveness for going to Mexico and bringing a curse into his house — not killing the boy.

The lawyer also said the grandfather did not mean the word “kill” literally, as he uses that word in another intercept to describe being punished by his own father in the past.

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