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Kandola will stay in custody until gaybashing trial

Alleged gaybasher's bail revoked after arrest for robbery

BAIL REVOKED. BC Supreme Court Justice Gregory Bowden decided to keep Michael Kandola in custody yesterday until his alleged gaybashing trial in April. Credit: Jeremy Hainsworth photo

 The man charged in the alleged gaybashing of Jordan Smith in 2008 will remain in custody until his assault trial begins this April.

The Crown made a successful application to BC Supreme Court Justice Gregory Bowden yesterday to revoke Michael Kandola’s bail on the aggravated assault charge.

The application follows Kandola’s arrest in December in connection with an alleged robbery in Surrey.

Surrey RCMP allege that on Jun 5, 2009 Kandola robbed Mamta Kumar of jewellery in Surrey and that an imitation firearm was used during the course of the alleged offence.

Kandola now faces one charge of robbery and one for use of an imitation firearm.

On Monday, a Provincial Court judge in Surrey granted Kandola’s request for bail relating to his robbery charges, on the conditions that he keep the peace and be of good behaviour, post a $100,000 surety, not possess any weapons or imitation weapons, reside at his parents’ house, keep a two-block distance from the scene of the alleged crime, report to his bail supervisor and not communicate with the alleged victims or witnesses.

Despite the Surrey court’s decision to grant bail on the 2009 charges, Kandola’s release from detention was contingent upon yesterday’s hearing in BC Supreme Court.

Kandola, who appeared via video at the Feb 16 bail hearing, remained quiet throughout the proceedings. At one point he hung his head. At the beginning and end of the proceedings he appeared to stretch his arms out and yawn.

“It surprised me,” said Kandola’s lawyer Danny Markowitz, referring to Justice Bowden’s decision to keep his client in custody.

“He has no prior record, there’s a substantial surety. A lower court judge released him yesterday and applied the same test today as yesterday,” Markowitz told Xtra West after the hearing.

Outside the Vancouver courtroom, Crown counsel Sandra Cunningham said Kandola breached his original bail conditions by allegedly committing another indictable offence while out on bail for his 2008 assault charge.

Kandola’s 2008 bail terms included a statutory condition to keep the peace and be of good behaviour.

“He was granted bail on Surrey charges,” said Cunningham. “But this is different. Now the Crown is applying to have his original bail revoked because he breached his bail by committing an indictable offence.”

Kandola appeared in person before the Surrey court on Monday wearing a jail-issue orange sweater. As he sat down he scanned the courtroom, seeming to pay keen attention to the witness rows. For most of the hearing he sat with his head low while occasionally glancing from side to side.

If convicted of armed robbery in the Surrey case, Kandola could face a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.

Kandola goes to trial for the alleged gaybashing Apr 26-30.

Smith was walking hand-in-hand with another man on Davie St in September 2008 when Kandola and a group of men allegedly swarmed them, yelling, “You fucking faggot!”

Kandola then allegedly sucker punched Smith and broke his jaw, which had to be wired shut for six weeks to heal.

Kandola was granted bail on the aggravated assault charge in October 2008.