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Friday, April 30, 2010

Gay Basher Gets 17-Month Sentence

BACKSTORY:
In September 2008, Jordan Smith and his boyfriend were verbally accosted by a group of men while walking hand-in-hand down the street in Vancouver's West End. The group started shouting homophobic slurs at the couple. One of the men, Michael Kandola, sucker-punched Smith, who fell to the ground unconscious. Smith's jaw was broken and had to be wired shut for six weeks.

TODAY'S RULING:
B.C. Supreme Court Justice Joel Groves found Michael Kandola guilty of a hate crime and sentenced him to 17 months in jail, reduced to 12 months after credit for pre-sentence custody.

Kandola also received 12 months’ probation with conditions; Kandola must stay away from the downtown area and have no contact with Smith or his friend.

The judge said that the crime against Jordan Smith was a “senseless” and “vicious” attack motivated by hate and noted that Kandola’s punch was “vicious and unprovoked. It is a cowardly-like approach, sneaking up on someone from behind.”

Kandola's lawyer stated that they are “seriously considering” an appeal.

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