Bottos Law Counsel Will van Engen was in Court in January opposing an extreme sentence sought by the Crown for his client. Although he was convicted of serious offences, it was important for Mr. van Engen to stress the strong family and community support behind his client. As part of preparing for defence, Mr. van Engen compiled close to 30 letters of reference from friends and family to show the judge that although his client was found to have committed serious offences, he was not defined only by those acts.
Mr. van Engen also referred to the significant collateral consequences that resulted from his charges.
Van Engen argued Viau has experienced “collateral consequences” as a result of the charges against him. After charges were laid, posters were placed along Whyte Avenue calling him an “abuser” and a “rapist.”
On Dec. 31, 2018, Viau’s vehicle was smashed by a group of men carrying baseball bats. “When someone went out to confront him, they ran away, shouting that he was a pedophile,” van Engen said.
In another case that Bottos Law Group appealed all the way to the Supreme Court, it was held that collateral consequences can play a part in mitigating sentence. The Judge will render his decision in this case on February 23rd.