First Canadian Convicted of Leaving to Join Terrorist Group Sent Back to Prison for Threats | The Canadian News

The first Canadian convicted of attempting to leave the country to join a terrorist group has been sent back to prison after allegedly threatening staff at the community house where he lived while participating in a de-radicalization program.

In a decision published Tuesday, the Canadian Parole Board reversed the legal release of Mohamed Hassan Hersi on the grounds that the 35-year-old posed “an undue risk to society.”

Hersi was also caught with two cell phones hidden in the lining of a suitcase, a violation of his conditions of release, according to the decision.

The decision means that you must return to prison. You can reapply for parole in one year, the Parole Board said.

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A former Toronto security guard, Hersi was arrested in 2011 while trying to board a plane at Pearson Airport. The RCMP alleged that he intended to join the Somali terrorist group Al-Shabaab.

After his release from prison on December 22, 2020, Hersi lived in a community residential facility, worked at a plant as a cleaner, and participated in Project ReSet, a program designed to reform violent extremists.

But the Parole Board wrote in its decision that Hersi had threatened a staff member at its facility in August, allegedly saying that it would “find the staff member and harm him.”

Although he was allowed to apologize and return to the facility, he again made comments to staff “interpreted as threatening”, allegedly saying that he could make their lives hell and that he had “connections” to help him.

The Correctional Service of Canada recommended revoking his statutory release, which releases most offenders after they have served two-thirds of their sentences.

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At a hearing last week, Hersi “readily accepted responsibility for inappropriate behavior and actions,” while insisting that he did not intend to threaten staff.

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But the Parole Board said it “did not have a viable release plan” and had lost the support of prison officials. It is their collective professional opinion that their risk will not be manageable in continued release. “

“Despite a recognized positive performance during most of its legal publication, the Board believes that its attitude and behavior have deteriorated to the point where its risk can no longer be managed in legal publication.”

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First Canadian convicted of leaving to join terrorist group sent back to prison for threats - image

The decision is the latest in which the Parole Board has expressed concern about the risks posed by the growing number of criminals in Canada convicted of terrorist offenses.

Hersi was convicted in 2014 and sentenced to 10 years. Although he was the first to be convicted of attempting to leave Canada to participate in terrorism, the authorities have repeatedly applied this crime, most recently against ISIS supporters.

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Before he was released from prison on legal freedom 11 months ago, the Parole Board wrote that Hersi continued to “pose too high a risk of becoming obsessed with Al-Shabaab or other jihadist organizations.”

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