Accused letter bomber faces third attempted-murder charge, plans to plead not guilty
Published Thursday, July 23, 2015 9:32AM CST Last Updated Friday, July 24, 2015 11:41AM CST
A new lawyer and new charges for Guido Amsel, who stands accused in a letter-bombs case.
Amsel now faces a third attempted-murder charge after an explosive device was sent to a Stradbrook Avenue law office. Amsel's lawyer said his client plans to plead not guilty.
Amsel was originally charged with two counts of attempted murder and one count of aggravated assault, along with a number of explosives-related charges.
Those were in relation to the July 3 River Avenue explosion, which seriously injured family lawyer Maria Mitousis. An explosive device was also found at a Washington Avenue business on July 4.
"Obviously, there was more work to be done, and yesterday was when they were able to pull him out of custody and process on those charges," said Const. Eric Hofley of the Winnipeg Police Service.
The new attempted murder charge stems from an explosive device found at the Orle Bargen Davidson LLP law firm on July 5.
On July 6, officers searched Amsel’s residence on Pandora Avenue.
"The search resulted in the seizure of a firearm along with ammunition," said Const. Hofley.
Amsel also faces charges of possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose, storing a firearm or restricted weapon contrary to regulations, unlawful possession of explosives and causing an explosive substance to explode with intent to cause bodily harm.
High-profile Winnipeg lawyer Martin Glazer will now represent him.
Glazer issued a statement on Thursday.
“Mr. Amsel has instructed me that he will be pleading not guilty. I intend to provide a vigorous defence in accordance with his instructions,” wrote Glazer.
“He denies these allegations which remain unproven and untested,” wrote Glazer.
"Mr. Amsel has no criminal record, is 49 years old, a taxpayer and successful businessman with an excellent reputation in the community with the people he has serviced in his business," wrote Glazer.
Winnipeg police say they don't expect more charges against Amsel.
“Further information down the line might come to light which would require investigators to lay further charges, but at this time, my understanding is the investigation is complete," said Const. Eric Hofley.
Amsel remains in custody.
Full statement from Martin Glazer
As lawyers we stand on guard to protect the constitutional rights of all people, regardless of what they may be accused of. Mr. Guido Amsel has the same rights as anyone else charged with a crime.
He has the right to a lawyer of his choice and the right to a fair trial.
Mr. Amsel’s case will be decided in court, not by the media.
Informed members of the public understand and respect the law which guarantees Mr. Amsel’s rights and cloaks him with the presumption of innocence.
Mr. Amsel remarried ten years ago. He is a devoted husband and loving father.
He denies these allegations which remain unproven and untested.
There is no confession and in fact Mr. Amsel denies the accusations made against him.
Based of the information received so far the police have no direct evidence against him. The case appears to be built on assumptions and circumstantial evidence that has an innocent explanation.
Mr. Amsel has no criminal record, is 49 years old, a taxpayer and successful businessman with an excellent reputation in the community with the people he has serviced in his business.
Mr. Amsel has instructed me that he will be pleading not guilty. I intend to provide a vigorous defence in accordance with his instructions.