National News

Some lawsuits against Russell Williams settled

Col. Russell Williams leaves court in Belleville, Ont., on October 21, 2010. A published report says sex-killer Russell Williams has reached an out-of-court settlement with some of his victims. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette -
Col. Russell Williams leaves court in Belleville, Ont., on October 21, 2010. A published report says sex-killer Russell Williams has reached an out-of-court settlement with some of his victims. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
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By The Canadian Press

TORONTO - Sex-killer Russell Williams has reached an out-of-court settlement with some of his victims.

The lawyer for one of Williams' sexual assault victims and the family of one of Williams' murder victims says financial settlements have been resolved "to the mutual satisfaction of all parties."

Michael Pretsell says in a statement that the lawsuits on behalf of Williams' first sexual assault victim, "Jane Doe," and the family of murder victim Jessica Lloyd are now settled.

Pretsell's clients had also sued Williams' wife, Mary Elizabeth Harriman, alleging Williams secretly and fraudulently transferred assets to his wife in March 2010 after he was criminally charged, including their house in Ottawa.

She had vigorously denied those claims and Pretsell says the lawsuits against Harriman have now been dismissed.

Williams, once a rising star in the Canadian Forces at CFB Trenton in eastern Ontario, was sentenced to life in prison in October 2010 after pleading guilty to the murders of Lloyd and Cpl. Marie-France Comeau.

Lawyers for Williams and the victims could not be reached for comment on Monday night. Harriman's lawyer is on vacation, but her office said she had no comment on the suits against her client being dismissed.

Another lawsuit against Williams by sexual assault victim Laurie Massicotte remains active.

Massicotte, who has chosen to reveal her identity and speak publicly about her ordeal, filed a nearly $7-million lawsuit against Williams. In her claim she says the attack left her fearful, humiliated, depressed, suicidal, unable to function in society and she will require extensive therapy.

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