06/11/2014 08:00 EDT | Updated 08/11/2014 05:59 EDT

Child 'M' father sentenced to 15 years in prison

An Alberta father convicted in the starvation and abuse of his young twin daughters was sentenced to 15 years in prison by an Edmonton Court of Queen's Bench justice. 

The 36-year-old pleaded guilty to manslaughter, aggravated assault and failure to provide the necessaries of life. Justice Sheila Greckol gave him three years credit for time already served in custody. 

One of his children, known as "M,” was taken off life support in September 2012 in a case that went to the Supreme Court of Canada.

Her twin sister “S” survived, but was found to have delayed motor skills. She is now a ward of the province.

Last week, Crown prosecutor Shelley Bykewich asked for an 18- to 20-year sentence, saying the father “chose to do nothing” to protect his daughters.

However, defence lawyer Peter Royal called the recommendation “excessive,” and suggested his client be sentenced to 10 to 12 years, to be reduced by three years once pretrial custody is taken into account.

The children’s mother faces a number of charges, including second-degree murder. No date has been set for her trial.

The man and woman cannot be named under Alberta law because the surviving twin girl, as well as another child, a boy, are wards of the province.