Canada: Vancouver Judge acquits brothers in attack on gay couple

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Two brothers have been acquitted in the case of an assault on two gay men, after a judge ruled that prosecutors had not proven they were the same men who beat up the men outside their Vancouver condo.

Parminder Bassi, 33, and Ravinder Bassi, 29, were both acquitted of assault causing bodily harm. The charges came from an attack in June 2010 which left two gay men concussed, with cuts and bruises outside their condo building, reports the Vancouver Sun. 

“Ultimately, what the case came down to was the judge’s conclusion that the identity of the two accused had not been proven beyond a reasonable doubt – as a result they were acquitted,” said the Attorney General’s criminal justice branch spokesman Neil MacKenzie.

A few weeks after the alleged attack, the two brothers, neither of whom had criminal records, were arrested by police. Their arrests came after the Vancouver Police Department released video footage of two suspects fleeing the area of the attack, prompting tips from the public.

A spokesperson for the police, Constable Jana McGuinness said that the attack had been treated as a hate crime.

The victims of the attack were gay rights activist, David Holtzman, and his partner, Peter Regier. Mr Holtzman died of an unrelated heart attack in April 2012.