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Manitoba reservist didn’t ‘intend to promote terrorism’: defence lawyers

This undated photo provided by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police shows Patrik Mathews. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Royal Canadian Mounted Police. MG

Defence lawyers for a former Canadian Armed Forces reservist from Manitoba say he should be sentenced to 33 months and argue he never intended to promote terrorism in the United States.

Patrik Mathews, who is 28, pleaded guilty earlier to this year to four charges, including illegally transporting a firearm and obstruction of justice.

Click to play video: 'The case against accused Canadian extremist Patrik Mathews' The case against accused Canadian extremist Patrik Mathews
The case against accused Canadian extremist Patrik Mathews – Feb 9, 2020

Mathews and two American co-accused were arrested last year by the FBI.

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Lawyers representing Mathews submitted this week documents to Maryland District Court saying that while many people may find Mathews’ beliefs repugnant, he never intended or made a plan to commit violence.

Read more: Ex-Manitoba reservist should get 25 years in prison, U.S. prosecutors say

Prosecutors are seeking what’s called a “terrorism enhancement” that would significantly increase his prison term and have recommended he serve 25 years behind bars.

They argue Mathews was working alongside a white-supremacist group called The Base to start a civil war by killing on a large scale.

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