Adele Sorella, the mother of Laval found guilty of murdering her two daughters, violated the confidence they had given him to ensure their safety, said Friday the Crown Attorney, recommending for her a minimum sentence of 14 years of jail.
On March 5, a jury found the 53-year-old woman guilty of two counts of second degree murder in relation to the deaths of her daughters, nine-year-old Amanda and eight-year-old Sabrina. The girls were found dead in the family home in Laval on March 31, 2009.
A conviction for second degree murder automatically results in life imprisonment with no possibility of parole for at least 10 years. The Crown on Friday recommended that Sorella serve a minimum sentence of 14 years in prison, while the defense suggested to the court the minimum of 10 years.
But no one made victim impact statements on behalf of the girls, “said Nancy Roy, director of the Association of Families of Assassinated and Missing Persons. For M me Roy, girls are victims, forgotten, indifference of parents in this case. “Nobody was there to represent them,” she lamented Friday, on the sidelines of the trial.
Attorney Simon Lapierre told the judge that the protection of young children is one of the overriding values of society and that any breach of this obligation must be denounced with the utmost firmness. According to Mr. Lapierre, by murdering his daughters, Adele Sorella severely broke the bond of trust.
Mr. Lapierre also pointed out the absence of a statement of the victims at the time of the sentence, but he added that this did not mean that the death of the girls had not done much to the pain of his family. He said that although no one has come to testify the consequences of the crimes, it is clear that they have had a devastating effect on loved ones.
He added that the father of the girls, Giuseppe de Vito, a gangster found dead in prison in 2013, had expressed his sadness for their death and his regret for not having helped them. The grandparents, uncles and a girl teacher all testified at the trial of the shock and sorrow caused by the girls’ deaths.
A difficult childhood
But M me Roy added that the presence of family members and loved ones at the sentencing hearing could affect the court. She recalled that the victims had a difficult life, with a mother with a mental illness and a criminal father. M me Roy believes that the accused should accept its responsibility in this regard.
When the time came for the defense to present its arguments, one of Adele Sorella’s lawyers noted her client’s mental fragility and the fact that she poses no risk to society. Pierre Poupart cited a number of previous court decisions that suggest, in his opinion, that an exemplary sentence is useless when mental illness is a factor.
At her trial, Adele Sorella said she had few memories of the day her daughters were found dead. Medical experts who testified for the defense said that she had experienced an episode of dissociation on the day of the murders.
The girls’ bodies showed no sign of violence and the cause of death was never established. A pathologist testified that a hyperbaric chamber used in the residence to treat Sabrina’s juvenile arthritis was a possible cause of death by asphyxiation.
Sorella refused to speak in court Friday because she was feeling too emotional, but she could submit a written statement. Judge Sophie Bourque, of the Superior Court, must sentence on June 26.
Adele Sorella’s lawyers have already appealed the verdict of guilty, which they describe as unreasonable and unsupported by the evidence presented at trial.