Friday, April 13, 2007

Storm Track Appeasement: Terrorism Suspect and Bin Laden Associate Freed in Canada

We’re lucky that the Canadian courts are so humane when making decisions that affect North America. As in the US, the need to place civil rights over innocent civilian’s survival has led to legal maneuverings that freed a terrorist under the government supervision and …. his family.

A Canadian court decided on Thursday that an Egyptian man who worked for al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden should be released even though the court concluded he had perjured himself and had probably engaged in terrorism. Federal Court Justice Richard Mosley ruled that the suspect, Mohamed Zeki Mahjoub, still posed a danger to Canadian society but that this threat could be neutralized by the imposition of what he said would amount to house arrest.

Mahjoub has been held without trial since 2000 on a security certificate -- which allows the indefinite detention of suspects if they are deemed a security threat -- and has engaged in years of legal battles with the government over attempts to deport him.

So what was the government so worried about?

Mahjoub admits to having worked for bin Laden in Sudan in the 1990s but denies any terrorist activities. Mosley adopted previous findings of the court that there was an objectively reasonable suspicion that Mahjoub:

- had been a high-ranking member of what the court called the Islamic terrorist organization Vanguards of Conquest

- "had engaged in terrorism"

- had significant contacts with "persons associated with international Islamic terrorism," including bin Laden and a man accused of helping bomb the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998.

On three prior occasions, the Federal Court had found that Mahjoub posed a danger to national security, and it found that he had lied under oath about his associations. Mosley said this therefore raised doubt about Mahjoub's assurances "with respect to his eschewal of violence and of the Islamic extremist cause."

Now he’s free. But Justice Mosley felt that "I am satisfied that while Mr. Mahjoub's lies are troubling they are not of such a fundamental nature that they should weigh as a significant factor in determining that he would be a future danger if released from detention on strict terms and conditions."

Let’s hope for Canadian citizen’s sake that his satisfaction and trusting in Mr. Mahjoub's lies doesn’t get people on both sides of the border killed. Ever hear of Sudden Jihad Syndrome, Justice Mosley?

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