Judge excludes evidence from trial due to breach of rights by RCMP

Josh
Josh Pennell
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Some evidence collected in what was the biggest ecstasy bust to date in this province can’t be used in the case due to breaches in the Charter of Rights.

The decision came down from Newfoundland Supreme Court Justice James Adams last week. The original case involves Hassan Kamel Al-Ameri and Mahmood Ahmed Alsaihati, both 24, and both charged with possession of ecstasy and possession for the purpose of trafficking.

In 2009, the pair wwas arrested at a St. Clare Avenue apartment in St. John’s. The bust was said to have netted 15,000 pills, cocaine, marijuana and about $4,000 cash.

Adams’ ruling involves only Al-Ameri.

The judge found that the RCMP had seriously breached the Charter of Rights and Freedoms through its use of force and by arresting Al-Ameri without a warrant.

Consequently, Adams ruled that drugs discovered at the Al-Ameri residence — said in the court documents to include, but not be limited to, two grams of cocaine, a small quantity of marijuana, a small quantity of ecstasy powder, an opened box containing three ecstasy pills, documents, vacuum-seal bags, cellphones, a sheet of names and numbers, money, scales and computer equipment — should be excluded from the evidence.

Al-Ameri had not only applied for the exclusion of the evidence, but also a stay of proceedings — stopping further legal process in a trial.

Adams, however, says in the court documents that despite the breach of Al-Ameri’s rights, there are no grounds for the trial to be halted.

Court documents obtained by The Telegram show that the RCMP suspected Al-Ameri of receiving illegal drugs through the mail. The police had intercepted a package that was addressed to Al-Ameri’s address, but not to him personally.

The package was found to have a large number of ecstasy pills. The police then requested a warrant that would allow them to secure Al-Ameri’s apartment, arrest him and search the residence. They also requested a tracking warrant that would allow them a controlled delivery of the package to Al-Ameri’s residence.

It was later disclosed that the information the police had on Al-Ameri was dated and came almost exclusively from a single-source drug user with a criminal record who had claimed Al-Ameri carried guns.

 

The person was paid for the information.

Al-Ameri did not have a criminal record at the time and the RCMP did not receive a warrant for his arrest.

The RCMP employed what is described in the court documents as a “hard entry” into Al-Ameri’s apartment. They used a stun grenade to disorient anyone who may have been in the apartment with a bright flash of light and loud sounds.

“They stormed the residence in riot gear, including balaclavas, and wielding M16 and MP5 automatic rifles. They physically forced the occupants of the house to the floor on their stomachs, tied their hands behind their backs and forced their feet up towards their buttocks,” the court document reads.

 

josh.pennell@thetelegram

Organizations: RCMP, The Telegram

Geographic location: Clare Avenue

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  • Thugbegone
    September 05, 2013 - 07:41

    Yesterday morning two citizens of Spaniard's Bay did "the right thing" and prevented a local business from being once again targeted by thugs bent on robbing him and perhaps injuring him or worse. Additionally they were largely responsible for the apprehention on these animals and with the assistance of the RCMP these thugs were taken into custody wherein no doubt lawyers will now prepare a case against those responsible for their arrest suggesting perhaps that they were simply stopping by to pick up some sandwiches on the way to picking blueberries. Later the same day RCMP officers in the same town performed a lightning response (which I witnessed) to a distress call wherein an individual in mortal danger was plucked from the ocean by a young officer assisted by other RCMP and a "cold water rescue" team. Never in my life have I been so proud of the cops and ordinary citizens who took it upon themselves to do the right thing. Congratulations to all of you who give a glimmer of hope to those of us who shiver in fear at the outrageousness of our system of law which is sickening at best. We must stand up to the thugs both inside and outside the legal system. There are still people with morals out there with the courage to step up. Very refreshing indeed. I do agree with Philly Druggett. The system is broken. We have to support each other as the Charter apprears to be immoral and in its current form makes fools of young officers who put themselves on the line every day to protect our citizens only to be made a fool of by men in wigs some of whom whine like babies when they themselves get targeted by serious criminals carrying cans of spray paint.

  • bob
    September 05, 2013 - 01:07

    Pilly Druggett- Exactly!!! It was harder to find Ecstasy this week... Stupid cops.

  • gord
    September 04, 2013 - 22:30

    One thing is for certain, this example of our justice system displays a real reason why enforcement recruiting is having problems. Who in there right mind would take employment into a system riddled with loop holes and weeks of paper work only to watch a judge toss it all out because the evidence is there but not obtained letter perfect.

  • Filly
    September 04, 2013 - 07:33

    Yet another blunder by our police force. Zero confidence

  • Pilly Druggett
    September 04, 2013 - 07:17

    I am so glad the judge ruled in favor of Al-Amiri. It's about time judges stopped these thug police men, from interuppting the buisness of these upstanding drug dealers. Same on you police men, storming his house, disorienting him. Stop being so harsh on these people, they are simply trying to make a living like every one else. I just want to drive my pimped out Cadillace Escalade in peace, why do the cops keep hasseling me! All I can say is it's a good thing we have these Justices to protect us from the abuse of police men everywhere. God Bless Canada and the Charter! Oooo Yeah!