Plea bargain is too lenient: MPP

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BURLINGTON, Ont.– A Halton crown attorney is reviewing a plea bargain that would force a York Region trucking company to make a $2,000 donation to charity for running overweight.

The penalty, which takes the place of a charge of carrying an oversized load without a permit, was to be confirmed yesterday by Justice of the Peace Lina Mills at the Ontario Court of Justice provincial offences office in Burlington. However, the case was held over until May 30.

Attorney-General David Young was made aware of the situation by New Democrat MPP, Peter Kormos, after published reports indicated the charges were laid after the truck struck 17-year-old Jeffrey Fleeton, a grade 12 Brampton student. Fleeton died a month later in the hospital.

Halton Region Police and Ministry of Labour investigators searched the scene and found no evidence to file charges directly related to Fleeton’s death. However, investigators did charge vehicle owner, Argo Lumber Inc. with having an oversized load on the truck.

According to police the truck was carrying pre-made frames for houses being built in the area.

Shortly after Crown Attorney Raphael Leong agreed to the plea bargain with Neil Kozloff, the lawyer for the company, he left the case. Another Halton prosecutor, Richard Garwood-Jones, will review the case to determine if the plea bargain is appropriate or if a trial is needed.

Kormos told the Legislature it is an outrageous miscarriage of justice to allow a company to make a $2,000 donation for the death of a teenager. He urges the Attorney-General to void the deal and have the truck owners face trial.

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