I would re-title this article ANOTHER SAD DAY FOR JUSTICE IN CANADA
We are asking you to raise your voice!
April 7, 2012
►It is shocking that France has not yet charged Hassan or decided whether to put him on trial, meaning Hassan may languish in pre-trial detention for years on mere suspicion while a 32-year-old investigation drags on.
►It is unacceptable that Minister Nicholson did not seek assurances that France will not use anonymous and unchallengeable intelligence ~ that may be the product of torture ~ as trial "evidence" against Hassan.
►Minister Nicholson should have sought assurances that Hassan would be allowed to effectively challenge the French handwriting reports, which were found by international experts to be deeply flawed.
►Minister Nicholson should have sought assurances that Hassan would be allowed to present exonerating evidence, such as the fact that his palm and finger prints do not match those of the suspect.
ED: Please read: FRENCH HANDWRITING EVIDENCE AGAINST DIAB FLAWED: EXPERT
►The standard of evidence for extradition from Canada is outrageously low and does not meet the standards for fair trial. The case against Hassan would be tossed out of court if he were tried in Canada.
►It is unacceptable that Canada’s extradition treaty with France is one-sided, in that France does not extradite its own citizens.
Short letters (approximately 100 words) have the best chance of getting published. Be sure to include your name, postal address, and daytime phone number, and write "letter to the editor" in your subject line.
Here is a partial list of newspapers:
Ottawa Citizen ... Toronto Star ... Montreal Gazette ... Vancouver Sun ... Globe & Mail
On April 4, 2012, Justice Minister Nicholson signed an order surrendering Hassan to France, despite recent information that Hassan is wanted in France for mere questioning and that no decision has been made about whether to try him or not.
This deeply disappointing decision highlights problems with the extradition process in Canada which has stripped Hassan of his rights as a citizen and deprived him of his liberty.
Mr. Donald Bayne, Hassan’s lawyer, pointed out that a Canadian citizen cannot be surrendered to a foreign country for mere questioning, where he may languish in jail for years in pre-trial detention. The foreign country must charge a person and decide to put him on trial before making an extradition request.
Mr. Bayne also pointed out that the case against Dr. Diab is anchored in unsourced and anonymous intelligence assertions that cannot be challenged in court. Human Rights Watch and other human rights organizations have criticized France for running unfair trials based on intelligence that may be the product of torture.
In making his surrender decision, Minister Nicholson stated that he is interpreting Canada’s Extradition Act in a “flexible manner”. He refused to seek assurances from France that intelligence would not be used as evidence against Hassan if he were put on trial, even though the Supreme Court of Canada, as well as the report from the Arar Inquiry, have highlighted the dangers of relying on intelligence as evidence and the risk that this could lead to wrongful conviction.
The Minister also refused to seek assurances that two discredited handwriting reports that relied on samples that were not written by Hassan would not be used at trial. He also refused to seek assurances that Hassan would be afforded the opportunity to challenge a third handwriting report that the extradition judge described as “very problematic”, “very confusing”, “very convoluted”, and with “suspect conclusions”.
The Minister’s decision sends the message that a Canadian can be forcibly shipped to a foreign country and allowed to languish for years in pre-trial detention based on mere suspicion, and that Canada will not even seek assurances that a fair trial be held.
Hassan Diab Support Committee