By The Canadian Press
WINNIPEG — An extradition hearing for a former Canadian fashion mogul facing sex trafficking and racketeering charges in the United States is being pushed up a month.
Peter Nygard was to appear in court from Nov. 15 to Nov. 19, but court documents show the date has been changed to Oct. 1 at the request of the Crown and Nygard’s counsel.
Nygard was arrested in December under the Extradition Act and faces nine counts in the Southern District of New York.
Authorities there accuse the 80-year-old of using his influence in the fashion industry to lure women and girls with the promise of modelling and other financial opportunities.
Defence lawyer Brian Greenspan told court earlier this year that his client denies all allegations.
Last week, the Supreme Court of Canada denied Nygard’s request to challenge two lower court decisions that denied him bail.
Nygard has remained in custody since his arrest. His bail was first denied in February. The judge cited concerns that Nygard would contact witnesses if released. He appealed that decision and was again denied release in March.
His lawyers had presented the bail hearing with a release plan that included monitoring all emails and text messages. It also involved an in-home security guard and 24-hour video surveillance.
Federal prosecutors argued that Nygard had the finances and personnel available to assist him in obstructing justice.
The extradition request from the U.S. details accounts from seven alleged victims who are expected to testify in a criminal trial in that country.
The women allege their livelihoods and their movements became dependent on having sex with Nygard. They say they were coerced through financial means or physical force.
Nygard is also the subject of a class-action lawsuit in the U.S. involving 57 women with similar allegations.
Nygard founded his fashion company in Winnipeg in 1967. It grew from a partial stake in a women’s garment manufacturer to a brand name sold in stores around the world.
He stepped down as chairman of his company after the FBI and police raided his offices in New York City in February 2020.
— With files from CTV Winnipeg