A Quebecer, sentenced for the largest theft of maple syrup ever committed in the country, will have to pay a fine of more than 9 million Canadian dollars (6.5 million euros) for this theft of the century.

The case, which dates back to 2012, has just been decided by the Supreme Court of Canada.

Richard Vallières and fifteen other people stole 5,000 tons of syrup 10 years ago from a warehouse 150 km from Montreal.

A loot estimated at around 18 million Canadian dollars.

The resale had brought in 10 million Canadian dollars for the group.

Ten years to pay the fine

Convicted of fraud, trafficking and theft, the Quebecer was sentenced in 2016 to eight years in prison and a fine of more than 9 million Canadian dollars.

This had been reduced on appeal to one million dollars, an amount corresponding to his personal profits.

But the Supreme Court of Canada unanimously reversed the judgment of the Court of Appeal on Thursday.

She estimated that Richard Vallières, who is still behind bars, should pay “a fine equal to the value of the property that was in his possession or under his control, that is to say 10 million dollars”.

"Crime does not pay," said Supreme Court Chief Justice Richard Wagner.

The Quebecer has a period of ten years to pay this fine, under penalty of risking an additional six years in prison.

Produced from raw maple sap, the golden and very sweet liquid, popular especially in North America, is made mainly in Quebec.

But there are also major producers in neighboring provinces, including New Brunswick.

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