ANCHOR: A mistrial has been declared in the case of a multimillionaire and his dominatrix mistress who was charged with plotting to murder the millionaire's wife. As CTV's Chris Eby reports, the judge called it off after the unexpected death of a key witness.
SANDRA RINELLA: Why? Because I waited six years for my day in court and I still didn't get it.
CHRIS EBY: A courtroom drama that didn't need any more twists got one today.
EDWARD GREENSPAN: This is a rather bizarre turn of events.
CHRIS EBY: A mistrial in the case of multimillionaire Alexander Petraitis, his former mistress, dominatrix Sandra Lynn Rinella and their alleged plot to use this man, Kerry Anderson, to kill Petraitis' wife of 40 years, Kristen.
A jury was impaneled, ready to hear evidence. But then it emerged that over the weekend a witness died suddenly and unexpectedly. The mysterious death causing insurmountable legal hurdles, forcing the judge to declare a mistrial.
EDWARD GREENSPAN: I can't ever recall ever being involved in a case where a subpoena is served on a witness and they're possibly murdered.
JOSEPH NEUBERGER: It's a suspicious circumstance because when a car has been on fire to the extent that it was and the body is completely charred, one has to be a bit concerned about the circumstances and how this individual met his death.
CHRIS EBY: It's been six years since the charges were laid. Rinella questions if a fair trial is even possible now.
SANDRA RINELLA: Not now, obviously not.
CHRIS EBY: A new jury will be selected in September. There is an ongoing police investigation into this witness' death. As you heard the lawyer say there, his charred remains were found inside a burnt out car in Eganville, west of Ottawa. The initial investigation has turned up no signs of foul play. Live at the University Avenue Courthouse, I'm Chris Eby. Christine, back to you.