By KHRISNA RUSSELL
Tribune Chief Reporter
A JUDGE in Winnipeg, Manitoba denied Canadian fashion designer Peter Nygard bail Friday on a US extradition request over charges of sex trafficking and racketeering.
Justice Shawn Greenberg, according to international news reports, made the decision based on concern that the 79-year-old accused could tamper with witnesses if his release from jail were granted.
Police in Canada arrested Nygard in Winnipeg on December 14, 2020 at the request of US officials under the countries’ extradition treaty.
He faces nine counts of sex trafficking and racketeering in the United States. Nygard, who appeared in court by video, has denied the allegations.
Nygard’s legal team had argued that his poor health left him vulnerable if he were to contract COVID-19 while in prison.
However, Judge Greenberg said that their reasoning did not equate to enough to have Nygard released.
US authorities are accusing Nygard of using his businesses since 1995 to recruit victims in the United States, Canada and the Bahamas to sexually gratify himself and associates.
Nygard was said to have given no discernible reaction to the decision.
Prosecutors had argued the charges were too serious to release Nygard.