The families of murder victims came before a committee of MPs on Thursday to condemn the Supreme Court of Canada’s controversial decision on sentencing laws.
In May, all nine judges on Canada’s top court overturned a 2011 Penal Code provision that would have allowed judges to apply a non-qualified parole period of 25 years to obtain parole. serve continuously for each murder, rather than concurrently.
Tim, husband of Sharlene Bosma, was killed in 2013. She told MPs on the judiciary committee that the provision of consecutive parole periods was one of the “few things that we as a person are doing” the victim must hold.”
“It tells us you can kill as many people as you want in Canada because the sentence won’t change,” Bosma told the committee.
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Tim Bosma’s killers have received multiple parole periods spanning 25 years after being found guilty of multiple murders. Sharlene Bosma said the sentence was given as a release because she believed it meant her daughter, who was two years old at the time of her father’s death, would never have to face his killers. .
“She has the right to be raised by him and to know him for a man as loving as he is,” she said, fighting back tears.
“Now, because of the May ruling, when my daughter turns 27, she will be asked to continue the fight I think I fought for her. The parole hearings will begin. .”
Mike and Dianne Ilesic, whose son Brian was shot dead along with two others in an ATM robbery in June 2012, told MPs that the Supreme Court’s decision should be overturned by the government. Terms are rarely used.
Dianne Ilesic told the committee: “I am bewildered and deeply disappointed by the Supreme Court’s decision and the government’s lack of response.
Their son’s killer was sentenced to life in prison with no chance of parole for 40 years, but applied for parole for 25 years following the Supreme Court’s decision.
Mike Ilesic said he is also worried about transferring the responsibility of attending pardon hearings to his remaining sons.
“They’re not willing to do that because they don’t have any faith in the way the current justice system is going,” he said.
Issues about the publication ban
The Judiciary Committee is conducting a study into the government’s obligations to victims of crime.
The committee also heard testimony from Morrell Andrews, a sexual assault victim who has campaigned for changes to Canada’s publishing ban rules.
Andrews told the committee that a publishing ban had been placed on her name without her consent and that she then had to fight to have it removed – a process she said was “humiliating”.
“They say this ban is in my best interest but I feel trapped,” she said, arguing that she should have been entitled to speak about her experience publicly.
Morell suggested that the law be amended to ensure more information is provided to victims about how a publishing ban works and to provide an opportunity for victims to waive the ban.
The committee then received a notice from Hamed Esmaeilion, president of the Association of Flight PS752 Families.
Esmaeilion called on Ottawa to add the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) to Canada’s list of terrorist organizations because of its role in the downing of the plane two years ago.
“This is an entity that shoots innocent people, so if you’re serious about justice and about this case… getting the IRGC on the list is one of the fundamental steps our government can take. done,” he said.
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