Surrey six killers to get life sentence with no parole, Crown confirms

VANCOUVER — When killers Cody Haevischer and Matthew Johnston are sentenced next month for six counts of first-degree murder, there’s only one possible outcome: life behind bars with no parole eligibility for 25 years.

A new Canadian law that allows a judge to hand down consecutive life sentences for multiple murders does not apply in the case of the Surrey Six killers, Crown spokesman Neil MacKenzie confirmed Thursday.

“The changes with respect to longer parole ineligibility were enacted after these offences, so they are not applicable in this case,” MacKenzie said.

A sentencing hearing for Haevischer and Johnston, members of the Red Scorpion gang when they participated in the execution of six men on Oct. 19, 2007, will be held Dec. 12.

Both lost their bid this week to have the charges against them stayed despite allegations of police misconduct during the Surrey Six investigation.

B.C. Supreme Court Justice Catherine Wedge said society’s interest in seeing the killers held to account for their crimes outweighed concerns over the alleged misconduct.

Haevischer and Johnston were convicted of plotting to kill rival drug trafficker Corey Lal, then killing not only Lal, but his brother Michael, associates Eddie Narong and Ryan Bartolomeo, and bystanders Ed Schellenberg and Chris Mohan.

Other multiple killers whose crimes occurred after the law changed in December 2011 have been sentenced to much longer terms.

Last month, Justin Bourque was sentenced to life in prison with no chance of parole for 75 years for killing three RCMP officers and wounding two others in Moncton, NB, last June.

It is the longest sentence in Canadian history and the harshest since the death penalty was abolished in 1976.

And in September 2013, Travis Baumgartner was sentenced to life without parole eligibility for a minimum of 40 years after pleading guilty to killing three of his coworkers at an Edmonton armoured-car company a year earlier.

kbolan@vancouversun.com

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