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Via terror plot suspect says Criminal Code 'not a holy book'

Discussion in 'The Americas' started by Anees, Apr 25, 2013.

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  1. Anees

    Anees Lt. Colonel ELITE MEMBER

    Jan 14, 2012
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    Via terror plot suspect says Criminal Code 'not a holy book'

    One of two men accused of an al-Qaeda-directed plot to derail a Via Rail passenger train appeared to question the authority of a Toronto court on Wednesday, saying that the Criminal Code should not apply to him because it's "not a holy book."

    Chiheb Esseghaier, 30, of Montreal, asked to address the court and was warned to be careful with what he said because it could be used in future appearances.

    "All of those conclusions was taken out based on Criminal Code and all of us we know that this Criminal Code is not a holy book," Esseghaier said. "It's just written by a set of creations and the creations they're not perfect because only the Creator is perfect.

    "We cannot rely on the conclusions taken out from these judgments."

    The judge thanked him for his comment but told him to "save that for another court."

    Esseghaier, who the Tunisian Embassy in Ottawa confirmed Wednesday is from that North African country, was represented by duty counsel but said he did not want a lawyer and would like to represent himself.

    He was charged with five offences including conspiracy to commit murder for the benefit of a terrorist group, conspiracy to interfere with transportation facilities for the benefit of a terrorist group, and participation in a terrorist group.

    The judge ordered Esseghaier remanded into custody until his next appearance on May 23, the same day his co-accused, 35-year-old Raed Jaser, is scheduled to be back in court.

    Esseghaier was also told not to communicate with Jaser.

    Watched for almost a year

    CBC News has learned that RCMP had been following Esseghaier since May 2012. At that time, two undercover surveillance officers watched him on an Air Canada flight to Cancun, where he was to attend a biomedical conference.

    Esseghaier's behaviour on the plane was "bizarre," and he had an altercation with a female flight attendant after he went to the washroom, sources say.

    As well, sources told CBC News that the arrests of Esseghaier and Jaser were made because the behaviour of one of the suspects had become increasingly unpredictable, although which one isn't known.

    CBC News has also learned that a member of al-Qaeda living in Iran, on the border with Afghanistan, was guiding and motivating the alleged suspects.

    Via terror plot suspect says Criminal Code 'not a holy book' - Canada - CBC News
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