File photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS Joshua Boyle and his son Jonah, play in the garden at his parents house in Smiths Falls, Ontario.

Former Afghanistan hostage Joshua Boyle granted bail with conditions

OTTAWA — Former Afghanistan hostage Joshua Boyle, who faces several assault charges, will be released from jail with strict bail conditions that include an electronic tracking bracelet.

Ontario Court Justice Robert Wadden handed down the decision Friday in Ottawa after three days of proceedings.

Under the release conditions, Boyle will live with his parents, Patrick and Linda, in Smiths Falls, Ont. — effectively under house arrest — and wear a GPS ankle bracelet that can track his movements.

Boyle and each of his parents must post a $10,000 bond. Patrick and Linda will serve as sureties and one of them must accompany their son if he leaves the property.

“They’re all pleased that Joshua’s going to be coming home,” said Lawrence Greenspon, a lawyer for Boyle.

“Hopefully the release will happen this weekend. More than likely I think it’d be Monday.”

Boyle will be allowed to visit Ottawa with one of his parents only to see a doctor, consult his lawyers or to attend court. He must continue receiving psychiatric treatment and cannot possess a weapon or use the internet.

Boyle and his American wife, Caitlan Coleman, were taken hostage in 2012 by a Taliban-linked group while on a backpacking trip in Afghanistan.

The couple — along with the three children they had during five years in captivity — were freed by Pakistani forces last October.

Boyle was arrested by Ottawa police in December and charged with offences including assault, sexual assault, unlawful confinement and causing someone to take a noxious substance.

The charges against Boyle relate to two alleged victims, but a court order prohibits the publication of any details that might identify them or any witnesses.

None of the charges, which relate to incidents that allegedly occurred after Boyle returned to Canada, has been tested in court. A trial date is slated to be set on June 15, when Boyle is due back in court.

Evidence from the bail proceeding and Wadden’s reasons, delivered from the bench on Friday, are also covered by a publication ban.

Boyle, his wife and children had been living in an Ottawa apartment when he was arrested.

An initial evaluation found him fit to stand trial, but he underwent a fuller assessment at a mental health centre in Brockville, Ont. The confidential psychiatric assessment was completed this spring.

Boyle attended high school in Kitchener, Ont., and earned a degree from the University of Waterloo in 2005.

He was briefly married to Zaynab Khadr, sister of Toronto-born Omar Khadr, who spent years in a U.S. prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, after being captured in Afghanistan.

In 2011 Boyle married Coleman, who was raised in Pennsylvania, during a lengthy trip the pair took to South America.

The following year, they set off for Russia and travelled through Central Asia for several months, winding up in Afghanistan.

The family’s dramatic rescue last October made global headlines, and even led to a meeting on Parliament Hill with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

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