POLITICS

Omar Khadr Prison Transfer Requested By Lawyer

08/13/2013 05:01 EDT | Updated 10/13/2013 05:12 EDT
AP
FILE - In this file handout image taken from a 2003 U.S. Department of Defense surveillance video and provided Tuesday, July 15, 2008 by Omar Khadr's defense lawyers, Khadr is shown in an interrogation room at the Guatanamo U.S. Naval Base prison while being questioned by members of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service. A decade after Khadr was pulled near death from the rubble of a bombed-out compound in Afghanistan, the Canadian citizen set foot on Canadian soil early Saturday, Sept. 29, 2012, after an American military flight from the notorious prison in Guantanamo Bay. Khadr pleaded guilty in 2010 to killing a U.S. soldier in Afghanistan and was eligible to return to Canada from Guantanamo Bay last October under terms of a plea deal. Canada's conservative government took almost a year to approve the transfer. (AP Photo/U.S. Department of Defense via The Canadian Press, File)
EDMONTON - A lawyer representing former Guantanamo detainee Omar Khadr wants his client moved out of a federal prison in Edmonton.

Dennis Edney has filed an application in court to have the 26-year-old transferred out of the maximum-security Edmonton Institution.

Edney said Tuesday that the Toronto-born Khadr was sentenced for crimes committed as a teenager and he should be in another facility, such as a provincial jail.

"Under the Transfer of Offenders Act, Omar Khadr should be treated as a youth, based upon the sentence he received — an eight year sentence — and not be lodged in a maximum security prison as an adult.

"Our government's misconduct is a continuation of his ill treatment in Guantanamo."

Khadr was held for a decade in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, before he pleaded guilty to war crimes that included killing an American special forces soldier in Afghanistan when he was 15.

A U.S. military commission sentenced him to another eight years behind bars and he was transferred to Canada.

He first served as a maximum-security inmate in Millhaven penitentiary west of Kingston, Ont.

But when he was threatened there by a fellow inmate, he was put into isolation. A few months later, he was moved to Alberta.

Edney hopes his application for another transfer can be heard in court next month.

He said he has received a letter from federal justice officials steadfast in their position that Khadr is serving an adult sentence and should be in a federal prison.

Public Safety Minister Steven Blaney also issued a statement Tuesday.

"Omar Khadr pleaded guilty to very serious crimes, including the murder of American Army medic Sgt. Christopher Speer," Blaney said. "The Government of Canada will vigorously defend against any attempted court action to lessen his punishment for these crimes."

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