WINNIPEG — He terrorized Christmas shoppers and was one of Winnipeg’s most feared thieves and on April 24 Michael Syrnyk will be released from prison.
The man dubbed the Yuletide Bandit has served the required two-thirds of his 21.5 year sentence.
He pulled off nine armoured car heists, 11 armed bank robberies and eight break-ins around Winnipeg from 1994 until he was captured and sentenced in 2002.
WATCH: Archived footage shows Global News coverage of Yule Tide Bandit crime spree
In one incident in 2000, he was responsible for a brazen daylight shooting in Polo Park during the busy Christmas shopping season.
Two years later Syrnyk was finally arrested after he took a woman hostage. During that incident one police officer was shot and another injured. No one was killed in any of his crimes.
The now 47-year-old applied for day parole, but was denied on Wednesday.
Documents obtained by Global News show he was denied because he presents “an undue risk to society if released on day parole.”
However, the Parole Board of Canada cannot stop his statutory release, which will be on April 24.
“Statutory release means it’s a release in law, at this point it is not within the board’s authority to deny the release, the board may only impose special conditions,” said Gary Sears, with the Parole Board of Canada.
On top of supervision, Syrnyk will not be allowed to consume alcohol or drugs, report all intimate relationships and friendships with females and attend psychological counselling.
“If they breach those conditions, the Correctional Service of Canada may return the offender to a custodial state and the case may be referred to the Parole Board of Canada,” said Sears.
If that happens Syrnyk’s early release would be revoked and he could be returned to jail.
Global News has reached out to the Correctional Service of Canada to find out what level of supervision Syrnyk will be subjected to. The department was unable to comment on the specific case citing privacy concerns.