Sheree and the boys will be coming home Monday, Nov. 26 as originally planned.
The Hallidays are in Spain for Philip’s trial, which everyone had expected to wrap up this Friday.
Instead a judge cited “a scheduling conflict”, and unexpectedly adjourned the case today until Monday, Dec. 3 –Philip’s birthday as coincidence would have it.
Sheree, Daren and Cody had tried to rebook their flight, but decided it was too expensive, says Peter Dickie chair of the support society.
The verdict could take another two weeks to a month or so, says Dickie who was speaking to Joanne Dunn’s husband.
Joanne is in Spain with the Halliday’s, as is Sheree’s sister Heather Lefort and her husband Gerard.
Dickie say Philip’s lawyers are “very positive.”
“The lawyers are confident that Philip will be found innocent when the time comes,” he says. “Everybody watching the trial can see he knew nothing about the drugs on that ship.”
Dickie says the support society had another $900 or so left in the bank they would have sent to the Hallidays had they wanted to stay.
Dickie says they were only holding onto that money to get started with the next round of fundraising.
The society he said slowed down their fundraising efforts in the summer with the intention of waiting for a not guilty verdict.
“A few corporations told us they didn’t want to be involved, especially where it is a drug case,” says Dickie. “But they said, by all means come back and talk to us when you get an innocent verdict.”
The society raised about $17,000, well short of Dickie’s original goal of $250,000.
Sheree has spent well over $100,000 in legal fees already, he says, and no one knew originally how long the trial process was going to drag on.
“Plus Philip is going to need counselling and medical attention when he gets back,” says Dickie. “We might be able to do it with less than the original goal but we do need to raise some more money.”
After the Digby Baptist Church raised about $5,000 with a benefit and another $2,000 at a yard sale, they sent out a plea to 700 other churches in the Maritimes asking for support.
“We heard from six of them,” says Dickie. “One of them sent us a $100 and said “We’re awful sorry it’s only $100.’”
Dickie told them they shouldn’t be sorry.
“If every church sent us $100, we’d have $70,000,” he says. “A lot of churches tell us they are praying for the Hallidays. That’s wonderful, I’m grateful. But now it’s time to step up to the plate. There are lots of ways they can help – if it’s a fundraiser, a benefit or just a special collection.”
Noah Richler told the Courier this evening the family will get to visit with Philip at the jail in Aranjuez, outside Madrid, this Saturday,
The Courier is expecting another brief from their Sandy Cove correspondent in Spain tomorrow, Friday, Nov. 23.