Jan 19 2012
OTTAWA — The Supreme Court of Canada has turned down a bid by three Arab-Muslim men to overturn a decision that allows the federal government to shield some national security information from use in a $180 million civil suit.
Vancouver Sun (H/T Susan K) Abdullah Almalki, an engineering graduate at Ottawa’s Carleton University; Ahmed El-Maati, a Toronto truck driver and Toronto educator Muayyed Nureddin contend the actions of federal officials contributed to their torture in overseas prisons.
The trio were allegedly tortured in Syria and Egypt between 2001 and 2004, when they were under investigation in Canada for alleged terrorist ties. Almalki, a father of six, claims Canadian officials contributed to his ordeal by sending false, inflammatory information about him to foreign security services.
Among the documents protected is a top-secret communication between CSIS and the RCMP that had been accidentally sent to Almalki’s legal team.
The redactions had previously been ordered removed by Federal Court Judge Richard Mosely, who ruled that “public interest in holding government accountable for the alleged actions and omissions of its servants is an important issue in this case.” Two federal inquiries have established that the RCMP also sent questions for Almalki directly to the Syrians while he was in custody, even though warned about the possibility of torture.
In its statement of defence, the federal government has denied any wrongdoing and has blamed any mistreatment on the Syrians. The three men are seeking $60 million each; their families are seeking millions more in damages.
(Gee, these three don’t look like any torture victims to me. What did they make them do – skip a meal?)