Enderby ISIS supporter moved to another B.C. town | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Enderby ISIS supporter moved to another B.C. town

Enderby City Hall
January 21, 2021 - 7:30 AM

An alleged ISIS supporter who moved to Enderby in the summer of 2019 after having been acquitted of several terrorism-related charges has moved to a different B.C. community, iNFOnews.ca has learned.

The Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada confirmed Othman Ayed Hamdan had the terms of his immigration detention amended in November 2020, and he was now living in another community in B.C.

The Immigration and Refugee Board said Hamdan no longer has a curfew and is now living with a new bondsperson.

In Immigration cases, a bondsperson deposits money with the Canada Border Services Agency as a guarantee the released individual will adhere to the terms and conditions of their release. If they fail to do so they may not get their money back.

The Immigration Board said Hamdan is required to check in with the Canada Border Services Agency by phone and now is allowed some “very limited internet access” only under the direct supervision of his bondsperson.

READ MORE: 'Send him packing', say Enderby residents only slightly concerned by new ISIS supporting neighbour

Hamdan caused a stir in the small community when a Federal Court Justice ordered he be released to go and live in with a friend in Enderby in September 2019. The friend paid $2,000 to act as Hamdan's bondsperson and promised the court he would supervise the then 38-year-old to adhere to the 25 conditions of his release which included a ban on using the internet.

Hamdan's story in Canada starts in 2002 when, after three years in the U.S., he crossed into Canada claiming asylum and stating he'd converted from Islam to Christianity.

Hamdan's bondsperson in Enderby got to know him when the two lived in Vernon and worked construction together more than a decade ago. The bondsperson described Hamdan as "like a big brother." Court documents say the two worked in Fort St. John together, the location where he was ultimately arrested.

After the 2014 deadly terrorist attacks in Ottawa, Hamdan was arrested following an RCMP blitz on social media in an attempt to identify potential threats to Canada.

Hamdan had praised the attacks on Parliament and made more than 80 posts using multiple Facebook profiles encouraging terrorist acts of murder and lone-wolf attacks. He identified the Revelstoke dam, among other locations, as a possible terrorist attack target and openly supported ISIS.

“Dear muslim brother and sister... the Islamic State is the solution to all our problems,” read one Facebook post. “Lone wolves we salute you,” reads another. Court documents say he graffitied the ISIS flag on his prison cell wall.

He was charged with four terrorist-related charges: counselling murder, counselling assault causing bodily harm, counselling mischief to property for the benefit of a terrorist group, and knowingly instructing the carrying-out of terrorist activity.

However, in September 2017 Hamdan was acquitted of all charges.

The Justice ruled in part, that while Hamdan appeared to indicate his intent to engage in acts of terrorism, that did not amount to counselling others to commit such acts.

Hamdan's case is highlighted in a scholarly Alberta Law Review Society article critical of Canada's "incoherent" terrorist speech laws.

Months after he was acquitted, Hamdan filed a lawsuit against federal and provincial authorities accusing them of a “reckless, intentional,” and “deliberate” disregard of his rights.

On the same day he was acquitted, Hamdan had his refugee status revoked and was issued a deportation order on the basis he was a danger to the security of Canada. He was transferred to the Canadian Border Service Agency to remain in custody.

He's now fighting his deportation arguing that he will be persecuted if returned to Jordan. In a court document, he says he will be "killed" if he goes back there.

Hamdan had 27 detention reviews which all declared him a danger to Canada and that he should remain behind bars.

That was until, in the summer of 2019, the Immigration and Refugee Board ordered Hamdan to be released stating he "does not pose a danger to the public if released with appropriate conditions.”

The Canada Border Services Agency fought against the decision but a Federal Court judge dismissed its appeal and allowed Hamdan to be released to live in Enderby.

Where he is right now, the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada won’t say. After confirming that Hamdan had left Enderby, the Immigration Board told iNFOnews.ca it should not have shared that information.

The Immigration Board said under a further review of the file, it had been determined that the matter was private as per the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act.

How much of Hamdan’s back story is true is hard to quantify. A judge once said Hamdan was an "unmitigated liar" who had not "uttered one truthful word since he came to Canada.”

Even the bondsperson and friend from Enderby told the RCMP he thought Hamdan was “full of shit” and that he made up lots of stories.

According to court documents, Hamdan had boasted that he was involved in a major international drug dealing ring, although there was no proof to suggest this was true.

When the friend in Enderby was asked by immigration officials if Hamdan had smuggled hash overseas he replied:

“I really doubt it… I wasn't there, so I can't say 100 per cent for sure, but I would, I would highly doubt it.”


To contact a reporter for this story, email Ben Bulmer or call (250) 309-5230 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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