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Man accused of Calgary sex assaults may be getting new lawyer for French trial

Richard Mantha is seen in a sketch from his first court appearance on April 12, 2023. The 59-year-old faces charges of kidnapping, forcible confinement, sexual assault and other offences related to attacks on Calgary women. (CTV Calgary/Damien Wood) Richard Mantha is seen in a sketch from his first court appearance on April 12, 2023. The 59-year-old faces charges of kidnapping, forcible confinement, sexual assault and other offences related to attacks on Calgary women. (CTV Calgary/Damien Wood)
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A man accused of sexually assaulting seven women from Calgary may be getting a new lawyer after his trial came to a halt a month ago.

Richard Robert Mantha was seven days into his French-language trial in late January, when he told court he had lost confidence in his legal team and fired his lawyers.

Efforts are being made to get the trial back on track.

A lawyer with Legal Aid Alberta appeared in court on Mantha's behalf but withdrew from the case saying his grasp of French is insufficient.

Another lawyer says he plans to apply through legal aid to take on Mantha's case and will provide an update March 14.

Mantha faces 20 charges, including kidnapping, sexual assault with a weapon and administering a noxious substance.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 1, 2024.

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