09/02/2016 09:14 EDT | Updated 09/03/2017 01:12 EDT

Sentencing arguments begin for Saskatchewan lovers who plotted to murder spouses

PRINCE ALBERT, Sask. — Sentencing arguments have begun for two lovers who were convicted of plotting to kill their spouses in Saskatchewan.

A jury found Curtis Vey and Angela Nicholson guilty in June of conspiracy to commit murder.

The Crown had argued that the pair planned to kill Vey's wife, Brigitte, in a house fire, and Nicholson's husband, Jim Taylor, by drugging him and making him disappear.

The trial in Prince Albert heard that Brigitte Vey hid an iPod under a kitchen table and secretly recorded her husband and Nicholson hatching the plan in July 2013.

Brigitte Vey's victim impact statement says it still scares her to think she was sleeping next to someone who was planning such things.

Vey and Nicholson's lawyers told court their clients weren't serious about killing their spouses.

The Criminal Code of Canada says that anyone who conspires to commit murder faces a maximum term of life in prison.

In the scratchy kitchen-table recording played during the trial, Angela Nicholson was heard chatting with Curtis Vey about her birthday. She mentioned flowers that he gave her for Valentine's Day, her pending divorce and his work on the farm.

Then the lengthy conversation shifted to their spouses.

"It could be a number of days before anybody's suspicious he's gone,'' Vey was heard saying. "Is there going to be really anybody who really is worried about him?''

Nicholson and her husband had been married for 30 years at the time, but were separated. She was heard in the recording talking about getting into his house.

"If I go in there, if I turn over, say, the coffee table, and I open the cupboards, and I'd go upstairs and I'd pull dresser drawers out and make it look like they're rummaging through for something — that's going to make them suspicious, is it not?'' 

"Just make sure you got gloves on,'' Vey whispered.

A few minutes later, Vey wondered about a fire at his house.

"The bottom line is that's how, you know, it's set up to be an accident, right?'' he said. "Do you know what I mean? Like, the house burns down.''

Under cross-examination, Brigitte Vey acknowledged that her husband had never hurt her and she had never been concerned for her safety.

Court also heard a conversation Angela Nicholson had with an undercover police officer, who was in a cell with her after she was arrested. Nicholson told him she researched how to set a grease fire, but was "too chicken'' to do it.

Nicholson told her cellmate that her marriage to Taylor crumbled because of his alleged alcoholism, addiction to cocaine and a gambling habit that lost the couple $100,000. She said Taylor was emotionally abusive and prevented her from finishing their divorce proceedings, which started in 2009.

Nicholson admitted in court that she and Vey talked about doing something to their spouses, but added they would never act on it.

"You know what, when the time came closer, that's probably all it would have been, just talk. You say things out of anger, but nothing that you intend to do,'' she said.

"I can't even kill a frickin' mouse.''