Opening statements begin in Nadia Gehl murder trial
The trial for three men accused in the Kitchener shooting death of 28-year-old Nadia Gehl got underway in Hamilton this week.
On Wednesday, jury selection was completed, with five women and seven men chosen to decide the case. Testimony also began.
Crown prosecutor Fraser Kelly gave his an opening statement to outline what he anticipates the Crown's evidence will show.
Nadia Gehl was shot and killed on February 2, 2009 while on her way to catch a bus to her job at a Kitchener toy store.
Her body was discovered on a snowy pathway near a bus stop not far from her Ktichener home.
After a six month investigation, three men were charged with murder in connection with her death.
Ronald Cyr, Gehl's husband, along with Zdenek Zvolensky and Nashat Qahwash are charged with first degree murder.
In his opening statement Kelly told jurors Gehl was shot once in the head at close range and once in the chest.
He also alleges it was Cyr who planned the killing and enlisted the help of the other two accused. Cyr had gone to work the morning of the killing.
The Crown told the court Cyr was tired of his marriage, had a mistress and wanted out, and that Cyr and Gehl were in debt and had serious financial pressures.
The Crown says Cyr told one of the accused he would pay him once he collected on a half-a-million dollar insurance policy on his wife.
Police found an older model semi-auto handgun in the home where Qahwash was living. It was hidden in a ceiling area of the home and was wrapped in paper and cloth.
The Crown says Qahwash's fingerprint was found on the packaging and Zvolensky's DNA was found on the butt of the gun, which was determined to be the murder weapon.
The Crown says he will call an undercover officer who befriended Cyr and the other two to testify and will play incriminating recordings.
Zvolensky's defence lawyer Delmar Doucette says "Well today what happened was standard…The actual trial process now starts and the real evidence, not what the Crown hopes is the evidence, will be heard over the next four, six, seven weeks."
The trial is expected to last up to eight weeks.