*** I want all you Canada-hating Muslim zealots to take a real, hard look at the how the system treats you even when you wish for its destruction. "Repel harm with what is good". ***
BRAMPTON -- The Toronto 18 suspects at a detention centre west of Toronto have been treated better than other inmates at the facility, two correctional staff told court yesterday.
A correctional officer and supervisor from the Maplehurst detention centre in Milton testified at the sentencing hearing for Saad Gaya, who pleaded guilty in September to intending to cause an explosion for the benefit of a terrorist group.
Gaya, 22, was among 18 people arrested in June 2006 in a massive terror plot to wreak havoc on several targets, including Parliament and RCMP headquarters.
He is one of four of those people to plead guilty.
Gaya and Saad Khalid, who also pleaded guilty, were arrested while unloading bags labelled "ammonium nitrate" from a truck driven by an undercover police officer. But Gaya did not have knowledge of the magnitude of the explosive force of the purported ammonium nitrate, nor did he know the group's leaders intended for him to drive a van loaded with fertilizer bombs, according to an agreed statement of facts.
A non-communication order between the co-accused was lifted in June 2007, meaning they were no longer in segregation, and could mingle in a common area in the wing that housed only them.
Since that time they get several hours a day of free time in the common area, where they could watch television. Normally in the detention centre there are 32 inmates per TV, whereas in the Toronto 18 suspects' wing there were 10 people clamouring for one TV, and they got a remote while other inmates did not, said officer Don McCaffrey.
The terror inmates have also had laptops with them in their cells because of an order that they have 24-hour access to the evidence in their cases.
Special accommodations were also made for the men's Muslim faith, including visits usually twice a week with an imam, which is a privilege not afforded to other inmates, McCaffrey said.
Both men said they agreed with Crown attorney Croft Michaelson's assertion that the Toronto 18 inmates have been receiving better treatment than those elsewhere in the detention centre.
*** I take some issue with the highlighting of the "special privileges" given to them over others when it comes to Imam visits. Everyone is afforded chaplaincy services regardless.
Jailing people indefinitely in terror cases IS appropriate in some cases but not all. The fact is, some of them need help and we have to show we are trying to correct the problem not throw it away and bury it somewhere.
Because I can promise you, it will sprout again. ***