Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Extradition of Canadian shows need for reform

Letter to the Editor
Vancouver Sun, April 11, 2012

Justice Minister Rob Nicholson's decision to surrender Hassan Diab for extradition is terrible news for Canadians who care about justice.

Because France has not decided whether to put him on trial, he may languish in pre-trial detention for years on mere suspicion while the ongoing 32-year-old investigation continues.

Given recent revelations from the Harper government, it comes as no surprise that Minister Nicholson did not seek assurances that French authorities will not use anonymous and unchallengeable intelligence produced under torture as "evidence" against Diab. Nevertheless, Minister Nicholson should have sought assurances that Diab would be allowed to challenge the French handwriting reports, which were found by international experts to be deeply flawed.

The extradition judge's statement last year that the case against Hassan would be tossed out of a Canadian court demonstrates conclusively that our extradition laws are urgently in need of reform.

Sid Shniad, Surrey

See the letter at: