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Dangerous offender designation hearing underway for man with history of pedophilia

Curtis Poburan in 2022. (Photo provided.) Curtis Poburan in 2022. (Photo provided.)
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A hearing is underway to determine if a man with a history of sexual offences against children should be designated a dangerous offender.

First, the court had to rule if Curtis Poburan was fit for the proceedings.

A court-ordered fitness assessment was completed at the Edmonton Remand Centre on June 7, 2024.

"In the Crown's view, there's ample support in this report that Mr. Poburan is fit to proceed," said Wendy Ekert, Crown prosecutor.

Poburan, who fired his lawyer and is representing himself, was asked about the report.

"It’s a catch-22 because I don’t have glasses to read the 4,000-page report," he said.

"In his opinion, you are fit to stand trial," Ekert said after reading part of the report in court.

"That's not true your honour," said Poburan, initially claiming he didn't see a doctor.

He went on to tell the court he's "been beaten to the point where I don't even have the f***ing mental capacity to stand anymore."

Poburan continued to use vulgar language as he lashed out at several people in the courtroom including Justice Doreen Sulyma.

"I don't think you know what the frick you're doing," he said to her.

"I don’t even know what my f***ing charges are and it’s been four years," he said.

Two sheriffs next to the prisoner's box asked Poburan to calm down and watch his language a few times before the Crown suggested it was time for the court to issue a warning.

"If you become disruptive we're going to have to move you to a separate courtroom with a feed so you can hear the proceedings," Justice Sulyma told him.

She said she didn't mind the swear words but asked him to be polite. Poburan did calm down after the warning.

After he was found fit, attention turned to a request from Poburan to change his plea on the charge of abducting a boy in the Callingwood neighbourhood in 2021.

About a year after his arrest, Poburan pleaded guilty to the abduction charge as well as using an imitation firearm to commit the offence and violating probation orders.

He told the court his lawyer "pressured" him into the guilty plea and said he wanted to change it.

"I told her many times that I didn't wish to make a guilty plea but to be nice I just plead guilty," he said.

Ekert suggested having his former lawyer, who was in the courthouse, brought in to testify but Poburan refused to waive lawyer-client privilege specific to the plea.

Ekert argued it was a "fully informed guilty plea" and he "has simply changed his mind".

Justice Sulyma said there was no 'objective evidence' to support Poburan's allegations he was forced into the plea and his request was dismissed.

Starting Tuesday the court will hear from a number of experts and witnesses as it determines whether Poburan should be designated a dangerous offender.

The Justice suggested Poburan should start thinking about any evidence he'd like to present or witnesses to call next week.

"The amount of witnesses I would intend to call is in excess of 10,000 people," he replied.

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