August 8, 2014 / 8:09 PM / 5 years ago

Canadian man pleads guilty to murdering three police officers

OTTAWA (Reuters) - A Canadian man pleaded guilty on Friday to shooting dead three police officers in the eastern city of Moncton in June in an attack that caused widespread shock, local officials said.

The incident was one of the worst of its kind in Canada, where gun laws are stricter than in the United States and deadly attacks on police are rare.

Jeffrey Bourque, 24, pleaded guilty to three counts of murder and two counts of attempted murder, said Lori-Jean Wallace, a spokeswoman for the justice ministry in the East Coast province of New Brunswick.

The plea means Bourque will not face trial, she said.

Bourque was arrested on June 6 after a huge manhunt in Moncton, a city of about 70,000 people. The three police officers were shot dead on the evening of June 4.

The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation cited judge David Smith as telling Bourque he could be facing consecutive life sentences with no chance of parole for 75 years.

CBC said Bourque would next appear in court on Oct. 27 for a pre-sentencing hearing.

Reporting by David Ljunggren; Editing by James Dalgleish

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