Vancouver: The Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada has ordered the deportation of a Tamil migrant after finding out that he had been a member of the banned group, Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) from 1991 to 1996, making him the first of the 492 migrants who arrived onboard the MV Sun Sea to be declared inadmissible to the country.
The man, whose name, age and identifying details can’t be published, had admitted to the Canada Border Services Agency that he had been a member of the LTTE, a banned terrorist organization.
He also told the border officials that he had been shot in the leg during a dramatic fight at sea with a Sri Lankan ship.
However, he maintained that he had never wanted to join the organization and had been tricked by friends into joining it when he was a teenager, adding that he had tried to leave the group at one point, but was caught and punished as a consequence.
Carla Medley, CBSA’s hearings representative, argued the man should be deported under a section of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act that deems refugee claimants inadmissible if they engaged in subversion or terrorism against a democratic government.
She said: “He was, in fact, a member of the LTTE during the height of its terrorist campaign against the Sri Lankan government.”
Agreeing to the assessment, Michael McPhalen, the judge for the case, said: “I’m satisfied when I consider all of that there are reasonable grounds to believe that you were a member of the LTTE. The law requires that I issue a deportation order and I so order.”
The man, who’s been held at a correctional facility in Maple Ridge since the MV Sun Sea arrived, had nothing to say and showed no emotions as the ruling was translated, The Globe and Mail reports.
After the ruling, Robin Bajer, the man’s lawyer, said he would have to speak with his client before deciding whether to apply for a Federal Court review. He declined further comment.