Glace Bay pastor committed to trial on sex offences

Staff ~ The Cape Breton Post
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SYDNEY — A 61-year-old Glace Bay pastor was committed to stand trial Wednesday on three counts of sexual interference.

Robert Stewart Lawther, 61, is alleged to have committed the offences between January 2006 and December 2011. The complainants are three young females.

Provincial court Judge Brian Williston ordered Lawther to trial after presiding over a preliminary hearing last week. He had reserved decision in the case until Wednesday.

Lawther has elected to be tried by Supreme Court judge and jury and is now scheduled to appear in Supreme Court Sept. 3 to receive a trial date.

Evidence presented at preliminary hearings is banned from publication until a final decision is rendered in the case.

Meanwhile, Lawther is also back in court Sept. 4 to enter a plea on a charge of breaching a court order by allegedly having contact with one of the complainants in the case.

After being charged with sex offences, Lawther stepped down as pastor at Bethel Family Church in Glace Bay.

During a provincial court appearance Wednesday a condition of release was relaxed in allowing Lawther to attend places where young people may gather provided he is accompanied by a responsible adult. Such places would include community pools, parks, playgrounds and other such sites.

Organizations: Supreme Court, Bethel Family Church

Geographic location: Glace Bay

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