The body of 9-year-old Amber Lucius was found in her mom Laura Coward's SUV, which had been set on fire with the girl inside of it in August 2014.
Court of Queen's Bench in Calgary, Canada heard how Amber's dad, Duane Lucius, had been given full custody of her three days before her death, CBC reported.
In an emotional statement read outside the court, Mr. Lucius said his daughter had been used as a “bargaining chip” by his ex-wife, in order to get back at him.
Holding back tears, he said,
Justice Scott Brooker jailed 50-year-old Coward for life, with no chance of parole for 18 years. He described the killing as random, senseless and the ultimate betrayal.
Amber was visiting her mom on Labor Day weekend in 2014, three days after her parents' divorce was finalized. The divorce granted her dad full custody.
Coward told friends she was going to take Amber stargazing, but instead fed her with a toxic dose of sleeping pills she had stolen from a friend.
She then drove to a rural road and set her SUV on fire... with Amber inside.
Coward plead guilty to second-degree murder last month.
During her sentencing hearing, she begged Duane Lucius and her family for forgiveness.