The sentence of the killer of the Quebec mosque will be known next Friday

The Supreme Court of Canada has announced that it is ready to render its sentence in the Alexandre Bissonnette case on May 27.

The sentence of the killer of the Quebec mosque will be known next Friday

The Supreme Court of Canada has announced that it is ready to render its sentence in the Alexandre Bissonnette case on May 27.

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The author of the Quebec mosque attack that killed six members of the Islamic Cultural Center of Quebec will know his sentence in a week. The Supreme Court of Canada has indicated that it is ready to publish its judgment on May 27.

This is a long-awaited sentence that is likely to cause legal caution across Canada. The highest court in the country will therefore decide between the different sentences put on the table since the decision of trial judge François Huot who had established that a sentence of 40 years in prison was appropriate in the case of the accused of whom was 27 at the time of the crime.

Up to 150 years

The debate to be decided by the nine judges concerns the "discounted sentences" in the case of multiple murders. In 2011 the Conservative government amended a provision of the Criminal Code that now allows for the addition of 25-year ineligibility periods before parole for each murder victim.

However, judges have interpreted section 745.51 in different ways for a decade. The case of Justin Bourque, who killed three RCMP officers in Moncton, earning him a 75-year prison sentence without the possibility of parole, is a good example.

Deeming it unconstitutional, Judge Huot then took the liberty of rewriting the law to make section 745.51 compliant with the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms by imposing a 40-year prison sentence. However, this decision was overturned by the Court of Appeal, which declared section 754.51 unconstitutional by reducing the period of ineligibility for parole to 25 years.

It is this decision which is being reviewed by the Supreme Court and which will be announced next week, putting an end to this legal debate which has been going on for several years in Canada.

Alexandre Bissonnette was found guilty of eight murders and 40 attempted murders.


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