Vancouver Police say a man was arrested after lawyers for Ibrahim Ali said someone brought a loaded gun to the final day of their client’s trial last week, where he was convicted of murdering a 13-year-old girl.
Vancouver Police spokesman Sgt. Steve Addison says in a statement the man was released pending further investigations.
Lawyer Kevin McCullough said in an interview Monday that Victoria Police told him someone close to the proceedings brought a loaded Glock handgun to court with an intention “to kill” on Friday.
McCullough has filed notice of appeal against his client’s conviction for first-degree murder in the killing of the girl in Burnaby’s Central Park in 2017.
The notice of appeal filed Monday lists 25 grounds, including that the court didn’t properly address safety concerns about death threats against Ali’s lawyers, and that there were “third party suspects” in the girl’s death.
McCullough says two other men were arrested for the killing, but the B.C. Supreme Court erred by refusing to allow evidence about them to be brought up at the trial.
The notice also describes “two Asian men” who McCullough says were seen carrying a heavy bag near where the girl’s body was found.
Other grounds for appeal include alleged bias against the defence, and a dispute over the Crown’s suggestion the girl did not have a boyfriend.
The trial concluded Friday with the jury convicting Ali of killing the girl who can’t be named because of a publication ban, although hearings on matters arising from the case continue.
Another affidavit filed Dec. 5 describes more than a dozen messages received by McCullough and his firm that includes threats to kill the lawyer and his family.
A hearing on Tuesday was moved to courtroom 67, which is fitted with a metal detector, and everyone who entered was screened and their bags were checked by sheriffs.
The main Crown evidence against Ali was semen found inside the girl’s body that was a DNA match for Ali.
McCullough had told the jury that the girl was not an “innocent” child as the Crown had portrayed during trial, that she was a teenager and that it wasn’t “outlandish” to suggest she may have found Ali attractive.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Dec. 12, 2023.