Penticton judge takes hard line on men recruited to intimidate victim by man with marriage troubles | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Penticton judge takes hard line on men recruited to intimidate victim by man with marriage troubles

Two men were sentenced to 4-1/2 years each, 1 year for individual crimes and 3-1/2 years for a mutual crime in which they robbed a man while disguised.

PENTICTON - It was all Shannon Masuskapoe’s idea to assault a man he suspected was having an affair with his wife, but the two men who helped him paid a heavy price for it today.

Penticton Provincial Court judge Gregory Koturbash heard today, Aug. 30, that William Tyler Soloman and James Colt Wilson were recruited by Masuskapoe on April 9, 2016 to join him when he went to the man’s Pickering Avenue apartment. They wore masks and carried knives.

What Masuskapoe did next didn’t matter for today’s hearing, but court heard that Soloman and Wilson took the victim’s wallet and helped themselves to his credit card, making several purchases.

This wasn’t out of character for either man. Koturbash said they had “unenviable criminal records" and said jail was simply "an occupational hazard.” Indeed this wasn’t the only crimes for which they were sentenced today.

Soloman, born 1984, was sentence to 3.5 years for his part in the events, but he got another year on his sentence for his part in stealing more than $12,000 in personal items from a Princeton self storage facility in Sept. 2015. He faces a lifetime firearms ban, a restitution order for $7,400 and a number of victim surcharges. With time served, Soloman has 2.5 years remaining in his sentence.

Wilson, born in 1989, was sentenced to 2.5 years for the mutual crimes committed with Soloman, and an additional year for possession of a firearm, found at his home after he was arrested. With credit for time served, Wilson has 2.5 years left to serve.

Defence lawyer James Pennington asked court to waive Wilson’s $1,400 in victim surcharge fees, because his client would not likely have the means to pay once his jail term was served.

Koturbash, however, drew a hard line

“You can talk to your local MP because I know Mr. Trudeau made some promises about revisiting that surcharge issue, but that hasn’t happened,” Koturbash said. “There haven’t been any changes to the legislation and I am obliged by law to impose it because I don’t have any discretion on this.”

Wilson asked if he could do more jail time in lieu of the hefty fees, but again the judge wasn’t having it. Koturbash said not only could he not make that order, he was philosophically opposed to jailing people in lieu of their ability to pay a fine.

“The second reason is, the Victims of Crime Act regulation states I must give the offender a minimum period of time to pay the surcharge,” he said. “The third reason is, the criminal code was amended prior to the amendment that could have been used to apply to serve time in default. Those words were removed from the criminal code and now only the Crown can make that application.”

To contact a reporter for this story, email Steve Arstad or call 250-488-3065 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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News from © iNFOnews, 2017

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