Trudeau government has been unwilling to deal with issue of former Canadian #ISIS militants and their families.
There exists a policy solution.
In 2018, TRUDEAU disclosed 180 individuals "with a nexus to Canada" had joined ISIS and other groups. He acknowledged 60 had returned to Canada.
TRUDEAU referred to these persons by the head-swivelling label, "foreign travellers".
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told a Hamilton town hall Wednesday that despite concerns over returning ISIS fighters, Canadians were safe in their country and could rely on the security and intelli...https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/hamilton-trudeau-town-hall-1.4481025
Commenting on 'Jihadi Jack', Canadian Jack Letts, then Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale said Ottawa had "no obligation to facilitate his travel from his present circumstances, and we have no intention of facilitating that travel."
Jack Letts has every right as a Canadian citizen to come to Canada, legal analysts say, but the man dubbed "Jihadi Jack" by the media and accused of being an ISIS fighter may not have an easy time...https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/jihadi-jack-canada-isis-passport-1.5254861
International pressure to take responsibility and repatriate Canadian citizens has been building and relenting. And with it, an increasing sentiment among Canadians that in their return they do not somehow manage to escape justice and enter society with impunity.
WE MUST PROSECUTE - in Canadian courts - those "foreign fighters" who are Canadian nationals and who were «ENGAGED IN HOSTILITIES» against Canadian Forces, and those who supported them.
DON'T MISS «Upper Case» emphasis. As an element, it is of critical importance here.
As a signatory to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC) and Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide,Canada has both legal and moral responsibilities to uphold these international legal conventions when formulating any policy
response that deals with returning foreign fighters.
Canada, in particular, among Western countries has exhibited a reluctance to prosecute Canadian nationals who joined ISIS and subsequently returned home.
The Trudeau government finds itself on the horns of a dilemma.
Nothing that follows should be read as meant to take any investigative approach or pathway to prosecution 'off the table' (i.e. Crimes Against Humanity and War Crimes Act, listed terrorist and other criminal offences).
INSTEAD, it identifies an existing, readily accessible
tool of Canadian law that has the capability to (definitively) address this deep conundrum.
☞ High Treason, Section 46(1) Criminal Code
in conjunction with Conspiracy, Section 465(1)(c)
in other words, 'Conspiracy to Commit High Treason' as a component of an overall
* TO MY KNOWLEDGE, there's been no (serious) consideration given to approaching these cases as conspiracies to commit high treason.
Before explaining 'What is a Conspiracy', I want to squarely address one obstacle that is commonly held up as an
impediment to successful prosecution.
Risking understatement and admittedly, war zones seldom lend themselves to the collection and preservation of evidence. Suffice it to say, crime scene-related evidence does not fare well in theatres of conflict.
BUT, That only
becomes an hindrance if pursuing a substantive offence (i.e. a particular war crime, listed terrorist offence) - or for that matter, High Treason itself. 'Conspiracy to Commit High Treason' is entirely different and resilient approach. Due to its very nature,it has a lack
of susceptibility to the impediments, obstacles and hindrances that might normally otherwise become obstructers of an investigation.
Suffice it to say, conspiracy investigations have a unique resilience and do not necessarily become enmeshed in the same pitfalls as
other evidence obtained extrajudicially and extraterritorially - even if from a set of circumstances that involves a battlefield.
Before proceeding, a word concerning my background in relation to this subject.
In 1997, I served as the Lead Canadian Investigator for the first case of its kind in Canada - “The Iraqi Helicopter Case” https://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/fl-xpm-1998-11-17-9811170008-story.html
- an international conspiracy to illegally export surplus Canadian military helicopters to Saddam Hussein’s regime, I utilized an approach that included the offence of conspiracy.
WHAT IS CONSPIRACY?
Criminal conspiracy exists when two or more people ("co-conspirators") agree to commit almost any unlawful act, then take some action toward its completion. It requires:
The Element of "Intent"
The "Overt Act "Requirement
THE "AGREEMENT" REQUIREMENT
Formalities (i.e. written contracts) of agreement are not needed to establish agreement. An agreement may be ascertained from the circumstances - 'the conspirators hold a meeting to plan the crime.'
THE ELEMENT OF "INTENT"
As with all crimes involving specific intent, the intention of a person is a key element. Association with those involved in a crime, or mere knowledge of a crime, is not sufficient of itself. The conspirator must agree to participate in the crime.
THE "OVERT ACT" REQUIREMENT
Once agreement has been entered into, it only takes one conspirator to take some concrete step in furtherance of the plan. A drunken conversation in a bar without any sort of actual action done in follow up would not satisfy this requirement.
A competent investigation conducted in tandem with a pathway for prosecution would address each of these requirements AND any specific elements particular to the offence.
In the case of a 'Conspiracy to Commit High Treason',the accused former ISIS fighter ("conspirator")
would have had to engaged in or supported hostilities against Canadian Forces.
The accused ISIS fighter would be liable to the same punishment as that to which an accused who is guilty of that [substantive] offence would, on conviction
be liable. In other words, a conviction of 'Conspiracy to Commit High Treason' carries the SAME penalty as a conviction for High Treason - imprisonment for life, s. 47(1) CC.
UNLIKE attempts and accessories after the fact where the accused is liable to imprisonment for
term that is only ONE-HALF of the longest term, conspirators face the SAME PUNISHMENT as that of the substantive offence.
FORMAT NOTE - THREAD TO BE CONTINUED
Due to the length of this Thread, it has been necessary to sub-divide it into TWO (2) VOLUMES: "A" and "B".
Each volume contains separately numbered parts (i.e. A23/24, B21/22)