Former Canadian hostage in Afghanistan facing 15 criminal charges

Jan. 3 (UPI) — A Canadian man who was held captive in Afghanistan for five years with his wife has been charged with more than a dozen criminal offenses in Ottawa.

Joshua Boyle, 34, is charged with eight counts of assault, two counts of sexual assault and two counts of unlawful confinement, one count each of misleading police to “divert suspicion from himself,” uttering a death threat and administering a noxious substance, court records showed on Tuesday.

The alleged offenses leading to the 15 charges against Boyle took place between Oct. 14 and Dec. 30.

Records show there are two alleged victims, but their identities are subject to a publication ban and can’t be reported.

Boyle’s lawyer, Eric Granger, said his client doesn’t have a history of prior incidents and told CBC News he is eager to defend him in court.

“Mr. Boyle is presumed innocent. He’s never been in trouble before. No evidence has been provided yet, which is typical at this early stage,” Granger said. “We look forward to receiving the evidence and defending him against these charges.”

Boyle and his American wife, Caitlan Coleman, and their three children were sent to Canada in October after being held captive by the Taliban-affiliated Haqqani network in Afghanistan since 2012.

Coleman was pregnant with their first child when they were abducted and all of their children were born in captivity.

Boyle said he and his family were subject to beatings and torture, and their captors raped Coleman and authorized the slaying of their infant daughter.

Boyle lived in his parents’ home in Smiths Falls when he returned to Canada in October, but court records showed he and his family were living in a downtown Ottawa apartment at the time of his arrest.

Boyle was previously married to the sister of Guantanamo detainee Omar Khadr.


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