Crown expected to call new witness as Jian Ghomeshi's trial resumes

TORONTO - The sexual assault trial of former CBC Radio host Jian Ghomeshi is set to resume in a Toronto courtroom today.

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Crown prosecutors are expected to call a new witness to testify, though they have not said who it will be.

Ghomeshi, the former host of the popular culture show "Q," has pleaded not guilty to four counts of sexual assault and one count of overcome resistance by choking.

Ghomeshi has always denied any wrongdoing and claimed his sexual relations were consensual.

Earlier this week, the trial heard from one of the three women who are behind the allegations at the centre of the case.

The woman testified earlier this week that Ghomeshi, whom she described as a charming gentleman with a dark side - attacked her in December 2002 and January 2003.

During the first incident, the woman said Ghomeshi suddenly yanked her hair while they were sharing a "sensuous" kiss. In the second incident in his home, she testified,he once again abruptly pulled her hair while they were kissing and punched her in the head.

Under intense cross-examination by Ghomeshi's lawyer, the woman, who can not be identified, acknowledged that she had sent two flirtatious emails to Ghomeshi long after the alleged assaults.

Those emails were brought up in court after the trial heard the woman testify that she didn't contact Ghomeshi after the alleged assaults, save for perhaps writing him an email in anger which she may or may not have sent.

The woman told Ghomeshi's defence lawyer that she sent the emails as "bait" to get Ghomeshi to contact her so she could demand an explanation for the alleged assaults. She also said she didn't remember the emails when she spoke to police and to Crown prosecutors.

If convicted of sexual assault, Ghomeshi faces a maximum sentence of 18 months behind bars. The choking charge against him, however, carries a potential life sentence.


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