The prosecution in the case of Raymond Ellis — the former Dawson student killed in a nightclub in 2005 in a case of mistaken identity — is recommending sentences of at least ten years for the two men convicted of manslaughter this month.
If the judge accepts the Crown's arguments, John Tshiamala, 28, and Evens Belleville, 25, will each serve about two more years behind bars — given that the time each man has already served counts as double.
However, defence lawyers for the two men argued they should be released immediately. The judge denied that request.
On Saturday, a jury found Tshiamala and Belleville each guilty of manslaughter.
The two men were part of a group of about 30 street-gang members who attacked Ellis in a bar.
They mistakenly thought that Ellis was a rival gang member because of the colour of his jacket.
The mob punched, kicked and stabbed Ellis repeatedly until he was dead.
Police initially arrested 24 people, but seven were ultimately charged.
Of the seven accused, one had the charges against him dropped, and another was acquitted.
Gregory Dardignac was a minor when he was convicted in youth court, but he was sentenced as an adult to life in prison.
Two men — Mclee Charles, 28, and Ernso Theobrun, 34 — pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of manslaughter
A long road for Ellis family
This is the second time Tshiamala and Belleville— the last two defendants in the case — were tried for the death of 25-year-old Ellis. In 2009, they were set free after a judge aborted the trial.
"Every time what he'd been through comes up, it breaks our heart," said Ellis’s father, Raphael.
At the sentencing hearing in Montreal on Tuesday, a lawyer for the Ellis family read a statement in the courtroom.
“We have a loving home and family which has not been the same since Raymond was killed. A part of us is missing, we are changed forever,” the statement said.
Sentencing in March
Tshiamala and Belleville are scheduled to appear back in court March 11, when the judge will likely hand down their sentences.
They could also face deportation once they’ve served their time.
Belleville is Haitian-born and is living in Canada as a permanent resident.
Tshiamala came to Canada as a refugee from the Democratic Republic of the Congo.