Marco Muzzo to plead guilty in fatal collision case

Marco Muzzo’s lawyer has asked for a court appearance next month, at which point his client will plead guilty to various charges in connection with a crash that killed three children and their grandfather north of Toronto.

See Full Article

Muzzo’s lawyer, Brian Greenspan, submitted the request to a Superior Court judge in Newmarket, Ont. on Wednesday, after electing earlier in the day to be tried by a judge without a jury. Greenspan requested a court date of Feb. 4 to make a statement of facts and enter the guilty pleas.

The 29-year-old Muzzo faces 12 counts of impaired driving and six counts of dangerous operation of a motor vehicle related to the incident.

Greenspan said his client will plead guilty to multiple charges, adding that some charges are “redundant.” Certain charges against Muzzo are mutually exclusive, so some of the charges will disappear when he pleads guilty to others, Greenspan said. He added that Muzzo will not be entering any pleas of not guilty.

Greenspan also stressed that there will be no plea bargain, and that the defence and the Crown will submit different arguments at the sentencing hearing.

“This is not a plea deal. This is an acceptance of responsibility by Marco Muzzo,” Greenspan told reporters outside the courthouse, after submitting the request to the judge. “He wanted this matter to be closed as quickly as possible, and to move on with the plea and the acceptance of responsibility.”

Sentencing is expected to take place Feb. 23-24.

The Sept. 27 crash fatally wounded 9-year-old Daniel, 5-year-old Harrison (Harry) and 2-year-old Milagros (Milly) Neville-Lake. The children's 65-year-old grandfather Gary Neville also died as a result of the collision, and their grandmother and great-grandmother were injured.

Family reaction

The children’s parents, Jennifer Neville-Lake and Edward Lake, were present at the courthouse on Wednesday for Muzzo’s appearance.

Neville-Lake said her family is “cautiously optimistic” about Muzzo’s intent to plead guilty, but “we’re going to remain broken,” she said. Neville-Lake said she did not expect Wednesday’s development, and she is hesitant to believe it until the plea has been formally submitted next month.

“If it’s a guilty plea… then that acknowledges he’s the reason our children are dead,” Neville-Lake told reporters outside the courthouse, after the day’s events inside. She added that there is no “magic number” of years that she is hoping for at a potential sentencing hearing. “There is no sentence that he can ever do that is going to repay what he took from us,” she said. “He has one life. I’m missing my three children and my father – that’s four.”

Edward Lake spoke only briefly. “I feel lost. I feel destroyed,” he said.

Neville-Lake said her mother and grandmother are recovering physically from the crash, but both are dealing with memory loss.

Muzzo’s family owns a vast construction empire with operations in Toronto, Ottawa, Calgary and Southwestern Ontario. Their construction company, Marel Contractors, is estimated to be worth more than $1 billion. They also own Pemberton Group, one of Toronto’s largest development companies, which has been in operation for more than 50 years.

Muzzo appeared in person at the courthouse Wednesday morning, and was there again on Wednesday afternoon.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Red Cross chief calls for fight against COVID-19 vaccine 'fake news'

    World News CBC News
    The head of the world's largest humanitarian network is urging governments and institutions to combat "fake news" about COVID-19 vaccines which has become "a second pandemic" and start building trust in communities around the world about the critical importance of vaccinating people. Source
  • As the virus resurges, mental health woes batter France

    World News CTV News
    ROUEN, FRANCE -- The panicked 22-year-old is led to Consultation Room No. 2, with its easy-mop floor and honeycombed meshing over the window. Behind her, the psychiatric emergency ward's heavy double doors -- openable only with a staff member's key -- thud shut. Source
  • Tainted rice wine kills 7 at Cambodian funeral ceremony

    World News CTV News
    PHNOM PENH, CAMBODIA -- Seven people died and more than 130 others were hospitalized in Cambodia after drinking rice wine that health authorities believe was adulterated with a toxic substance. The Health Ministry said the incident happened Saturday in a remote rural area of central Cambodia's Kampong Chhnang province, where villagers drank the wine at a funeral ceremony. Source
  • Nobel laureate says pandemic raising violence, trafficking

    World News CTV News
    TANZANIA, TANZANIA -- Nobel Peace Prize laureate Nadia Murad said the coronavirus pandemic has increased trafficking of women and gender-based violence, leaving the health and safety of women "on the line." The 27-year-old activist, who was forced into sexual slavery by Islamic State fighters in Iraq, said curfews, lockdowns and travel restrictions imposed by governments to slow the spread of the virus "have had unintended consequences on women worldwide. Source
  • Coronavirus robs biblical Bethlehem of Christmas cheer

    World News CTV News
    BETHLEHEM, PALESTINIAN TERRITORY -- The coronavirus has cast a pall over Christmas celebrations in Bethlehem, all but shutting down the biblical town revered as Jesus' birthplace at the height of the normally cheery holiday season. Missing are the thousands of international pilgrims who normally descend upon the town. Source
  • Rights group asks Sri Lanka to probe deadly prison unrest

    World News CTV News
    COLOMBO, SRI LANKA -- An international human rights group has asked Sri Lanka to conduct an impartial investigation into prison unrest and the use of live ammunition by guards that resulted in the death of eight inmates and injuries to 59 others. Source
  • With Biden, pets poised for a return to the White House

    World News CTV News
    WASHINGTON -- Major Biden is getting an early start in the spotlight as a presidential pet after a play date ended with his owner, President-elect Joe Biden, suffering a broken foot. As if that weren't enough for one weekend, it was also confirmed that Major will have to share the White House with, of all things, a cat. Source
  • Officials worry about hospital capacity as U.S. hits record number of COVID-19 patients hospitalized

    World News CTV News
    As the crush of incoming COVID-19 patients continues to strain hospitals across the U.S., officials across several states are worried their hospitals will be overwhelmed as the holiday season approaches. A record-high 96,039 COVID-19 patients were hospitalized in the U.S. Source
  • Opposition to B.C. pipeline linked to terrorism charges in Washington state

    World News CBC News
    Federal authorities in Seattle have charged two people with a terrorist attack on train tracks, suggesting they were motivated by opposition to the construction of a natural gas pipeline across British Columbia when they interfered with the operation of a railroad in Washington state. Source
  • Calgary hospitals told to conserve oxygen, but doctors fear request is a red flag

    Canada News CBC News
    Alberta Health Services says a memo urging Calgary hospital staff to reduce use of oxygen is a proactive response to an anticipated increase in demand as COVID-19 hospitalizations climb. But some doctors say the request is concerning and not something they've seen before. Source