A Nova Scotia judge has granted a three-week delay for the sentencing hearing of Sub-Lt. Jeffrey Paul Delisle, the navy spy who pleaded guilty to selling military secrets to Russia.

Judge Pat Curran adjourned the matter until Jan. 31 because a medical issue prevented the federal prosecutor from attending court in Halifax on Thursday.

"The Crown couldn't fly down from Montreal. She just was unavailable, she simply couldn't get here," said Mike Taylor, Delisle's lawyer.

Delisle pleaded guilty in October to breach of trust and two counts of passing information to a foreign entity over a three-and-a-half year period between July 2007 and Jan. 13, 2011.

According to court documents, Delisle sold military secrets to the Russians for cash using USB keys and unsent emails to transmit the information from downtown Halifax to his home, then on to Russian agents.

Taylor has said his client was dealing with "deeply difficult personal issues" when he walked into the Russian Embassy in 2007, asked to meet a Russian intelligence officer and began his espionage career.

Court documents indicated Delisle claimed he incurred thousands of dollars worth of credit card debt because his marriage was falling apart.

Taylor told reporters Thursday his client was "as anxious as everyone else" to see an end to the court proceedings.

"He wants it done. Just wants to know what the rest of his immediate future is going to look like," he said.

Delisle was at the courthouse in Halifax on Thursday but did not appear in the courtroom.

Taylor said he had recently received a draft copy of an agreed statement of facts from the Crown and had not yet discussed the details with his client.

"From my perspective and the knowledge that I have of what's alleged to have been passed and what's admitted to have been passed, our troops in particular were never, ever put in any kind of danger," Taylor told reporters.

"There was never information about logistics and operations in the field and technical information, things like that given out that would harm our troops in any way."