Douglas Hales' lawyer says his client will appeal his murder conviction in the death of Daleen Bosse.
Hales was found guilty of second-degree murder and sentenced to life in prison with no eligibility for parole for 15 years at Saskatoon Court of Queen's Bench Wednesday.
The 25-year-old Bosse of the Onion Lake Cree Nation was last seen in May 2004 at a Saskatoon nightclub.
Police used a controversial Mr. Big undercover sting operation to net a murder confession out of Hales in 2008.
This past summer, the Supreme Court of Canada overturned the murder conviction of a Newfoundland man who had also been the target of a Mr. Big operation.
The high court ruling came down after the Hales trial had wrapped up and a judge was deliberating on a verdict.
Hales' lawyer Bob Hrycan says the Supreme Court ruling calls into question much of what was presented as evidence at the trial and this is why an appeal of the conviction is more than warranted.
"That has never happened in my experience, where the playing field changes that dramatically," he says. "It's happened in this case and obviously it has effects in terms of the verdict."
Prosecutor Matt Miazga says the Crown is pleased with both the conviction and sentence and is not surprised by the defence’s wish to appeal.
"People have every right to appeal their verdict, I’m not surprised," he says. "Basically in a situation like this you have nothing to lose, you’re facing the most severe penalty for the most severe offence in the criminal code, that is murder and a life sentence."
Hales was also found guilty of committing an indignity to a body and sentenced to five years in prison to be served concurrently.
The Crown had been seeking a first-degree murder conviction but in making his ruling
Justice Gerald Albright said Hales had only confessed to one undercover officer, Mr. Big, that he had planned to kill Bosse.
To other undercover officers and Saskatoon police, he said the decision was made, more or less, in the heat of the moment.
Justice Albright said the conflicting statements raised reasonable doubts as to how premeditated the murder act was.
The Crown had also been seeking a sentence of life in prison with no eligibility for parole for 20 years.
On a second-degree murder conviction, the minimum time that must be served is 10 years before being eligible for parole.
Hales will be given six years credit for time already served on remand.
Friends and family of Daleen Bosse also read victim impact statements to the court.
They told of the emotional trauma, stress and depression that Bosse’s disappearance and murder has caused.
When given a chance to address the court, Hales told Bosse’s friends and family how sorry he is for the horrible things he has done and that he doesn’t deserve forgiveness.