Sask. Court of Queen's Bench cancels jury trials now through to end of year

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The Saskatchewan Court of Queen's Bench is cancelling all jury trials effective now through to the end of the year.

It made the call, announced Thursday, because of the worsening COVID-19 situation across the province.

Jury trials involve many members of the public from a fairly broad geographic area, particularly during the selection process. As well, they require more people to be physically present in the courtroom each day for the duration of the trial, said Chief Justice Martel Popescul.

These and other factors weighed in favour of the postponement, he said.

There were four jury trials scheduled between now and the end of the year.

The accused will have the choice of going ahead with their trials as set, but by judge alone, or having them adjourned to a date in the new year.