Canada B.C. Appeal Court says Canada must rethink extradition of Indigenous man
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VANCOUVER — British Columbia's Appeal Court has ordered the extradition of a man to the United States to be reconsidered, saying the original decision failed to factor in Canada's historical mistreatment of Indigenous families.
Glenn Sheck, a member of the Bonaparte Indian Band in B.C., is accused of money laundering in the United States and then-federal justice minister Jody Wilson-Raybould, who is Indigenous, ordered the extradition.
In a two-to-one decision, the court ruled the minister failed to consider the highly relevant factors of the separation of the Indigenous man from his four children to face a much more severe sentence in the United States.
REAL SCOOP: Court orders minister to review Sheck's extradition
The B.C. Court of Appeal has ruled that former Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould should have paid more attention to Glenn Sheck’s indigenous heritage before ordering him to be sent to the U.S. to face money laundering charges. The court sent Sheck’s case back to the new justice minister for reconsideration. Last year, Wilson-Raybould ordered that Sheck, charged with laundering millions in drug proceeds in the U.S., to be surrendered to the Americans for trial. Sheck then asked B.C.’s highest court to review that decision in light of his heritage and the impact on his four children of any potential U.S. sentence.
Writing for the majority, Justice Susan Griffin says Canada's legacy of separating Indigenous parents from their children, and its need to reconcile the history, are relevant factors in considering the best interests of Sheck's children.
Griffin says had the minister considered those factors, she may have concluded it would be unjust to extradite a man to face a likely sentence of 27 years in prison when a sentence in Canada would be in the range of two to four years.
No one from the Department of Justice was immediately available to comment on the court decision.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 26, 2019.
The Canadian Press
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