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Families of Paul Bernardo victims say marriage plans 'appalling' 0

Sam Pazzano, QMI Agency

TORONTO -- "It's appalling and incomprehensible."

Lawyer Tim Danson, who represents the families of schoolgirl murder victims Kristen French, 15, and Leslie Mahaffy, 14, summed up his clients' immediate reaction to the news that a woman is considering marrying the serial killer.

"The notion that a person like Paul Bernardo could be reaching out to someone outside the prison and I assume developing a relationship (leading to marriage) is a concept that they would find appalling on two fronts," said Danson.

"One is that it's appalling that there would be any woman would want to wed him after knowing the horrific, sadistic, violent, sexual crimes that Bernardo perpetrated against innocent girls and the Scarborough rape victims," Danson said this week. "How could anyone be in love with this man and want to marry him?

"Second, the very thought that Bernardo would be reaching out and want to marry someone, even though he's going spend the rest of his life in jail, is further proof of how delusional and how dangerous he really is."

If the French and Mahaffy families could, Danson said, they would strongly oppose any conjugal visits for him.

He wondered whether the cultivation of a relationship was a ploy that Bernardo was using to boost his non-existent chances of obtaining parole, which first arises in 2018.

"If this is some kind of superficial trick to assist any parole possibilities, my view is he'll be incredibly disappointed," Danson said.

He stressed that Bernardo should remain "in protective custody where he can think about the incredible harm and hurt he has caused so many people in both Toronto and the Niagara region."

sam.pazzano@sunmedia.ca


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