Ottawa Citizen

Tuesday 23 February 1999

Woman pleads guilty to trying to hire contract killer

WINNIPEG (CP) - A 26-year-old woman pleaded guilty Monday to charges that she tried to hire a contract killer from Montreal to blow up her estranged husband and his family over a child custody dispute.

Danielle Shah will be sentenced Tuesday for counselling to commit murder. Court heard a tape of the conversation between Shah and an undercover police officer posing as a contract killer. On it, Shah said she was concerned about the timing of the death, suggesting a month down the road as a better time.

The officer said he understood Shah wanted to use dynamite, and she responded it might be a good idea to deliver the bomb to the house of her estranged husband and take out his mother and brother, too.

"The good thing about his mother and brother being there is they wonít know who itís aimed at," Shah said.

Defence lawyer Miranda Harder argued Shah never used words like "kill him" or makes it explicit that she wanted her husband dead. She said the undercover police officer used those phrases.

Crown attorney Mike Mahon said Shah was angry because she didnít want her husband to visit their toddler son and he had called the police on her.

(Winnipeg Free Press)

© The Canadian Press, 1999