QUEBEC — Lawyers for the Quebec City mosque gunman say their client is troubled his name is being associated with the mass killings at two New Zealand mosques Friday that claimed at least 49 lives.
Charles-Olivier Gosselin and Jean-Claude Gingras released a statement to the media today stating convicted killer Alexandre Bissonnette is not looking for his acts to be imitated or to serve as a model for others.
The lawyers were responding to unconfirmed reports the shooter in New Zealand was influenced by Bissonnette, who shot dead six worshippers in a Quebec City mosque in January 2017.
BREAKING: Through his lawyers, Quebec City mosque killer Alexandre Bissonnette has said he is 'deeply troubled' that his name is being linked to the New Zealand attack, and never wanted anyone to imitate him, or use his actions as a model. The statement is in French only. 1/3 pic.twitter.com/LnioXCR3TE— CBC News Alerts (@CBCAlerts) March 15, 2019
A now-deleted Twitter account that is believed to be linked to the accused New Zealand shooter shows what appear to be three assault-rifle magazines, one of which has Bissonnette's name on it.
Bissonnette was sentenced to life in prison without possibility of parole for 40 years, but both the Crown and his lawyers have recently announced they are appealing the sentence.
Quebec City mosque president Boufeldja Benabdallah said news of the Christchurch shooting brings "indescribable pain" to those who lost families in the 2017 shooting at his mosque.— CBC Montreal (@CBCMontreal) March 15, 2019
"We need to change. The world cannot continue like this," he said.
More: https://t.co/RfIh7d1riU pic.twitter.com/a41qoxQHCf
Gosselin and Gingras say Bissonnette profoundly regrets what he did and has been very affected by the shootings in New Zealand.