Crown prosecutors in Quebec are seeking leave to appeal at the Supreme Court the sentence handed down to Alexandre Bissonnette, the man who murdered six people during evening prayers at a mosque in the province’s capital in 2017.
“Out of respect for the ongoing legal process, no comments will be made on this matter,” the province’s Justice Ministry said in a statement Friday.
In February 2019, Bissonnette was sentenced to life in prison with no possibility of parole for 40 years. He pleaded guilty to six counts of first-degree murder and six of attempted murder in 2018.
Last November, Quebec’s appeal court ruled that Bissonnette will be eligible to apply for parole after serving 25 years.
The province’s appeal court declared that a provision of the Criminal Code that allows for life sentences to be served consecutively is unconstitutional. It agreed with Justice François Huot’s ruling that consecutive sentencing violated the charter, but decided the lower court judge erred in granting the killer a 40-year sentence and instead opted for 25 years.
Those who were killed at the mosque were Mamadou Tanou Barry, 42; Abdelkrim Hassane, 41; Khaled Belkacemi, 60; Aboubaker Thabti, 44; Azzeddine Soufiane, 57; and Ibrahima Barry, 39. In addition to the men killed, five others were struck by bullets.
— With files from The Canadian Press