Baron’s trial not likely until after municipal election

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A trial date for Petrolia’s former CAO will be set Sept. 28.
Manny Baron has been charged with breach of trust by a public official after it was revealed by The Independent he owned two building being used by the town.
At the time, Baron said he had not disclosed his numbered company owned both the 4168 Robert St., which at the time was the youth and senior’s centre and 395 Fletcher, which the town was using for storage.
After the revelations, town councillors hired an investigator to look into the matter. John Fleming gave councillors his report on the incident the same day Baron resigned after negotiating his own exit deal.
Council members refused to release that report saying it was part of labour relations. That assertion is being challenged under the Freedom of Information Act by The Independent.
By March, the OPP had charged Baron.
The former CAO, who now is the top administrator in Mapleton, has not had to appear personally in court yet. Recently, lawyers representing Baron agreed to move the case to assignment court Sept. 28, where a time will be set for the trial by judge and jury.
While Baron hasn’t entered an official plea, his lawyer, Phillip Millar, has said he will plead not guilty and fight the charges.
It is not clear when the trial might take place, however one court official says it would be highly unlikely Baron’s trial would take place before the municipal election in October.

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