Sentencing hearing set to begin for Toronto’s van attacker

Survivors and families of victims in Toronto’s deadly van attack are set to give statements in court today as a sentencing hearing in the case gets underway.

Eight women and two men died on April 23, 2018 when a 25-year-old man bent on infamy, angered by women who wouldn’t sleep with him and radicalized in the bowels of the internet deliberately drove a rented van down a busy sidewalk .

Another woman died more than three years later from injuries suffered that day.

The sentencing hearing for Alek Minassian could last multiple days as it will hear from several dozen people affected by the attack.

He was found guilty last year of 10 counts of first-degree murder and 16 counts of attempted murder.

First-degree murder carries an automatic life sentence without the ability to apply for parole for 25 years.

Several victims and families say they are preparing for an emotional few days in court but are going in feeling strong.

It will be their first opportunity to face the killer in person after the judge-alone trial and verdict occurred over videoconference during the pandemic.

Betty Forsyth, Ji Hun Kim, So He Chung, Geraldine Brady, Chul Min Kang, Anne Marie D’Amico, Munir Najjar, Dorothy Sewell, Andrea Bradden and Beutis Renuka Amarasingha and Amaresh Tesfamariam died as a result of the attack.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 13, 2022.

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