Crown prosecutors say they are staying six sexual assault charges against a doctor in rural Manitoba.

They told a Winnipeg court Wednesday that they couldn't go through with a trial for Dr. Arcel Bissonnette after new evidence came into play.

Court of King's Bench Justice Anne Turner heard from Nadine Vasas that the Crown reassessed the charges against Bissonnette. 

"Based on that assessment, the Crown is entering a stay of proceedings at this time," Vasas said. 

Bissonnette was facing six sexual assault charges for alleged assaults on female patients when he worked in Ste. Anne.

The trial was supposed to start last week but was delayed to address evidence that may have been lost or destroyed.

The former lead investigator in the case told court last week she kept detailed records in notebooks that she left with the police department when she took a new job in 2019, but defence lawyers say they only got a few pages of notes. 

Bissonnette's lawyers said they were considering their own stay application, citing an abuse of process.

The charges were from Bissonnette's time working at the town's hospital and a medical centre.  

Bissonnette is facing another 16 counts of sexual assault that are to be tried separately.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published on Jan. 25, 2023.