October 16, 2013 - 8:15 AM
EDMONTON, Alta. - The Opposition Wildrose party says the Alberta government should do everything it can to bring a convicted sex offender back to Canada to face charges he removed his electronic monitoring bracelet.
Wildrose justice critic Shane Saskiw says it is "morally reprehensible" that Justice Minister Jonathan Denis is not pursuing the extradition of Michael Stanley.
Edmonton police believe Stanley fled to the U.S. after cutting off his locator device earlier this month in Lloydminster on the Alberta-Saskatchewan boundary.
U.S. officials have told the Associated Press that Stanley was allowed across the border into Washington state because he is an American citizen and wasn't wanted on any charges in the U.S.
Over the weekend, Alberta Justice announced it would not seek Stanley's extradition back to Canada because the breach of recognizance, mischief and driving charges he faces north of the border don't involve violence.
But Saskiw says the risk of Stanley reoffending is more than enough justification to seek his return.
"This is an individual who has been terrorizing vulnerable Albertans for decades who is now on the loose and Alberta Justice is saying they're not going to do anything about it," Saskiw said in a news release.
"I implore Minister Denis to do everything in his power to bring this guy back to Alberta."
At least one extradition expert has sided with leaving Stanley in the U.S.
Gary Botting of Coquitlam, B.C., said last week the extradition process would cost hundreds of thousands of dollars and Stanley would face little, if any, jail time if he were convicted of the charges he is currently wanted on in Canada.
Stanley's criminal record in Canada dates back to 1987.
The 48-year-old last received a 32-month prison term for assault and forcible confinement involving two mentally challenged boys. Parole Board records say he lured the boys into a washroom, blew crack smoke in their faces and then sexually assaulted them.
Parole records also detail the sexual assault of an elderly woman and charges he exposed himself to kids.
The board determined that Stanley posed a risk to reoffend and kept him behind bars until his warrant expiry date, the final day of his sentence, in 2011.
He was being monitored by police under a peace bond with conditions, including one ordering him to stay away from children.
The U.S. Marshal's office said last week that it wasn't tracking Stanley and didn't know where he was.
Alberta Justice acknowledged Stanley's violent record, but said the charges he is currently facing "do not typically warrant engaging the extradition process."
"If Michael Stanley returns to Canada, we are prepared to prosecute him and to ensure that he continues to be subject to an order to protect the public," the department said.
News from © The Canadian Press, 2013