Monday, November 4, 2013

Hassan Diab: The Ottawa professor is fighting in the Ontario Court of Appeal against extradition to France as a suspect in a decades-old terror bombing of a Paris synagogue; The Canadian Press reports that the case hinges on a "wholly unreliable" analysis of five words. The appeal continues tomorrow - Tuesday. (November 5, 2013);

STORY: "Ottawa man challenges extradition order," by reporter Allison Jones, published by the Canadian Press on November 4, 2013.

PHOTO CAPTION:  "Hassan Diab, the Ottawa professor who has been ordered extradited to France by the Canadian government, speaks at a press conference while his lawyer, Donald Bayne, listens on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Friday, April 13, 2012. Diab says an Ontario judge and the federal justice minister made legal errors in deciding he should be extradited to France as a suspect in a decades-old terror bombing."

GIST: "The fate of an Ottawa professor facing extradition to France over suspicions he was involved in a synagogue bombing there hinges on a "wholly unreliable" analysis of five words, Ontario's highest court heard Monday. French authorities suspect Hassan Diab, 59, was involved in the anti-Semitic bombing of a Paris synagogue in 1980 that killed four people and injured dozens of others. Diab denies any role in the deadly attack, saying the unwavering moral principle throughout his life has been to promote equality and respect for all. Lawyers for Diab challenged the decision to extradite him Monday in the Court of Appeal for Ontario, arguing before the panel of three judges that fundamental mistakes were made.........The case centres on whether a handwriting analysis that linked Diab to the bombing is reliable, Edwardh said. French expert Anne Bisotti looked at writing on a hotel registration card believed to have been written by the bomber. It includes the suspected fake name of Alexander Panadriyu and the words Lanarca, technician and Cyprus in block letters. Bisotti concluded there was a "very strong presumption" Diab wrote it, but the defence found three other experts who cast doubt on Bisotti's report. The three defence experts said they were "deeply troubled" by how Bisotti reached her conclusions and criticized her "glaring failure to use recognized methodology," Edwardh said. "Her conclusions are wholly unreliable," Edwardh said. "Justice Maranger fundamentally misappreciated the evidence before him.".........The court should keep in mind Canada's history with wrongful convictions when weighing expert evidence, Edwardh said, citing the cases of disgraced pathologist Charles Smith. Once considered an unassailable expert on child forensic pathology, an inquiry found that errors in Smith's work were responsible, in part, for several people being wrongfully convicted and sent to prison for killing children."

The entire story can be found at:

See Ottawa Citizen commentary  by Jo Wood, a member of Diab's support committee; with link to Hassan Diab's factum in the Ontario Court of Appeal at the link below:  "Despite literally thousands of pages related to the investigation, the Crown attorney (representing France) unequivocally stated that the extradition case against Diab “turns or falls” on a single handwriting analysis report that compares Diab’s handwriting to a mere five words written by the suspect in 1980. Notwithstanding the dangers of relying on a “pseudo-science” as the basis of depriving someone of their liberty, the handwriting analysis report against Diab was appallingly lacking. The extradition judge described it as “very problematic,” “convoluted, very confusing, with conclusions that are suspect” and “highly susceptible to criticism and impeachment.” Five world-renowned handwriting experts testified that the handwriting analysis report against Diab is based on a “fundamentally flawed” methodology and that it is “wholly unreliable” and “utterly biased.” It is hard to imagine a more damning review. The experts also pointed out that the actual handwriting evidence tends to exclude Diab as the suspect. This was in fact the French authorities’ second attempt to produce a handwriting analysis report that links Diab to the bombing. Two previous reports against Diab were withdrawn after the defence revealed that they were based on comparison handwriting samples that were not written by Diab. At the extradition hearing, Diab was not allowed to introduce evidence showing that his palm prints and finger prints do not match those of the suspect. The judge stated “whether I like it or not” such evidence which casts doubt on the prosecutors’ case is inadmissible during an extradition hearing; only evidence and inferences suggestive of the defendant’s guilt are permitted."


Dear Reader. Keep your eye on the Charles Smith Blog. We are following this case.

I have added a search box for content in this blog which now encompasses several thousand posts. The search box is located  near the bottom of the screen just above the list of links. I am confident that this powerful search tool provided by "Blogger" will help our readers and myself get more out of the site.

The Toronto Star, my previous employer for more than twenty incredible years, has put considerable effort into exposing the harm caused by Dr. Charles Smith and his protectors - and into pushing for reform of Ontario's forensic pediatric pathology system. The Star has a "topic" section which focuses on recent stories related to Dr. Charles Smith. It can be found at:

Information on "The Charles Smith Blog Award"- and its nomination process - can be found at:

I look forward to hearing from readers at:

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