Dr. Hassan Diab must pay $2,000 per month for the cost of his own surveillance – a GPS device he is required to wear – or be imprisoned.
Join the Hassan for Hundred Campaign and make a statement of support for Dr. Hassan Diab by contributing $20 (or more) a month to cover the cost of his GPS monitoring. This is our way of taking a public stand and saying it is just wrong to make Hassan pay for his own surveillance.
How To Join
To make a contribution and join the Hundred for Hassan Diab Campaign, visit:
Click here to see current signatures on the statement.
Dr. Hassan Diab is a Canadian citizen and Ottawa professor who is falsely accused of a crime that took place in Paris in 1980. He has been ordered extradited by Justice Minister Rob Nicholson based on the flimsiest of evidence – evidence so weak that a Canadian judge declared that it would not stand in a fair trial. In a perverse twist, Canada has forced Dr. Diab to pay $2,000 per month for the cost of his own surveillance – a GPS device he is required to wear – or be imprisoned.
Until 2008, Hassan enjoyed a peaceful, productive life as a university professor. Suddenly, he was thrown in prison, after France expressed interest in him in connection with a bombing that took place in Paris in 1980. Even though the evidence is very flimsy and problematic, Canada initiated extradition proceedings. After four and a half months of detention, Hassan was finally released under very intrusive bail conditions, including a curfew, supervision when he leaves his home, and the obligation to wear an electronic/GPS tracking device around his ankle. Worse, he must pay for the device himself – $2,000 per month – or return to prison.
Why You Should Care
In the three and a half years since Dr. Diab’s arrest, France has been unable to produce any court-worthy evidence linking him to the crime. On the contrary, it was revealed during the extradition proceedings that the prosecutors had suppressed evidence showing that Hassan’s palm and finger prints do not match those of the suspect. The whole case rests on secret intelligence from unknown sources that is likely to have been the product of torture. The only so-called “evidence” linking Dr. Diab to the crime is a deeply flawed French handwriting analysis report claiming similarity between Hassan’s handwriting and five words on a hotel registration card. Internationally renowned handwriting experts have denounced this report as deeply flawed, biased, and unreliable. The Ontario Court judge presiding over Hassan’s extradition case found the report to be “convoluted”, “very confusing”, and “with conclusions that are suspect”.
The judge also declared that the case is “weak” and “the prospects of conviction in the context of a fair trial seem unlikely”, but he said that his interpretation of Canada’s extradition law left him no choice but to commit Hassan for extradition. If Hassan’s case were tried in Canada as a criminal case, it would be thrown out of court. However, Canada’s extradition law is very accommodating to foreign governments that target Canadian citizens, and human rights and due process are trampled upon in the name of extradition.
If this travesty of justice can happen to Dr. Diab, it can happen to any one of us.
Even though it has – astoundingly – emerged that France has not formally charged Dr. Diab, Justice Minister Rob Nicholson announced in April 2012 that he intends to hand over Hassan to France. There, Hassan will languish in prison, possibly for years, while the French authorities continue a 32-year old investigation of a crime that he did not commit.
Hassan is appealing the Ontario court decision and the Justice Minister’s decision. Meanwhile, Hassan and his family must continue to raise funds every month to pay $2,000 for his own surveillance. This is on top of the fact that Hassan has been unemployed since the unfair termination of his University contract in 2009.
Call for Support and Solidarity
To many of us, “debtors’ prison” sounds like an archaic institution, something out of a novel by Charles Dickens. But the idea of imprisoning people who can’t pay what they “owe” is alive and well in Hassan’s case. Hassan will be put in prison if he does not pay his “creditor” – in this case, the Canadian government – $2,000 per month for the cost of his own surveillance.
The Hassan Diab Support Committee invites you to be one of 100 people – A Hundred for Hassan – who care about due process and the presumption of innocence and oppose abusive extradition proceedings, by pledging $20 per month to share the cost of this enormous burden.
We are also inviting you to add your name to the following short statement.
“Canada has forced Dr. Hassan Diab to pay for his own surveillance since 2009. I support Hassan Diab’s right to be free from this burden, which I consider unjust and illegitimate. I believe that Dr. Diab’s case amply illustrates the unjust and abusive nature of the Canadian extradition process. I further believe that it is manifestly unjust to hand him over to a state which has not charged him, where he would face additional years of pre-trial detention, and in which he would be unlikely to receive a fair trial if he were eventually charged. I pledge a monthly contribution to ensure that the burden of this injustice does not fall on him and his family alone, but is shared by other members of the community who care about justice.”
Hassan Diab Support Committee