NEWS

Dennis Oland Granted Bail On Father's Murder Charge

11/18/2013 01:03 EST | Updated 01/23/2014 06:58 EST
SAINT JOHN, N.B. - The son of slain New Brunswick businessman Richard Oland was granted bail Monday, days after he was charged with second-degree murder in his father's death.

Dennis Oland was released from custody on a $50,000 surety, ordered to surrender his passport and inform Saint John police of any travels outside the province, an administrator with the Court of Queen's Bench said.

Richard Oland was found dead in his Saint John office on July 7, 2011. The 69-year-old was a well-known businessman and member of the Order of Canada.

He was also a member of the family that owns Moosehead Breweries, but left the company in the 1980s and went on to work in the trucking business and at the Saint John Shipbuilding and Drydock Co.

His son Dennis, who was charged last Wednesday, was first identified as a suspect in his father's death in court documents released in May. Since then, pieces of the police investigation have been released by a provincial court judge after two media organizations argued that search warrants and affidavits to support them should be made public.

Among the assertions that have been released in those documents was a sworn police affidavit that says blood on a sports jacket found in Dennis Oland's home in Rothesay matched the DNA profile of his father. Search warrants also say that Dennis Oland was "experiencing financial hardships" and owed his father more than $500,000.

The documents contain claims not proven in court.

Saint John police Chief Bill Reid said last week that Richard Oland died after repeated blows, but he wouldn't elaborate or say whether police found a murder weapon.

Members of Dennis Oland's family have said they believe he is innocent. He is due in provincial court Tuesday in Saint John to set dates for a preliminary hearing.

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