Omar Khadr. Image Credit: The Canadian Press

Lawyers seek easing of bail rules for Omar Khadr

Former detainee wants unrestricted internet access and more freedom to move around Canada

Lawyers for former Guantanamo Bay detainee Omar Khadr are to appear in an Edmonton court on Thursday seeking to ease his bail restrictions and grant him unsupervised visits with his sister.

Khadr is also seeking unrestricted internet access and more freedom to move around Canada while on bail pending the appeal of his conviction by a U.S. military commission for five purported war crimes.

The now 31year-old has been free on bail for more than two years and notes no issues have arisen since his release.

Right now, he can only have contact with his sister Zaynab Khadr if one of his lawyers or bail supervisor is present.

Khadr is arguing he wants to reconnect with his family and is old enough that he can’t be negatively swayed.

Several years ago, Zaynab and her mother infuriated many Canadians by expressing support for the al-Qaida terrorist group.

In 2005, Zaynab was investigated by RCMP for allegedly aiding al-Qaida, but no charges were filed. She is now reportedly living in Sudan with her fourth husband, but is planning a visit to Canada.

Thursday’s hearing is the next phase in a 15-year legal journey for Khadr that has ignited sharp and divisive debate among Canadians over terrorism, human rights and the rule of law.

The Toronto-born Khadr spent years in U.S. detention at Guantanamo Bay after he was caught, as a teenager, and accused of tossing a grenade that killed army medic Christopher Speer during a firefight at an al-Qaida compound in Afghanistan in 2002.

In 2010, Khadr pleaded guilty to multiple charges before a U.S. military commission, including to killing Speer, but has since said he can’t remember if he tossed the fatal grenade. He has said he entered the plea to try to get out of Guantanamo, where he says he was mistreated, and into the Canadian justice system.

He returned to Canada in 2012 to serve out the rest of the eight-year sentence he was given.

Canada’s Supreme Court ruled in 2010 that Khadr’s charter rights were violated at Guantanamo and Canadian officials contributed to that violation.

Khadr filed a $20-million lawsuit against the government and last month it was revealed he had settled the case for a reported $10.5 million. That set off a fierce debate.

He has said he wants to get on with his life. He recently married and plans to move to the city of Red Deer, halfway between Edmonton and Calgary, to begin studies to become a nurse.

Dean Bennett , The Canadian Press

Just Posted

Police respond to two break-ins

One break-in on Friday may involve missing firearms from the residence

City looking for utility rate committee members

City hall seeking people with residential, agricultural, industrial and commercial backgrounds

Outbreak at Okanagan hospital

Gastrointestinal illness reported at Vernon Jubilee Hospital

21 days for smashing window, stealing phone

The man was arrested and sentenced the same day of the crime at Penticton’s 7-Eleven

Break and enter in Oliver

Tools and clothing taken from Growers Supply Co in Oliver

Video: Strutting their stuff in underwear fashion show fundraiser

Penticton event was a fundraiser to support Discovery House

Horgan says pot smokers may face same outdoor rules as cigarette smokers

B.C. is developing its rules on recreational marijuana

Dedicated volunteers look for clues

Police appreciate work of those who provide extra eyes for missing women investigations.

Truck driver volunteers to take dog lost in B.C. back home to Alberta

Frankie, a pit bull service dog, was found wandering in the Lower Mainland

B.C. teacher suspended after explicit images projected to class

Jeffrey Rohin Muthanna had been viewing porn on a school laptop for two years

Man who pledged to give B.C. hockey team millions charged with fraud

Mike Gould has since repaid $8,000 he allegedly owed Cranbrook restaurant, owner says

RCMP look to reunite owner with stolen tools

Kelowna police seek to identify the owner of tablet and tools seized by RCMP

Were your hockey cards stolen?

The Kelowna RCMP are looking to reunite a hockey fan with their cards

Strong economy fuels housing sales in B.C.: report

Economist says demand for houses is being supported by a large number of millennials entering the market

Most Read