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Ex-judge Delisle wants bail pending murder appeal

07/04/2012 08:45 EDT | Updated 09/03/2012 05:12 EDT
Jacques Delisle, the former Quebec Court of Appeal judge who was convicted of murdering his wife, is asking to be let out on bail while he awaits his appeal.

Delisle's lawyer made that case in front of Quebec's highest court on Wednesday, arguing that his client deserves a new trial.

Justice Richard Wagner said he will do everything he can to rule within days on whether Delisle should be released.

On June 14, a jury in Quebec City found Delisle, 77, guilty of murdering in his wife in the couple's condo in 2009. He is currently serving a mandatory sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole for 25 years.

Nicole Rainville, 71, died from a gunshot wound to the head. Her death was initially deemed a suicide, but Delisle was later charged with first-degree murder.

He pleaded not guilty and maintained that his wife took her own life.

However, the Crown's case, the one ultimately accepted by the jury, pointed to a murder motivated by the radical lifestyle change the couple experienced after Rainville suffered a stroke two years before her death.

Delisle had been out on bail for nearly two years as he waited for his trial. Once his conviction was handed down from the jury, his bail was revoked. He's been behind bars since.

Delisle's lawyer says his client is not a flight risk or a threat to public safety.

He says Delisle returned to Quebec City for his trial after taking two cruises and has no other family members other than those in Quebec City.

Delisle seeking appeal

Delisle's lawyer filed the paperwork to set his appeal in motion at the Quebec City courthouse last week.

The documents argue the jury's verdict was unreasonable and not based on evidence.

Delisle's lawyer claims his client was tried by a jury of layman who could not take into account the totality of the evidence presented by ballistic experts in the two-and-a-half days they spent deliberating.

He argues Delisle should be granted a new trial and one heard by a judge alone. The defence made that request at the start of the former judge's first trial, but the Crown opposed it.

He was appointed to the Quebec Superior Court in 1983 and sat on the Court of Appeal for 15 years. He left the bench six months before Rainville’s death.

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