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Judge orders stay of release of former Tamil Tiger

[MISC, Wednesday, 13 April 2011 08:16 No Comment]

(vancouver sun) A Federal Court judge has granted Canada’s immigration minister a stay of last month’s decision that a former member of the Tamil Tigers should be released from custody.

In a strongly worded decision released Tuesday to The Vancouver Sun, Federal Court Judge Sean Harrington called the migrant involved in the case "nothing but a bold-faced liar."

"It has been established beyond doubt that if he is not still a Tamil Tiger, he certainly was. He was in the armed naval wing of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Elam (LTTE) a terrorist organization."

Harrington said the man, identified only as B456, was "maddeningly vague" as to when his association with the Tamil Tigers ended.

He said the man’s "web of deceit" was finally cast aside during interviews with Canada Border Service Agency officers.

The man is one of 490 Sri Lankan Tamils who came to Canada in August 2010 on board the undocumented ship the Sun Sea.

He carried no identification papers but, like the others, filed a claim for refugee status.

The migrant was previously declared inadmissible to Canada by the Immigration and Refugee Board and has been ordered deported -he is one of only two men aboard the ship facing deportation.

Once a person has been deemed inadmissible, their refugee claim is effectively terminated.

But the man has demanded a preremoval risk assessment be done before he is deported.

A previous member of the IRB ordered the man to remain in custody last February because he was considered a flight risk while facing deportation.

But another IRB adjudicator, Daphne Shaw Dyck, decided last month that the man should be released from custody.

Judge Harrington found Shaw Dyck was "clearly wrong" and made a number of errors.

A stay of the release order has been granted until a judicial review can be held next month, the judge said.

Harrington also took issue with the man’s lawyer saying it should make no difference how one arrives in Canada. "I disagree," the judge wrote in his April 7 ruling.

"An undocumented ship such as the Sun Sea, which has violated a plethora of international and Canadian laws, faces a rebuttable presumption that she is engaged either in piracy or in the slave trade. The English admirals did not take kindly to such activities. Neither should we."

It isn’t the first time the immigration minister has claimed that Shaw Dyck erred in releasing a person considered a flight risk while facing deportation.

Three years ago, Shaw Dyck allowed an admitted killer, Jose Francisco Cardoza Quinteros from El Salvador, to be released to live with relatives in Surrey while awaiting deportation.

The immigration minister successfully applied in Federal Court for a stay of that release order.

Shaw Dyck found that she did not believe that Quinteros had killed at least four rival gangsters in gunfights and grenade attacks. Quinteros admitted to Canada Border Services Agency officers that he killed for the notorious Mara Salvatrucha gang.

The Sun Sea migrants have been a complex, time-consuming case for Canadian immigration and border services agency officials.

In the beginning, there were 443 adults in detention -380 men and 63 women.

All the women now have been released. As of last Friday, 33 men remain in custody facing admissibility hearings.

The hearings have heard that each migrant paid up to $30,000 to be smuggled into Canada and that crew members were allegedly involved in organized crime and money laundering.

[Full Coverage]

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