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Hassan Diab is a sociology lecturer at the University of Ottawa and Carleton University in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. He is a Lebanese-born Canadian citizen.

Hassan Diab was born in Lebanon in 1953, and started his university studies in sociology in Beirut. He received his Ph.D. from Syracuse University in Syracuse, New York. He moved to Ottawa in 2006.[1]

Dr. Diab was arrested by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) on November 13, 2008, at the request of French authorities who want him extradited to stand trial for his alleged role in a synagogue bombing in Paris in October 1980. The bomb was planted in a motorcycle saddlebag outside the Rue Copernic synagogue and killed three Frenchmen, an Israeli woman.[2]

Dr. Diab denies all charges.[3] Diab's lawyer said it is a case of mistaken identity and stated that Diab was not in Paris at the time of the bombing. Friends, colleagues, and former professors of Dr. Diab were shocked and baffled by the news that he was accused and arrested for the attack.[4] His thesis adviser, a noted Jewish scholar, has vouched for Diab's academic and personal credentials; he supports Diab's innocence of these accusations.

In July 2009, Dr. Hassan Diab was hired to teach a summer course (July-August) at Carleton University. His teaching contract was terminated after a press release by B'nai Brith on July 28, 2009.[5] His termination, without notice or cause, has brought condemnation of Carleton's administration for "caving in to a special interest group." Carleton University professors continue to support Dr. Diab stating that Diab's termination violates Carleton University's contract obligations. [6] [7] [8] [9], and the Canadian Association of University Teachers (CAUT) issued a press release condemning the actions of Carleton's administration.[10]

On October 22, 2009, Dr. Diab’s lawyer submitted to the court several reports produced by experts in Canada, the United States, France, and the UK. The lawyer informed the court that intelligence experts are prepared to explain the difference between evidence and intelligence and its “inherent secrecy and non-disclosure”. Moreover, handwriting experts, including a top UK expert, are prepared to refute evidence tendered by French authorities as “demonstrably false”.[11] The reports were the subject of an evidentiary hearing that ended on December 10, 2009. At the end of the hearing, the judge decided that some of those experts may testify at the extradition hearing. The defense is permitted to file reports from all four handwriting experts, and can call any two of these experts to testify at the extradition hearing. The Crown will be allowed to cross-examine all four of the experts if he so chooses.

The defense may call University of Toronto law professor Kent Roach to testify as an expert on the issue of intelligence as evidence at the extradition hearing. [12]

An extradition hearing had been approved and scheduled to begin in January 2010. On December 18, 2009, Assistant Crown Attorney, Claude LeFrancois (representing The Attorney General of Canada) requested an adjournment of the scheduled extradition hearing. Justice Robert Maranger ruled that the extradition hearing be ajourned until February 08, 2010. At that time, the Crown must update the court on the status of the French efforts to "discover" further evidence in the 28-year old incident. The earliest possible date for the hearing will be the end of May. [13] The delay in the hearing adds thousands of dollars to Dr. Diab's legal bills (including the $2,500/month he must pay for the GPS electronic ankle bracelet). At this point in time, Dr. Diab has been unemployed since B'nai Brith issued an inflammatory press release on July 28, 2009.

Dr. Diab remains on bail under very strict conditions: He wears a GPS electronic ankle bracelet, and can only leave his home if accompanied by one of the five people who posted a combined $250,000 in bail.[14]

References

  1. ^ "Ottawa University Teacher Accused in Paris Synagogue Attack Pleads for Bail". March 19, 2009. http://www.montrealgazette.com/Life/Ottawa+teacher+accused+Paris+synagogue+attack+pleads+bail/1407193/story.html.  
  2. ^ "Professor arrested in 1980 blast". Ottawa Citizen. November 14, 2008. http://www.ottawacitizen.com/news/956829/story.html.  
  3. ^ "Ottawa man denies 1980 French synagogue bombing". National Post. November 1, 2007. http://www.nationalpost.com/news/story.html?id=47b9b572-f88c-4799-b1d8-5672fd3a339a&k=22503.  
  4. ^ "Friends Shocked as Ottawa Professor Held in Paris Bombing". Ottawa Citizen. November 15, 2008. http://www.ottawacitizen.com/Technology/962155/story.html.  
  5. ^ . http://www.bnaibrith.ca/prdisplay.php?id=1520.  
  6. ^ . http://www.cbc.ca/canada/ottawa/story/2009/07/31/ottawa-bombing-diab-suspect-professor.html.  
  7. ^ . http://www.cbc.ca/canada/ottawa/story/2009/07/28/ottawa-diab-sociology-carleton.html.  
  8. ^ . http://www.bnaibrith.ca/prdisplay.php?id=1520.  
  9. ^ . http://www.montrealgazette.com/Profs+demand+accused+terrorist+given+back+Carleton+University/1850593/story.html.  
  10. ^ . http://www.canada.com/news/Ottawa+university+slammed+firing+terrorism+suspect/1842135/story.html.  
  11. ^ "Hearing set for prof accused of synagogue bombing". The Ottawa Sun. October 22, 2009. http://www.ottawasun.com/news/ottawa/2009/10/22/11492971.html.  
  12. ^ "Experts allowed to testify at Diab trial, judge rules". Ottawa Citizen. December 12, 2009. http://www.ottawacitizen.com/news/news/2332943/story.html.  
  13. ^ "Diab's extradition hearing to be delayed for months". Ottawa Citizen. December 19, 2009. http://www.ottawacitizen.com/news/news/2360752/story.html.  
  14. ^ "Diab Gets Date for Extradition Hearing". The Ottawa Sun. June 2, 2009. http://www.ottawasun.com/news/ottawa/2009/06/02/9656041.html.  

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