Court of Appeal in Vancouver. (Photo: Tom Zytaruk)

New trials ordered for two accused robbers convicted in Surrey court

They were convicted of 14 crimes following robberies in Surrey, Langley and Maple Ridge

Two men who were convicted of 14 crimes by a Surrey provincial court judge following robberies in Surrey, Langley and Maple Ridge will get new trials after the Court of Appeal for British Columbia decided the lower court judge had erred in his analysis.

“In this case, the judge made a number of legal errors, materially misapprehended evidence, and failed to given sufficient reasons,” Justice Sunni Stromberg-Stein decided, with Justices Daphne Smith and Richard Goepel concurring.

The accused, Andrew James Aikman and Jayson Franklin, had been convicted in Surrey provincial court for crimes committed in August 2014.

“The key issue at trial was identification. Some of the offences were captured on poor quality video surveillance. The evidence implicating Mr. Franklin and Mr. Aikman was largely circumstantial,” Stromberg-Stein noted.

The court heard that on Aug. 9, 2014 Franklin was captured on surveillance video at an Esso station in Surrey redeeming and buying lottery tickets.

He was wearing a red ball cap, black runners with white and grey markings and carrying a green canvas bag.

A white Ford F350 with B.C. plates, last seen in Langley at about 10 p.m. that day, was recorded on the toll camera crossing Golden Ears Bridge towards Maple Ridge at 1:12 a.m. the following morning, and a truck matching its description was caught on video surveillance pulling up to a Chevron station in Maple Ridge at 2:32 a.m.

READ ALSO: Judge cuts sentence of Surrey drug dealer who was ready for ‘gun warfare’

READ ALSO: Surrey driver who killed two women was doing 167 km/h when he lost control

The video surveillance showed two masked men breaking the glass on the gas station’s front doors.

They took cash, lottery tickets and cigarettes. One of the robbers, armed with a wrench, was subsequently identified as Franklin wearing a red ball cap and skull mask.

The Crown alleged Aikman was his accomplice.

Later that morning the Ford was seen on surveillance video at a Petro-Canada station in Surrey and Franklin, identified as the driver, checked 27 scratch-and-win lottery tickets, 23 of which had been shipped to the Chevron that was robbed.

On Aug. 12 a red Escalade was reported stolen in Surrey. That same day two men broke into a Shell station and made off with roughly 40 cartons of smokes. Within the hour, two men robbed a Mac’s convenience store in Surrey of cigarettes, a cash register and a large safe.

One man had a wrench, like in the Chevron robbery.

The court heard the stolen Escalade was later found, containing the stolen safe, cigarettes and a tire iron for a Ford.

The white Ford was also found. In both vehicles, Stromberg-Stein noted, there was no DNA or fingerprints suitable for analysis.

Stromberg-Stein wrote in her Sept. 6 reasons for judgment that Franklin at trial “essentially” conceded the Crown had proven he was guilty in the Chevron robbery, the face-masking count related to that, and possession of the white Ford F50. But he successfully appealed his other convictions

The appeal court ordered a new trial for Franklin on the remaining counts and a new trial for Aikman on all counts.



tom.zytaruk@surreynowleader.com

Like us on Facebook Follow us on Instagram and follow Tom on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Pitt Meadows Cycle donates cycling glasses to staff at Royal Columbian Hospital

Owner, Rob Laluk, offered 26 pairs of the handy glasses free of charge

LETTER: Maple Ridge cyclist appreciative of strangers’ kindness

Thanks to the nurse and others who came to injured biker’s aid

UPDATE: Canadians awake to extra COVID-19 emergency benefit money, feds clarify changes

The CRA and federal officials are working to clarify the confusion around payments

B.C. sorting medical equipment sales, donation offers for COVID-19

Supply hub has call out for masks, gowns, coronavirus swabs

B.C. records five more deaths due to COVID-19, 45 new cases

A total of 838 people have recovered from the virus

Major crimes investigating sudden death of North Okanagan child

The 8 year old was flown to Kelowna General Hospital and died hours later

BC institution has highest number of positive results for COVID-19

11 inmates in Mission test positive for coronavirus, more than any other federal prison in Canada

Easter Bunny added to B.C.’s list of essential workers

Premier John Horgan authorizes bunny to spread “eggs-ellent cheer” throughout province

Travellers returning to B.C. must have self-isolation plan or face quarantine: Horgan

Premier John Horgan says forms must be filled out by travellers

More than 400 animals have been adopted amid pandemic: B.C. SPCA

People are taking this time of social distancing to find a loyal companion through the animal welfare group

Most Read