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Appeal dismissed for American woman who plotted Halifax shopping mall massacre

American Lindsay Souvannarath leaves provincial court in Halifax on Friday, March 6, 2015. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan

Nova Scotia’s appeal court dismissed Lindsay Kanitha Souvannarath’s request to have her life imprisonment sentence shortened on Wednesday.

In April 2017, Souvannarath, 26, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit murder in a 2015 plot to shoot people at the Halifax Shopping Centre.

She later asked the appeal court for a fixed term of 12 to 14 years.

READ MORE: Appeal heard for American woman who plotted Halifax shopping mall massacre

On Feb. 13, 2015, Souvannarath, travelling on a one-way ticket, flew to Halifax from her home in Chicago, Ill., to meet with James Gamble, a 19-year-old with whom she had developed a bond on Facebook. They both planned to commit a massacre at the Halifax Shopping Centre on Valentine’s Day.

Souvannarath claims her sentence is flawed by errors of law and “manifestly harsh and excessive.” She argued that it was wrong to compare the 2015 conspiracy to a terrorism offence and to treat her lack of remorse as an aggravating factor.

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WATCH (April 16, 2018): Plans of Halifax mall plot revealed in court

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Plans of Halifax mall plot revealed in court – Apr 16, 2018

Justice Anne S. Derrick found that Souvannarath’s lack of remorse was not an aggravating factor but a “significant indicator” of her present and future ability to pose danger to the public. Derrick also added that there was an “absence of evidence” regarding the appellant’s rehabilitative prospects.

Souvannarath argued that she received a far heavier sentence than co-conspirator Randall Shepherd, who encouraged the plan but didn’t want to be involved in the attack.

Shepherd has been sentenced to 10 years in prison.

The third conspirator, James Gamble, died by suicide as police were surrounding his residence.

Defence lawyer Peter Planetta was not available for comment.

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