Tuesday, June 01, 2010

A Slam Dunk for Justis

14 down and two to go. Toronto's jihadi terrorists may be  getting their day in court but, in a series of guilty pleas, the justice of their cases remains firmly in the mind of their beholder. For, aside from reading the charges into the record, there has been precious little scrutiny of the evidence against them. That's the beauty of a guilty plea, it saves a lot of wear and tear on the presenter. It gives the distinct impression that, if nothing else, the evil 'perps' have seen some error in their ways.  That may be all right for the courts  but it leaves the sour taste that, if those jihadis were just a tad more 'on the ball', the outcome might have been somewhat different and those security forces now doing the high fives might have been wondering, 'What the F**k?', just like the rest of us.

The most recent to 'fess up' was one of the original characters.  He was convicted of importing illegal firearms. Fahim Ahmad made his appearance on the security radarscope  4 years ago when he, or one of the other two he was with, accidentally dropped some shooting irons they were transporting into Canada - right in front of the Border Service. Mind you, this was long before the days when Canada's Border Service was much more than a part-time-employment service for in-between-term university students.  But dropping pistols is 'up there' on attention-getting, even if you are on the look-out for American smokes or Japanese air conditioners.  Hard to believe but, after 4 years, Fahim is finally facing the music for something he can't deny doing. Maybe if authorities had acted faster, he wouldn't have had the chance to add the rest of the narrative - the stuff about northern Ontario training camps, target practice and the malarky about beheading all the tools in Ottawa. He's not, apparently, being convicted of trying to blow up the southern part of Toronto but he is tarred with that brush too.

Toronto Star writer Thomas Walcom explored the subject in a piece for his paper in June of 06, reproduced on the Prison Planet Bulletinboard ( His claims that the changes that have happened in the official 'story' since these birds were arrested, the one that has never been tested in court, leads him to belief that 15 of the 16 weren't terrorists by any stretch of the imagination. That story has changed over time - historical corrections no doubt.  But why plead guilty?

 That's the 64 thousand dollar question. To date the court sentence for those who were 'really guilty' (just one of them so far) was really stiff. So, either these guys have some really stupid lawyers being paid by the crown to slack it, or they're really guilty of the possibility that they might actually have been more intelligent and ruthless in practice than they were in reality. Or there's something in all of this that we don't know. My money's on the latter.

The Canadian legal system is the home of the deal. It seems such a natural way to attain justice. Cop a plea to something you're comfortable with and the court will cut you a break for 'being cooperative' - you wouldn't have been there if you weren't guilty of something anyway, eh? If you want to fight, they'll let you do that too, but at such a cost to yourself, that you'll be sorry you did,  unless you're a slimeball ex-cop who murdered somebody and is smart enough to know how to get a million and a half bucks worth of legal aid. Some people fare better in court than others, Fahim was not one of the better-farers, he was looking at life for a contested conviction. Being as since the others had all confessed ... well, who was going to believe he was an innocent ringleader.

The only 'innocent' was the cops' paid stooge who was on-board from the get-go, and he only got a paltry million and a half and a new life as a 'witness'.

So far there's not much to feel secure about. A bunch of cretins have pled guilty to mass stupidity. But it would have been worthwhile, after the massive investigation and all, to have had them duly convicted on the evidence and sent away for life.

Unless they didn't do it, eh?

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