THIS DAY AT LAW
Today in legal history...

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Canadian high court ruled indefinite terror detentions unconstitutional

On February 23, 2007, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that the government's use of security certificates to indefinitely detain and deport foreigners with suspected ties to terrorism violates the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Under the program, suspects often spent years fighting deportation while courts hear sensitive intelligence evidence against them, often in closed session without defense attorneys present. Although the court determined that the security certificates were unconstitutional and without effect, the effect of the judgment was delayed for one year in order to allow Parliament time to comply with the Court's ruling. The security certificates had existed since 1978 and had been used six times since 2001.


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Learn more about indefinite detention from the JURIST news archive, and read commentary on the ruling by Guest Columnist Kent Roach on JURIST Forum.




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