A Lebanese-Canadian academic previously accused of a Paris bombing in 1980 is suing the Canadian government over his extradition to France to face a faulty prosecution, AFP reported on Monday, January 14th.
The Ottawa sociology professor was identified as 66-year-old Hassan Diab. The father of two has filed a court motion against the Canadian government, accusing it of negligent investigation and malicious prosecution, further stating that the federal officials have violated his constitutional guarantees of freedom of movement, liberty, and security of person.
According to court documents, Diab is seeking Can$90 million (US$69 million) from Ottawa, alleging negligence, deceit, and abuse of process.
Diab was arrested in November 2008 following a request from the French authorities after he had become a suspect in the 1980 bombing of a Paris synagogue that killed four people and injured dozens of others, an accusation he has always denied, according to a local Canadian media source.
The arrest came following a sketch of the bomber, which resembled Diab, together with the discovery of a passport in his name with entry and exit stamps from Spain, where the bomber is believed to have fled.
Diab was then extradited to France where he spent three years in jail, including time in solitary confinement.
The 1980 bombing on the narrow Copernic Street that day was the first terrorist attack that had killed four of the French Jewish community and fatally injured several others since the Nazi occupation in World War II.
Diab, who had spent a total of nine years behind bars or under strict bail conditions awaiting trial in the two countries, is now striving to win a minor compensation for the years he spent wrongfully incarcerated; however, the assertions have not yet been proven in court and the government has yet to file a response.
In January 2018, his allegations were dismissed by the French court and he was finally granted an immediate release. He is now back in Canada with his family, CTV news reported.