Skip to main content

Stop the Secrecy! Pack the Courts!

Apr/23/2012 - 9:00 am
Apr/25/2012 - 6:00 pm

Mohammad Mahjoub, a Torontonian, detained without charge for over 11 years, is going to court to seek to have proceedings against him quashed on April 23 - 25, and the proceedings are open to the public. Sign up for a morning or afternoon shift by clicking here: (Federal Court, 180 Queen Street, 6th floor, Toronto).

In the summer of 2011, government officials entered Mr. Mahjoub's lawyers' room in the Federal Court, seized boxes of documents, viewed and read the materials and then mixed them up (commingled) with their own government documents. This represents a serious breach of attorney-client privilege, an essential part of a fair trial.

This latest, entirely illegal and unprecedented access to confidential defense documents by government officials representing the Department of Justice, proves yet again that no legal, fair or just processes are being followed in security certificate detentions and hearings.

Earlier, CSIS officials admitted in court that, from about 1996 to 2006, CSIS and/or Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) listened to, recorded, analysed and used Mr. Mahjoub's conversations with his lawyers (as well as his family members and friends) against him. In December 2010, the court found that, despite an order to cease doing so, CSIS continued the practice of listening to his conversations with his lawyers for two more years.

Stop the Secrecy! Pack the Courts! End Security Certificates!
April 23 - 25, 9:30am - 5:00pm.
Federal Court, 180 Queen Street, 6th floor, Toronto

Mohammad Zeki Mahjoub was arrested under a "security certificate" in June 2000, over 11 years ago. He has spent the last 11 years without any charges being laid against him or having access to the "evidence" against him. For over 11 years, Mr. Mahjoub has remained either in jail or on draconian bail conditions without going through a trial or being found guilty. For 11 years, Mr. Mahjoub has lived with the threat of deportation to death or violence looming over his head without access to justice. So-called security certificates can only be used against non-citizens, who are given lesser rights to justice, simply on the basis of citizenship.

Currently, three men are being held under security certificates: Mohammad Mahjoub (since 2000), Mahmoud Jaballah (since 2001), and Mohamed Harkat (since 2002). In 2009, security certificates against Adil Charkaoui (arrested in 2003) and against Hassan Almrei (arrested in 2001) were thrown out; both are now suing the government.

* Only apply to immigrants, not citizens
* No charges are laid; only general allegations of potential danger, often based on profile and association
* Federal Court has ruled that presumption of innocence does not apply
* Evidence is not disclosed to the person arrested nor to his lawyer; it is examined in secret hearings from which the person and his lawyer are excluded
* Evidence thought to have been obtained under torture is supposed to be excluded; in practice, CSIS admitted in 2008 that all current cases would fall apart without recourse to evidence likely resulting from torture
* Standard of proof is "reasonable grounds to believe" - far lower than in criminal courts
* Any information is accepted as evidence; including hearsay, newspaper clippings, unsourced intelligence, etc.
* Until 2008, CSIS systematically destroyed evidence (all current cases predate 2008)
* In practice, people arrested under security certificates are subject to indefinite detention
* If upheld, a security certificate results in deportation, even if there is an acknowledged risk of death or torture

Please Like:
For more information:

To contact the Justice for Mahjoub Network:

Our Demands: 1) Immediately free Mahjoub, Harkat and Jaballah; 2. Apology, reparations and citizenship for all five security certificate detainees; and 3. Accountability for all officials responsible for their arbitrary, indefinite detention.