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Two Halifax men sentenced to four months for prison assault of Dennis Oland

Dennis Oland arrives at Court of Queen's Bench in Saint John, N.B., on Jan. 3, 2017.

Andrew Vaughan/THE CANADIAN PRESS

Two Halifax men have been sentenced to four months in jail for assaulting Dennis Oland in a New Brunswick prison last year.

Convicted killer Cody Alexander Muise and Aaron Marriott, who was convicted in a 2008 drug shooting, attacked Oland at Atlantic Institution in Renous, N.B., on July 31 of last year.

Both men pleaded guilty in September as their trial was set to begin.

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Oland, a Saint John, N.B., financial planner, was in jail after being convicted of second-degree murder in the 2011 bludgeoning of his multi-millionaire father, businessman Richard Oland. The conviction has since been overturned and Oland released on bail pending a new trial.

On Thursday, the Crown and defence jointly recommended the four-month sentences for Marriott and Muise, who will serve the time concurrently to their current prison terms.

"Although this is an assault on another inmate, all assaults are assaults and it is a criminal charge and will have sanctions," provincial court Judge Natalie LeBlanc said Thursday.

"In order for our institutions to work properly, inmates must obey and follow all the rules in relation to the peace officers but also in relation to one another. Therefore when people make choices to not follow the rules there will be consequences each and every time," she said.

Muise, 28, and Marriott, 27, will also each have to pay a $200 victim fine surcharge.

In September, Crown prosecutor Melanie MacAulay told the court Muise and Marriott attacked Oland, 48, in the visitation area as he hosted two visitors.

"Inmate Muise and inmate Marriott walked up to where they were. Mr. Oland would've been standing up at this point. Mr. Muise and Mr. Marriott would have both walked up to the table and began swinging at him, striking him in the head. He fell to the ground and they attempted to punch and kick him," MacAulay said.

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"The visitors that were with Mr. Oland actually got up and got between the aggressors and the victim. Guards were also on the scene quickly and separated all subjects. Mr. Oland would have received facial injuries and was treated at the institution," she said.

Muise and Marriott both appeared Thursday by video link from prison. They were sentenced separately. Both wore blue prison garb as they sat behind a table in a small room at the Atlantic Institution.

Oland was not present in court and did not give a victim impact statement.

The Oland family founded Moosehead Breweries, whose executive chairman Derek Oland has been a steadfast supporter of his nephew Dennis Oland through his legal battle.

Oland's new trial is scheduled to begin Oct. 10, 2018, and court documents say it could go 65 days – the same length as the original trial.

Muise was convicted of first-degree murder for killing Brandon Hatcher in December 2010 in a gun battle in suburban Halifax, and is serving a life sentence.

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Marriott was sentenced to 15 years for a 2008 drug shooting outside the IWK Health Centre in Halifax.

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