Case for accused in London, Ont. vehicle attack put over until June 28

LONDON, ONT. — The man accused of targeting Muslims in a deadly vehicle attack in London, Ont. made a brief appearance in court Monday morning one week after his charges were upgraded to include terrorism.

Nathaniel Veltman, 20, is facing four counts of first-degree murder, and one count of attempted murder in the attack that left four members of the Afzaal family dead and a young boy injured.

At his previous court appearance on June, 14, Veltman learned that his charges would be updated to include terrorism under section 82 of the Criminal Code.

Federal and provincial Crown Attorneys informed the court that they had received consent to pursue terrorism proceedings in relation to the June 6, attack.

Monday morning Veltman appeared by video from the Elgin Middlesex Detension Centre (EMDC).

The appearance lasted only a few minutes as the court was told that Veltman was finalizing retaining a lawyer. 

The court was told that he is in the process of retaining Toronto lawyer Christopher Hicks as his counsel. Hicks represented one of the accused in the Bandidos murder trial.

The case was put over another week in order for that finalization to take place. 

A publication ban has been placed on the proceedings.

Veltman’s next appearance will be June 28 and 9:15 a.m. via video in London, Ont. 

The deceased have been identified as 46-year-old Salman Afzaal, his 44-year-old wife Madiha, their 15-year-old daughter Yumnah and her 74-year-old grandmother, Talat Afzaal.

Meanwhile the couple’s nine-year-old son Fayez Afzaal has been recovering from serious injuries sustained in the attack.

He was released from hospital early last week to continue his recovery from home.

Fundraising efforts have raised millions in funds for the young man.

Police have alleged that the attack on the evening of June 6, was a planned and premeditated act against Muslims.

The family had been out for an evening walk along Hyde Park Road at South Carriage Road when they were hit by a driver in a black pickup.

None of the charges have been proven in court.

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