Soft on Refugee Crime, Hard on Thought Crime
By Tim Murray
Canada Free Press
Sunday, May 4, 2008
Imagine a household that permitted a stranger to walk in without an invitation, assault its occupants, raid the refrigerator, steal the silverware, and then spent years deliberating whether to show him the door.
Dont strain your imagination, just think of Canadas refugee system, a system made for anyone who wants to exhaust a deportation order with ease and usually does so at a staggering cost to us all. There are simply too many examples to enumerate. But if memory fails you, consult newspaper archives or Martin Collacotts 2006 study done for the Fraser Institute, Canadas Inadequate Response to Terrorism.
Just recently on Tuesday, April 29/2008, the Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB) ruled that a Salvadoran refugee claimant who killed four other gangsters in gunfights and grenade attacks is not dangerous enough to be jailed pending deportation. Surrey Mayor Diane Watts was stunned that adjudicator Daphne Shaw Dyck would permit Jose Quinteros to be set loose for the second time when he was deemed ineligible to stay in Canada.
Less recently a vicious, unrepentent Winnipeg gangster from Somalia, Hussein Jilaow, who spent 12 years in Canada involved with 30 criminal incidents like assault, robbery, knife work and threats against police and prison guards was spared deportation because his return flight to Mogadishu might prove dangerous.
In 1999 Judge Pierre Blais lifted the deportation order on a Salvadoran man who concealed a series of prostitution convictions to enter Canada and then was convicted of assault with a weapon once here. His medical status as an AIDS patient was his saving grace. That same year a convicted child molester, Walter Toledo, deported to Guatemala, was allowed to return because his lawyers successfully argued that his sexual attraction to children was under control.
1999 was also the year that Veluppillai Pushpanathan, convicted in 1988 of heroin trafficking in Canada and sentenced to 8 years in prison, had the audacity to apply for refugee status to remain in the country. The Supreme Court obliged by finding that a criminal conviction was not sufficient grounds to stop him from appearing before the IRB, and Immigration Minister Lucienne Robillard concurred.
Then there was Lai Changxing who amassed several billion dollars in China through smuggling operations. The IRB rejected his lawyers claim that China would execute him if he was returned after the Chinese government gave them assurances they wouldnt. But the IRB decision did not dismay Lais lawyers, who maintained that more opportunities to allow him to remain would present themselves. They were right—-years later and he was still in the country.
Rakesh Sarena, an Indian national whom Thailand has been trying to extradite from Canada since 1996 on charges of having embezzled $88 million from a Bangkok bank, has been able to block his extradition for 9 years despite trying to fake a passport and threatening witnesses. He may still be here.
In October 2001, 400 Toronto police officers arrested 50 Tamil gang members, and after two years, only two of them were repatriated. Refugee lawyers managed to tie everything up in appeals, so by 2003, 41 of the 50 were back on the streets. One of those still in Canada, Collacott reports, Santijesvaran Karhiravelu, who had been caught in Toronto with an AK-47 assault rifle and sawed off shot-gun that police believe were meant for murder, was a member of a Tamil gang responsible for killings, assaults, extortion and drug trafficking. Since his arrest in 2001, however, he married and fathered a son in Canada.The refugee board hearing his case in 2004, accordingly, set aside his deportation order on the basis that his removal would cause undue hardship to his family.
The case of Iranian Massoud Boroumand made an even greater mockery of the system. Upon arriving in 1985, Boroumand filed a refugee claim and then was ordered deported in 1993 after three heroin convictions including being part of an international drug trafficking ring. Subsequent refugee claims in 1994 and 1995 were rejected when it was determined that he faced no undue risk if he was returned to Iran. He then got married and did the standard disappearing act, and the authorities were not able to locate him for 7 years. By that time the IRB did an about face and decided that Iran was not so safe after all and this model citizen was permitted to stay when all was said and done, after years of pussy-footing.
The flaw in our system can be traced to Section 7 of the Charter, which grants fundamental justice to everyone rather than to Canadian citizens as stipulated in other sections of the document. Everyone means non-citizens and those who entered the country illegally. This terminological blunder allowed the Supreme Court to render the watershed Singh decision in 1985 which reversed 7 failed refugee claims, a decision that former Deputy Minister of Immigration John L. Manion declared destroyed any immigration control, and made Canada the laughing stock of the rest of the world and the destination of too many footloose criminals, terrorists and social parasites.
Then there are the criminals who enter through the more conventional door as aspiring immigrants. Violent Polish sex offender Jerry Bielecki was finally returned to Poland after four years in detention in Canada and more than 40 immigration hearings. Despite a long criminal record in B.C. for rape, unlawful confinement, fraud, drug offences and making threats, Bielecki avoided deportation for 8 years simply by refusing to sign travel documents. American violent sexual criminal Denver Todd Carnes is a veritable Houdini of deportations. Three times he has been apprehended, tried and deported. And now he is back for the fourth time. Bets on a fifth appearance in the land of the all-forgiving? Eventually Canadian authorities will judge the United States to be a threat to Mr. Carnes personal safety, and he will be allowed to stay here forever. Our personal safety is irrelevant.
What is most puzzling about this pattern of criminal indulgence toward foreign criminals by the federal government apparatus—the IRB, the Supreme Court, the Immigration Minister, the Charter of (Criminal) Rights and Freedoms—is the double standard.
Why is the federal government soft on refugee crime but hard on thought crime? Why is it excruciatingly, painstakingly and expensively difficult to remove a refugee criminal like Hussein Jilaow from this country but so relatively easy to expel Ernst Zundel? Jilaow never published offensive rubbish about the Holocaust but he did hurt people with knives and guns. And what exactly did Zundel do? He distributed words. Crazy, delusional words, painful to some but a different order of pain than a shiv being shoved into your kidney, surely. But not in Canada, you say. In Canada words can kill.
Thus the government of Canada is vigilant against people who would carry dangerous ideas across the border but not so vigilant, as we have seen, against dangerous people.You might be a convicted bank robber or rapist from Seattle, but what will scuttle your chance to cross the 49th is not your criminal record but the fact that you tried to smuggle the notion that climate change is unaffected by human activity in your briefcase.
It is time to restore sanity to the justice system. It is time to de-criminalize ideas and re-criminalize criminal deeds. No one ever got bludgeoned to death with a metaphor or murdered with a comma.
Posted 05/4 at 09:35 AM Email (Permalink)