The operator of one of the boats in a 2019 fatal crash involving a vessel driven by Linda O’Leary, wife of businessman and reality TV star Kevin O’Leary, was convicted in absentia last September of failing to exhibit a navigation light, according to provincial offence documents obtained by CBC News.

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Ottawa-based criminal lawyer Michael Spratt, who is not involved in any of the litigation around the crash, said it will be hard to not see the conviction as an admission of guilt to a degree.

“It is slightly odd that someone would accept responsibility, in essence, but not plead guilty,” Spratt said. “By paying the ticket, that will be seen at both the civil and the careless-boating trial as an admission. That may change things.

“The fact that whether the boat that Miss O’Leary struck had navigational lights on is an important factor both in allocating responsibility and liability in the civil proceeding. But also a factor that can play into the careless-boating charge that Miss O’Leary is facing.”

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Read Katie Nicholson’s full story: CBC News

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