Wire tap evidence is expected to play a role in the Crown’s case against three men charged with murder, Red Deer court heard on Wednesday.
Crown prosecutor Tony Bell said wire tap evidence collected in the case will have to be unsealed in order to give copies to defence lawyers as required through disclosure of all the Crown’s evidence gathered against the three accused who appeared on Wednesday and a fourth man who appears on Friday.
Christopher Ryan McIvor, 20, of Red Deer, Pedro Julio Saenz, 21, of Calgary, and Brandon Cody Smith, 22, of Calgary, all face murder charges in the April 2009 murder.
The case took another twist when Smith’s lawyer Lorne Goddard said he was getting off the case at Smith’s request.
Bell told court he was reluctant to set a preliminary hearing date without knowing the availability of Smith’s new lawyer, who hasn’t been retained yet.
McIvor and Saenz are both charged with first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder while Smith is charged with conspiracy to commit murder.
Brandon Neil Prevey, 29, of Edmonton was shot to death in a vehicle after attending a house party on Ibbotson Close in southeast Red Deer on April 5, 2009.
Prevey, was sitting in the driver’s seat of a Jeep with a woman next to him when a black Pontiac Pursuit with two men in it pulled up sometime around 3 a.m. Someone inside the car began firing shots, striking Prevey several times. The woman wasn’t hit.
The accused were remanded in custody and will appear again on Aug. 10 to hopefully set a date for the preliminary hearing, which will determine if there’s enough evidence to warrant the accused stand trial in Red Deer Court of Queen’s Bench.
Christopher Martin Fleig, 25, of Red Deer is undergoing psychiatric examinations at the Southern Alberta Forensic Centre. He also faces first-degree murder and conspiracy charges and appears on Friday.
Police said earlier they believed the murder was gang-related.