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Quebec Crown to seek adult sentence in case of alleged teen jihadist

02/16/2015 08:23 EST | Updated 04/18/2015 05:59 EDT
The Crown is asking for a Montreal teen to be sentenced as an adult if he is found guilty of terrorism-related charges.

The 15-year-old has already pleaded guilty to robbing a convenience store. He faces charges that the robbery was committed to obtain money to travel overseas to join a jihadist group.

The boy, who cannot be identified because of his age, was arrested in October after a West Island dépanneur was held up by an assailant with a knife.

The teen is accused of:

- Commission of an offence for a terrorist group.

- Leaving Canada to participate in activity of a terrorist group.

For an adult, the first charge normally carries a life sentence upon conviction.

However, as a teen, he would likely face a maximum of three years for that charge.

He pleaded guilty to armed robbery in November, but requested the sentencing be held off until the trial on the terrorism-related charges is complete.

The teen’s father turned him in to police after reportedly finding money inside his son’s bag.

Investigators soon discovered there was more to it, however. They called in the RCMP after suspecting the teen robbed the store to pay for a plane ticket — reportedly to join militants overseas.

About $2,200 was stolen from the dépanneur.

Teen tried to contact Martin Couture-Rouleau

Neither the organization he was planning to join nor the country he had planned to travel to was clear, but police said they found jihadist propaganda on his computer.

The teen allegedly told investigators he was living in sin because he is in Canada and not a Muslim country.

The RCMP would not divulge specific details because of the suspect’s age, but a spokesperson confirmed the boy tried to contact with Martin Couture-Rouleau — the man responsible for the attack on two Canadian soldiers in St-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Que., on Oct. 20. Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent was killed.

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