Cameras will be allowed in the courtroom for Peter Nygård’s extradition hearing this fall.
That was officially approved Thursday during a hearing in Manitoba Courts. The imprisoned founder of Nygård Industries is facing a nine-count indictment that includes charges of sex trafficking and racketeering that was brought forward last year by federal prosecutors in the Southern District of New York. Nygård was arrested in December in Canada at the request of U.S. officials under the countries’ extradition treaty. He is being held at the Headingley Correctional Center, where he is awaiting the extradition hearing.
Nygård has been accused by dozens of women of varying degrees of criminal behavior including rape and sexual abuse. Some of the accusers said they were minors when some of the incidents were said to have occurred. Some have alleged that incidents occurred at Nygård-owned properties in the U.S., the Bahamas and Canada.
Nygård was not present for Thursday’s hearing. He was unable to listen in remotely or to have his image transmitted due to technical difficulties tied to the courtroom that was used Thursday.
Nygård’s legal team and a spokesman for him have previously disputed the allegations against him.
The extradition hearing is expected to be held in mid-November. Ironing out the protocol, Nygård’s legal team and lawyers for the attorney general of Canada agreed that cameras would be subject to the court’s supervision and direction.
The media’s interest in the allegations against Nygård — some of which were part of a class-action lawsuit filed in the U.S. in February 2020 — has increased since his arrest in December. His lawyers tried unsuccessfully to have him released on bail and placed under house arrest, due to concerns that the 79-year-old could contract the coronavirus in jail.
In addition to news coverage of the self-made millionaire’s legal problems and pending extradition hearing, Nygård has been the subject of a docu-series “The Fifth Estate,” the Discovery+ series “Unseamly: The Investigation of Peter Nygård,” and the Canadian Broadcast Corp.’s “Evil by Design.” His company, which specialized in affordable sportswear and was said to be a $500 million entity at one point, was placed in receivership last year.