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Labossière appeal to be broadcast Wednesday

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The appeal of a Manitoba man convicted of murdering his parents and brother is set to become the second hearing to be broadcast by cameras from Manitoba's law courts.

Wednesday morning, the Manitoba Court of Appeal will hear Denis Labossière's appeal of his first-degree murder convictions for the 2005 slayings of his family.

The Free Press will be live-streaming the appeal at winnipegfreepress.com. It gets underway at 9:30 a.m.

A jury found Labossière guilty in February 2012 of three counts of first-degree murder in the slayings of his parents and brother in 2005.

The bodies of Fernand Labossière, 78, his wife Rita, 74, and the couple’s son Remi, 44, were found in their burned-out farmhouse in St. Leon, Man.

Denis Jérôme Labossière was convicted of hiring a man to kill his family members.

Court was told the three were shot and killed in their home before gasoline was poured in their farmhouse and lit, burning their bodies beyond recognition.

Relatives testified Labossière was angry with his brother for getting the farm instead of him and, in his mind, not managing it properly while frittering away his money on gambling. The family farm, worth $1.3 million, was $500,000 in debt at the time.

Jurors only had two options when deciding the case: Convict on first-degree murder or acquit.

While Denis Jérôme Labossière was convicted, co-accused Michel Hince walked free.

Jeremie Toupin pleaded guilty to three counts of second-degree murder prior to Labossière's trial and testified for the Crown.

Labossière launched an appeal soon after his convictions were entered, claiming the trial judge made mistakes.

Wednesday's hearing is being broadcast as part of a cameras-in-court pilot project recently announced by the three levels of court in the province.

The hope is it will bolster public confidence in the court system by providing greater access to justice.

No witness testimony will be presented at the hearing.

Earlier this month, a camera was allowed into the Court of Queen's Bench to broadcast Associate Chief Justice Shane Perlmutter's decision in a murder trial.

History

Updated on Tuesday, April 29, 2014 at 5:58 PM CDT: Changes headline, clarifies name of Denis Jerome Labossiere.

April 30, 2014 at 11:21 AM: adds photo, corrects spelling of names

12:33 PM: Chief Justice Richard Chartier is pictured speaking at the hearing.

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