Canada: Former Government Worker Convicted on 5 Terrorism Charges
A former computer programmer for the Department of Foreign Affairs of Canada was convicted on five terrorism-related charges on Wednesday. Justice Douglas J. A. Rutherford of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice ruled that the programmer, Mohammad Momin Khawaja, had given money and support to a terrorist group that planned bombings in England. A British court found five people linked with Mr. Khawaja guilty last year of taking part in the bombing plot, which was not carried out; they were sentenced to life in prison. The Canadian judge said prosecutors had failed to prove that Mr. Khawaja knew about the British group’s plans to bomb British targets, but he found Mr. Khawaja guilty of having created a remote bomb detonator that the defendant called the “hifidigimonster.” The defense said that Mr. Khawaja thought the plotters planned to use the device in Afghanistan or Iraq.
“There is ample evidence apart from the support and preparation for violent jihad with the mujahedeen in Afghanistan or elsewhere, establishing that Momin Khawaja knew he was dealing with a group whose objects and purposes included activity that meets the (Criminal) Code definition of terrorist activity,” the judge wrote in his 24,000-word decision.
“His most tangible and visible facilitation of that activity was his work in developing the Hi-Fi Digimonster, the remote trigger for an IED. He agreed to build about 30 of them. On the evidence, it is unclear what he knew or anticipated as to where they would be used, or that Khawaja even cared where they would be used. His emir or leader asked him to provide them and he agreed.”