theprovince.com offers some tentative testimony from a recently convicted member of Canada’s Red Scorpions gang:

The accused was given an opportunity to address the court.

“I’d like to apologize to the court and especially to my mom about what’s going on,” he told the judge. “I’d like to explain a little bit about why the gun was found in my car . . .

Last year, I was shot and I almost died. My artery was completely gone in my leg. My friend was also shot by the way. In that situation, the police didn’t really do, like, anything. I was still out there and I felt I needed something to protect myself.”

Shirzad, who did not offer an explanation as to why he might be targetted [sic] for a shooting, insisted that at the time, ‘I was staying completely away from all types of trouble. I was working, I was trying to finish up my education.”

He added: “I see this as a learning curve. Hopefully, when my time is done, I’ll never have to come back to court again. I’ve pretty much learned my lesson.”

The judge said she agreed that Shirzad’s actions needed to be denounced and deterred and imposed a sentence of three years, reduced to two years, seven months and 26 days due to one-to-one credit for pre-sentence custody.

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