Skip to comments.Canadian terror cell backgrounder (ctv background)
Posted on 06/03/2006 1:22:45 PM PDT by xcamel
Links to global terror surface in Canada
Lorraine Passchier, CTVNEWS.com
The ranks of al-Qaeda's mujahideen seem far away from the urban streets of Toronto, Montreal, or Vancouver. But a dragnet unleashed in the days following the attacks on the New York World Trade Center and the Pentagon is uncovering remnants of al-Qaeda's holy war here at home.
A number of high-profile cases have been in the news in recent weeks as investigators zero in on their targets and court proceedings begin to unfold. Some of the suspects have been charged with immigration offences and face allegations that they pose a threat to national security.
Still, the terrorist probe has a double edge and activists say the civil liberties of an unknown number of men of Middle Eastern descent being held as suspects are being placed at risk. Critics claim investigations are often conducted after the fact while suspects are held in solitary confinement.
In the jittery days following the September 11 attacks, Mohamed Attiah was questioned by federal agents and ordered to leave his job at Atomic Energy of Canada after he was labelled a security risk. Since that time, CSIS and the RCMP have declared him harmless and his former employer offered him a job, which he accepted.
But other probes have given investigators a glimpse inside al-Qaeda and other terrorist organizations. In December, Ahmad Sa'id Khadr, a former Ontario resident, appeared on a list of nine al-Qaeda members most wanted by the United States. Here, then, is a look at some of the cases that have made headlines in recent months.
Samir Ait Mohamed
Former Algerian Samir Ait Mohamed sits silently in jail Canadian authorities detained Samir Ait Mohamed as he tried to cross the border into the United States on July 28, 2001. He was taken into custody after convicted terrorist Ahmed Ressam testified against him three weeks earlier. Both men originate from Algeria and according to Ressam they were once good friends.
Ressam told authorities that Mohamed was given to discussions of armed jihads and said he had plans to bomb a Jewish neighbourhood in Canada. When Mohamed was first detained, authorities cast a cloak of secrecy around his detainment.
A United States requested his extradition after a federal grand jury indicted him in late October. The indictment charges him with two counts of conspiring to commit international terrorism and he could receive life in prison if convicted. An extradition warrant was served in mid-November.
Mohamed's next court appearance is scheduled for January in Vancouver where he is seeking refugee status. Documents unsealed in New York said he agreed to help Ressam acquire guns and hand grenades. A pistol was recovered by RCMP in Ressam's Montreal apartment following his arrest in December 1999.
An FBI affidavit said Ressam was to use the weapons "in connection with his planned terrorist operation and jihad work." The documents said Mohamed introduced Ressam to Mokhtar Haouari, who was convicted by a U.S. federal court over the summer for the role he played in the millennium plot.
Mohamed's refugee claim was turned down in 1998 and he turned to the Federal Court of Canada which ordered a new hearing. Immigration and Refugee Board officials are refusing to discuss any details and all documents in his case have been sealed in accordance with privacy laws.
Ali Adham Amhaz
RCMP arrested Ali Adham Amhaz on a U.S. warrant charging him with conspiracy to provide material to Lebanon's Hezbollah at his Burnaby home last October. A Supreme Court judge raised eyebrows when she released Amhaz on $50,000 bail less than a week later. Justice Marvyn Koenigsberg told a packed courtroom that her decision was based on "truly anxious consideration."
Amhaz was indicted in North Carolina last March. American authorities alleged Amhaz and three others worked together "to provide currency, financial services, training, false documentation and identification, communications equipment, explosives and other physical assets to Hezbollah, in order to facilitate its violent attacks."
In December, extradition proceedings against him were put on hold after the United States withdrew the warrant for his arrest. The father of four surrendered all of his travel documents and denied any connection to terrorist activity at the time the charges were brought forward. He also remained in his Burnaby home until the court said he could move due to unwanted media attention.
"I'm like everybody else in this country. I'm trying to raise a family, being proud of who I am, being proud to be a Canadian," Amhaz said after the court dropped his stringent bail conditions. But while he resumes his life, Amhaz isn't totally in the clear since the United States has reserved the right to proceed with the extradition at a later date.
His lawyer, David St. Pierre, said his client's life had been irrevocably changed as a result of the allegations. Amhaz, who has been a Canadian citizen for ten years, went back to court in an attempt to have materials seized by police returned. He said the items included his child's computer and family photos.
A Toronto man has been declared a threat to national security and a judge has ordered his deportment after he refused to testify at a court hearing on November 19. Hassan Almrei, 27, was taken into custody in Mississauga in late October. He was granted refugee status after he came to Canada from Jordan.
The Syrian is said to be devotee of Osama bin Laden and he once operated a honey business in Saudi Arabia which has been used by al-Qaeda to transfer illicit goods. Intelligence sources believe Almrei is linked to Nabil al-Marabh and may have been involved in an international forgery ring that produced false documents.
Al- Marabh is being detained at the New York Metropolitan Corrections Center in connection with the September 11 terror attacks. Almrei has said his only contact with al-Marabh was social and he was not aware of his background.
Earlier, Almrei's legal representatives claimed they had been denied access to their client. Lawyer Barbara Jackman told the court she had been blocked from seeing Almrei on more than one occasion. A judge adjourned his immigration trial in mid-November for about a week.
A biology teacher is being held at a Toronto detention centre due to alleged terrorist ties to al-Zawahiri and bin Laden. Mahmoud Jaballah, a co-founder of a private Muslim school in Toronto, is awaiting a hearing to decide whether or not he can remain in Canada. The 39-year-old father was arrested on August 14 and is represented by high-profile lawyer Rocco Galati.
Jaballah came to Canada on a false Saudi passport in May 1996. He was granted refugee status after he claimed he had worked in Pakistan for the International Islamic Relief Organization. A federal court judge quashed a national security certificate issued against Jaballah that accused him of having al-Jihad links in 1999, after he had spent a year in detention.
Mohamed Zeki Mahjoub
Federal prosecutors allege in court documents that Mohamed Zeki Mahjoub is being detained as a security threat because has terrorist ties to a group headed by an al-Qaeda lieutenant. The Toronto man's lawyer is fighting a deportation order on the grounds his client will likely be executed if he is returned to his native Egypt, where he was convicted in absentia of terrorist activities.
In court documents, Mahjoub describes working for Osama bin Laden in Sudan where he managed a large farm owned by the Saudi-born dissident. But he denies knowing about bin Laden's role in al-Qaeda or his terrorist activities. Egyptian authorities believe Mahjoub is a member the Vanguards of Conquest, a radical faction of al-Jihad, which is intimately linked to al-Zawahiri.
Ahmad Sa'id al-Khadr
Oct. 10, 2001
FBI names Ahmad Sa'id al-Khadr as a suspect
When Mohamed Zeki Mahjoub first arrived in Toronto he stayed with the in-laws of Ahmad Sa'id Khadr. Both men originate from Egypt and have tangled with Canadian federal authorities. Khadr was identified as a know associate of Osama bin Laden in a United Nations list issued last year, which indicates he was born in Cairo on January 3, 1948.
Khadr uses at least seven aliases including al-Kanadi, Arabic for "The Canadian." Federal court documents say he was arrested in Pakistan in connection with the 1995 car bombing of the Egyptian embassy there. Last October, he was one of 39 individuals and groups to have their assests frozen by the U.S. Treasury due to suspected links to terrorism.
While some of his relatives remain in Toronto, Khadr is believed to be living in Afghanistan. In late December, he appeared on a list of nine al-Qaeda members most wanted by the United States in their campaign against terror. The list was distributed to U.S. Special Forces and anti-Taliban forces in Afghanistan.
Mouhamedou Ould Slahi
An electrical engineer made his first appearance in Canada when he arrived in Montreal in 1999 from Germany. Mouhamedou Ould Slahi met with convicted terrorist Ahmed Ressam during his stay and slipped out of the country after the would-be millennium bomber was arrested. The Mauritanian was questioned in Senegal as the Ressam case unfolded.
Slahi is a brother-in-law of a high-ranking member of al-Qaeda who goes by a series of names including The Mauritanian, Abu Hafs, Muhammad Hassan, and Abu Zubaydah. Convicted terrorist Ahmed Ressam testified in a New York court that Zubaydah sponsored his training in Afghanistan and asked for fake passport in return. Interest in Slahi was renewed following the September 11 attacks.
Amid Farid Rizk
An extraordinary discovery was made when Italian authorities found Amid Farid Rizk inside a shipping container in late October. The 43-year-old was well prepared for what was intended to be a three week voyage from Egypt to Toronto. Equipped with a satellite phone, a cellphone, a laptop computer, and reference documents he was taken into custody during a stopover in Italy.
The Egyptian-born Canadian citizen had equipped the container with a heater and an ample water supply. Rizk spent part of his 10-day voyage surfing the Internet and sending email. Police said he is a suspected member of al-Qaeda and he was the first person to be arrested in Italy under a new international anti-terrorism law.
His lawyers told an Italian court that he was fleeing religious discrimination and legal headaches in his native Egypt during a November hearing. While the court ordered his release from prison, prosecutor Roberto Di Palma said he would continue investigating the case despite the ruling.
"This man is hiding something. Someone who is escaping from Egypt in a container is certainly trying to hide something," Di Palma said hours after the decision. Defence lawyers said Rizk intended to fly to Montreal from Rome and pointed out the container held many household items including a dishwasher.
Like in the US, it takes a conservative in Canada to go after terrorists.
Ping to this one! You'll want to put this in your extensive files ...
The ranks of al-Qaeda's mujahideen seem far away from the urban streets of Toronto, Montreal, or Vancouver.
Only the blind wouldn't see the massive influx of muslim immigrants taking over these cities. Especially Toronto more neighborhoods look like Karachi, than a canadian city these days.
His lawyers told an Italian court that he was fleeing religious discrimination and legal headaches in his native Egypt during a November hearing. While the court ordered his release from prison,
That judge should be put on trial for terrorism.
Thanks- I've found only one other lead so far.
Please FReepmail me to get on or off this ping list.
Ahmad Sa'id al-Khadr = Ahmad Saad Khadir = Khadir Ahmad Saad
Great advice but add the mullahs at their mosques.
Another sign that Indians understand the menace of Islamofascist terrorism. Canadians of Indian heritage seem to integrate and assimilate quite well, and (from what I see) are generally a model community.
Good for the caller. Which station was it, by the by? CFRB 1010?
Nothing to see here. Move along. Move along.
The liberals don't restrain when it comes to directing hate speech at other nationals. For example, those who resented John Howard's visit referred to Australians as "the worst kind of criminals". The "Globe and Mail" allowed such posts. So much for the liberal media. I'll bet if the person with the Indian accent was rebuked for his remarks, he would quickly claim that the rebuke was racially motivated. The liberals with their political correctness have created a monster. There is one standard for a liberal and another standard for everybody else. When it comes to lack of self-awareness, liberals take the cake.
I note that at the moment the liberals seem obsessed with the gay marriage issue (going on the G & M posts). I am starting to wonder if there is such a thing as a "straight" liberal. Sorry about the pun.