Canadian detained in UAE pleads not guilty to terror-related charges

A Canadian man detained for more than a year in the United Arab Emirates has pleaded not guilty to three terror-related charges on the first day of his long-awaited trial.

See Full Article

Salim Alaradi's lawyer says his client learned Monday he was charged with funding terrorist organizations, supporting terrorist organizations, and co-operating with terrorist organizations.

Paul Champ says two specific groups -- the February 17 Brigades and the Libyan Dawn -- were named.

Alaradi's family and lawyers had previously received no explanation from U.A.E. authorities for his continued detention and there have been allegations he has been tortured behind bars.

Champ says neither he nor Alaradi's nephew were allowed to attend Monday's hearing at the State Security Chamber of the U.A.E. Federal Supreme Court.

But the Champ says Canada's ambassador was able to observe, as were two U.S. diplomats, since Alaradi is being tried with two Americans.

The case has been adjourned to Feb. 15, Champ said in an email.

"Despite our serious concerns with the fairness of this trial, and obviously the allegations of torture, we remain optimistic that Mr. Alaradi will be acquitted of all charges and allowed to leave the country," he told The Canadian Press.

Few details about the case were provided but "the family finds the allegations very hard to understand as Mr. Alaradi has not lived in Libya in over 25 years and is not politically involved in his former country," he said.

"As well, these groups no longer exist and in any event were internationally recognized as allies against Gadhafi and were never viewed as terrorist organizations by the (United Nations) or any country."

Alaradi's family is grateful that the Canadian ambassador personally attended the hearing, Champ said.

"I think it sent a very strong message to UAE authorities that Canada takes torture very seriously," he said.

Alaradi, a 46-year-old Canadian of Libyan origin, was running a business in Dubai when he was abruptly arrested in August 2014.

He was born in Libya and immigrated to Canada from the U.A.E. in 1998, settling down in Vancouver with his family. He decided to return to the U.A.E. in 2007 to run a home appliance business with his brother.

He and his family were on vacation when he was arrested.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Canada Post is scaling back its letters-from-Santa program for kids who write from school

    Canada News CBC News
    Canada Post says Santa won't be sending as many personalized letters to kids this year, though he still wants to make sure he responds to every note he receives. The postal agency says many children write letters to Santa both from home and from school, which gave Santa and his elves a total of 1.6 million notes to reply to last year. Source
  • Hydro hip-hop: listen to two tunes about Ontario hydro bills

    Canada News CTV News
    The Wack MCs have the “Hydro Blues.” “Look at this bill -- am I reading it right?” they rap in a new music video. “If I feed my kids, I gotta shut off my lights?” Source
  • 12 dead in hotel fire in Georgia's Black Sea resort

    World News CTV News
    TBILISI, Georgia -- The Georgian Interior Ministry says 12 people have died in a fire in a hotel in the Black Sea resort city of Batumi. Russia's TASS news agency is quoting the ministry as saying the fire engulfed the Leogrand hotel late Friday evening. Source
  • Canadian charged in Yahoo hacking case to plead guilty in U.S., court records say

    Canada News CBC News
    A Canadian accused by the United States of helping Russian intelligence agents break into email accounts as part of a massive 2014 breach of Yahoo accounts is expected to plead guilty next week, according to court records. Source
  • Notley wins over Calgary business crowd, starting with 'eastern bastards' remark

    Canada News CBC News
    Two years after struggling through a speech in front of an awkwardly silent business crowd, Rachel Notley stood before the Calgary Chamber again on Friday and opened with a joke. "I spent the earlier part of the week out in Ontario — you know, the home of those eastern bastards," the Alberta premier said. Source
  • Starting with 'eastern bastards' remark, Notley wins over Calgary business crowd

    Canada News CBC News
    Two years after struggling through a speech in front of an awkwardly silent business crowd, Rachel Notley stood before the Calgary Chamber again on Friday and opened with a joke. "I spent the earlier part of the week out in Ontario — you know, the home of those eastern bastards," the Alberta premier said. Source
  • Jewish group, residents of Ontario town urge new name for 'Swastika Trail'

    Canada News CTV News
    A major Jewish advocacy group in Canada has stepped up efforts to help some residents of an Ontario town convince local politicians to rename a street currently called Swastika Trail. B'nai Brith Canada started an online petition Thursday calling on Puslinch Township, about 75 kilometres west of Toronto, to change the street name. Source
  • Fraud trial of the 'Muslim Madoff' adjourned after accused fires lawyer: Crown

    Canada News CBC News
    The trial of a Toronto businessman charged with fraud for allegedly pocketing millions in "Shariah-compliant" mortgages has been delayed until next fall — just as it was beginning. The opening day of the trial for Omar Kalair, dubbed the "Muslim Madoff" by some of the homeowners who were allegedly left thousands in the hole after buying into the mortgages marketed to Muslims, got underway earlier this month. Source
  • False killer whale is latest cetacean to die at Vancouver Aquarium

    Canada News CTV News
    VANCOUVER -- The Vancouver Aquarium says the false killer whale it rescued off a beach over three years ago has died at the facility. The aquarium says in a statement that Chester's behaviour changed Wednesday and despite intensive veterinary care, he died this morning. Source
  • 'Chester' is 4th cetacean dead at Vancouver Aquarium this year

    Canada News CTV News
    VANCOUVER -- A false killer whale has died at the Vancouver Aquarium, becoming the fourth cetacean to die at the facility in the past year. The aquarium said in a statement that Chester's behaviour changed Wednesday and despite intensive veterinary care, he died on Friday morning. Source