Alberta judge denies abuse of process in case of Calgary couple charged in boy’s death

An Alberta judge has rejected a bid by defence lawyers to throw out a direct indictment in the case of a Calgary couple charged in the death of a five-year-old child.

Allan and Carolina Perdomo are charged with manslaughter in the July 2015 death of Eneas Emilio Perdomo.

Eneas, who was Allan Perdomo’s biological grandson, died five days after he was taken to hospital.

Police have said Eneas had swelling and bruising all over his body.

An autopsy concluded his death was the result of multiple blunt-force trauma injuries.

Pre-trial arguments in the case are to begin Nov. 19.

The couple was committed to stand trial last year at a preliminary hearing.

But last June, Justice Richard Neufeld quashed that decision and the indictment to allow the defence to question the lead investigator and agreed to reopen the preliminary hearing for one day.

He noted the justice system was now in the post-Jordan era and ordered that November trial dates already set in the case remain in place.

In 2016, the Supreme Court’s Jordan decision imposed time limits on how long it can take for a criminal case to go to trial before it is deemed unreasonably delayed.

The ruling said people charged with an offence have the right to have their cases tried within 18 months for provincial courts and 30 months for Superior courts.

But the Crown elected to go to a direct indictment which bypasses the need for a preliminary hearing. The defence argued that amounted to an abuse of process.

Neufeld disagreed.

“The co-accused have applied to quash a direct indictment brought by the deputy minister of justice on Sept. 21, 2018, charging them with manslaughter in the death of Eneas Emilio Perdomo,” Neufeld said Wednesday.

“I’ve decided to refuse the application. I am providing that information today in order to allow matters to move on in an expeditious way in the ordinary course and which I would expect the next step to be the trial.”

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