The criminal trial for the sexual assault case against former Kelowna mayor Colin Basran has been stayed.
Seven months and multiple court dates after Basran was charged with one count of an indictable offence of sexual assault that allegedly occurred while he was the sitting mayor, the Special Prosecutor appointed to the case has called for a stay of proceedings.
“I am deeply relieved that this matter is over,” Basran said in a statement. “I want to thank those who stood by me during this difficult time. I will have nothing further to say on this matter and kindly ask for privacy at this time.”
This decision means that the criminal trial will be stopped, but it is not the same as an acquittal or a finding of not guilty.
The incident allegedly occurred on May. 11, 2022, while Basran was the mayor of Kelowna.
After the incident was reported, an investigation was conducted by the Kelowna RCMP before being handed over to the Nelson RCMP for an independent review from investigators, who had no previous relationship with the former mayor.
Crown Prosecutor Brock Martland was appointed to the case in October 2022, and since then has been working to gather evidence. Basran was charged with one count of sexual assault on Dec. 7.
Martland made the decision to direct a stay of proceedings after receiving new information from Basran’s lawyers and police investigators.
Basran was represented by high-profile criminal defence lawyer Richard Peck.
A Media Statement from the B.C. Prosecution Service said that Martland “conducted a careful review of all the materials and information available and concluded that the charge assessment standard for proceeding with criminal charges could no longer be met.”
Throughout the court proceedings Basran never entered a plea of guilty of not guilty.