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Canada Dozens of lawyers call for suspension of extradition with France over Diab case

03:16  15 september  2021
03:16  15 september  2021 Source:   msn.com

Dozens of lawyers call for suspension of extradition with France over Diab case

  Dozens of lawyers call for suspension of extradition with France over Diab case OTTAWA — More than 100 legal professionals are asking Canada to suspend its extradition treaty with France over concerns "an innocent man" could face trial there in a terrorism case. In May, a French court upheld a decision directing Ottawa sociology professor Hassan Diab to stand trial in the decades-old bombing of a Paris synagogue. Born in Lebanon, Diab became a Canadian citizen in 1993, working in Ottawa as a university teacher. The RCMPIn May, a French court upheld a decision directing Ottawa sociology professor Hassan Diab to stand trial in the decades-old bombing of a Paris synagogue.

Diab 's lawyer said on Wednesday, January 27, 2020 that a France appeal court's call for his client to stand trial flies in the face of evidence. French authorities suspected Diab was involved in the 1980 bombing of a Paris synagogue that killed four people and injured dozens of others, an accusation he has always denied. Following drawn-out proceedings that went all the way to the Supreme Court of Canada, Diab was extradited to France where he spent three years behind bars, including time in solitary confinement.

Hassan Diab , an Ottawa academic who was extradited to France after allegations of involvement in the 1980 bombing of a Paris synagogue, listens as his lawyer Donald Bayne responds to the release of an external review on his extradition by the Justice Department, during a press conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa Friday. Robert Currie, a professor of law at Dalhousie University who studies extradition , said the mere fact that the law was followed in Diab 's case proves the law must change.

OTTAWA — More than 100 legal professionals are asking Canada to suspend its extradition treaty with France over concerns "an innocent man" could face trial there in a terrorism case.

Hassan Diab wearing glasses and looking at the camera © Provided by The Canadian Press

In a new letter to Justice Minister David Lametti, many prominent lawyers say there is no evidence to support sending Ottawa sociology professor Hassan Diab to France a second time in the long-running matter.

In May, a French court upheld a decision directing Diab to stand trial in the decades-old bombing of a Paris synagogue.

Born in Lebanon, Diab became a Canadian citizen in 1993, working in Ottawa as a university teacher.

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Diab was arrested by the RCMP in November 2008 and placed under strict bail conditions until he was extradited to France in 2014. Diab spent more than three years in prison in France before the case against him collapsed. Government promises release "shortly". Segal hasn't spoken about it publicly and has consistently directed media requests to the Department of Justice. But his report landed on Lametti's desk in the middle of a diplomatic standoff with China over the pending extradition of Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou to the United States.

France had appealed a January decision to release Diab and send him home to Ottawa. Three French magistrates in Paris were expected to rule on the appeal Friday. But instead of making a ruling, the judges said evidence supplied by Greek authorities had yet to be translated and turned over to parties This delay represents the newest twist in a case that has raised troubling questions about the standard of evidence required by Canadian law for extradition . Robert Maranger, the Ontario Superior Court judge who ordered Diab 's extradition in 2011, wrote in his decision that France had presented

The RCMP arrested him in November 2008 in response to a request by France. French authorities suspected Diab was involved in the 1980 blast that killed four people and injured dozens of others, an accusation he has always denied.

After lengthy proceedings that went all the way to the Supreme Court of Canada, Diab was extradited to France, where he spent three years behind bars, including time in solitary confinement.

In January 2018, French judges dismissed the allegations against him for lack of evidence and ordered his immediate release.

The ruling allowed Diab, now 67, to return to his wife and young children in Ottawa while subsequent court proceedings in Paris played out.


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In late January, France ordered Diab to stand trial for a decades-old synagogue bombing, a move his lawyer called the latest misstep in a long odyssey of injustice. The Canadian government has been communicating with officials in France about the case and will continue to do so, Trudeau said during a news briefing Wednesday. The group, which represents dozens of civil-society voices, also wants the prime minister to commit to not extraditing Diab to France a second time. It also says Canada must reform its extradition laws to ensure no one else is forced to go through what Diab has endured.

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Diab's supporters have long argued he was in Beirut — not Paris — when the attack took place and that his fingerprints, palm prints, physical description and age did not match those of the suspect identified in 1980.

Diab's lawyer, Donald Bayne, has said the latest analysis of handwriting evidence in the case makes the argument for pursuing his client even weaker.

There has been no public indication of a next step in the case since the May ruling in Paris.

The letter from dozens of lawyers and other legal professionals, made public Tuesday, calls on the Liberal government to urge France to put an immediate end to the "continuing miscarriage of justice."

"Thousands of Canadians have come to know the Ottawa professor as an innocent man, whose life has been massively damaged and whose rights and freedoms have been violated by France’s relentless persecution."

Addressed to Lametti, the letter is copied to several other cabinet members and federal party leaders.

Among the signatories are lawyers Barbara Jackman, Paul Champ, Dennis Edney and Paul Copeland as well as law professors Rob Currie, Sharry Aiken and Don Stuart.

They seek assurances that Canada will not bow to a second request for Diab’s extradition.

In addition, the letter advocates suspending the extradition treaty with France, calling it "inherently defective."

"France has proven to be an untrustworthy extradition partner."

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 14, 2021.

Jim Bronskill, The Canadian Press

Elxn-FedElxn-Prominents .
The Canadian Press list by parties of elected and defeated prominent candidates. Federal All Ridings (338 members) Liberal Party of Canada Churence Rogers, longtime municipal politician, elected in Bonavista-Burin-Trinity. Scott Simms, former national weather forecaster, defeated in Coast of Bays-Central-Notre Dame by Clifford Small (CON). Yvonne Jones, member of NunatuKavut community council, an unrecognized Inuit territory in Labrador, elected in Labrador. Gudie Hutchings, former tourism/outfitting entrepreneur, elected in Long Range Mountains.

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This is interesting!