- The Washington Times - Thursday, May 7, 2015

A Canadian judge ordered the release on Thursday of a convicted terrorist who killed a U.S. Army medic in 2002.

Omar Khadr killed U.S. Army Delta Force medic Sgt. 1st. Class Christopher Speer in Afghanistan. He was sentenced to 40 years in prison by a military court, but a 2010 plea deal with the U.S. Justice Department lowered his sentence to eight years, provided it was served in Canada. The convicted terrorist was born in Toronto but raised for most of his life in Pakistan.

Khadr, now 28 years old, was 15 at the time he threw the grenade that killed Sgt. 1st. Class Speer. His lawyers say he is a changed man, and one Canadian court called him a “model prisoner,” Fox News reported Thursday.

The terrorist’s legal team appealed his conviction, and the judge of the Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench granted him bail on April 24. That decision was appealed by Canada’s government.

“We feel that Mr. Khadr, until a final decision is rendered by the court, should stay behind bars,” Canada’s Public Safety Minister, Steven Blaney, told a local paper, NPR reported.

The Canadian government asserted that the terms of Khadr’s release from Guantanamo Bay detention facility barred the court from granting him bail, that he is a risk to the public and that doing so could be diplomatically damaging, NPR reported.

Terrorism expert Max Abrahms of Northeastern University told Fox that officials should not be surprised if Khadr ultimately turns towards terrorism again.

“The terrorism recidivism rate is quite high, particularly for Islamist terrorists. Indeed, a very large portion of the most senior Islamic State leadership was once behind bars. When you release from prison an Islamist terrorist, do not be surprised if he re-engages in terrorism,” Mr. Abrahms said.


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