SCOC to hear appeals from both sides in Harkat terrorism case
Mohamed Harkat is shown as he leaves Canada Border Services Agency after receiving his deportation papers in Ottawa Friday Jan. 21, 2011. (Fred Chartrand / THE CANADIAN PRESS)
Published Thursday, November 22, 2012 10:21AM EST
OTTAWA - The Supreme Court of Canada will hear appeals from both parties in the terrorism case of Algerian refugee Mohamed Harkat.
Harkat, 44, was arrested almost 10 years ago in Ottawa on suspicion of being an al-Qaida sleeper agent, but he denies any involvement in terrorist activities.
The federal government wants to deport Harkat under a national security certificate, a rarely used tool for removing non-citizens suspected of being terrorists or spies.
In April, the Federal Court of Appeal upheld the constitutionality of the security certificate system, but ruled that summaries of some mid-1990s conversations be excluded from evidence against Harkat because the Canadian Security Intelligence Service destroyed the original recordings.
The ruling left both sides unhappy and each asked for a hearing in the Supreme Court -- an uncommon turn of events.
As usual, the high court gave no reasons for its decision to hear the appeals.