N.S. Appeal Court overturns sex assault conviction of Canada Border Services agent

Justice

Nova Scotia's highest court has ordered a new trial for a former Canada Border Services agent who was found guilty last year of sexually assaulting and extorting a woman facing deportation.

Chief Justice Michael Wood of the Nova Scotia Court of Appeal wrote in the decision released Wednesday that trial judge Suzanne Hood of the Nova Scotia Supreme Court made several errors in law in the original conviction of Carie Dexter Willis.

Willis launched an appeal last year of his conviction and six-year prison sentence.

Writing on behalf of the unanimous three-judge appeal panel, Wood said that Hood subjected Willis's evidence to a ``high degree of scrutiny, often on issues of marginal relevance,'' and didn't apply the same standard to his accuser.

He said that was the case over the issue of whether Willis, 59, was circumcised.

The accuser had testified he was not circumcised, but both Willis and his wife testified he was. Wood called this a ``significant contradiction.''