NEWS
01/26/2018 11:02 EST | Updated 01/26/2018 12:00 EST

Joshua Boyle Fit To Stand Trial But Needs Psych Assessment: Lawyer

The charges relate to incidents that allegedly occurred after his return from Afghanistan.

Mark Blinch/Reuters
Joshua Boyle speaks to the media after arriving with his family at Toronto Pearson International Airport on Oct. 13, 2017.

OTTAWA — Former Afghanistan hostage Joshua Boyle, who faces a string of assault charges, will undergo a comprehensive psychiatric assessment.

Boyle's lawyer, Lawrence Greenspon, told an Ontario court today that an initial evaluation found his client fit to stand trial, but added he would benefit from a fuller assessment at a mental health centre in Brockville, Ont.

Boyle's next court appearance is scheduled for March 26.

He was arrested by Ottawa police late last month and charged with various offences including eight counts of assault, two of sexual assault, two of unlawful confinement and one count of causing someone to take a noxious substance.

Victims can't be identified

The charges against the 34-year-old relate to two alleged victims, but a court order prohibits the publication of any details that might identify them or witnesses.

None of the charges — related to incidents that allegedly occurred after Boyle returned to Canada in October from his Afghan captivity — have been tested in court.

Boyle and his American wife, Caitlan Coleman, were taken hostage in 2012 by a Taliban-linked group while on a backpacking trip in Afghanistan. The couple, and the three children they had during their five years in captivity, were freed by Pakistani forces last October.

The family had been living in a central Ottawa apartment for about a month when Boyle was arrested.

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