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Lawyers for Awso Peshdary, an accused extremist recruiter, are asking a judge to hear their pleas for access to information they say could help their client’s case.

Defence counsel want the disclosure of materials underpinning a Canadian Security Intelligence Service surveillance warrant as a step toward challenging the warrant’s validity.

Fady Mansour and Solomon Friedman made arguments on Peshdary’s behalf Monday in Federal Court, their latest effort to peel back layers of the initial investigation that led to his arrest.

Federal lawyers say Peshdary’s counsel are on a fishing expedition, noting they have already received a CSIS affidavit related to the warrant, which authorized surveillance of Peshdary for a year beginning in October 2012.

The spy agency subsequently shared some fruits of its warrant with the RCMP.

Peshdary, 28, was arrested in Ottawa in February 2015. He has pleaded not guilty to charges including participation in the activities of a terrorist group.

His criminal trial began in Ontario Superior Court in June after various delays. The trial is tentatively slated to resume next month.

Two other Ottawa-area men — accused of joining extremists overseas — were also charged with terror-related offences.

The RCMP says Peshdary’s co-accused, John Maguire and Khadar Khalib, were active members of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, or ISIL. Their whereabouts are unknown and they may have died overseas.

The extremist organization’s members swarmed across large sections of Syria and Iraq, but have experienced setbacks in recent years.

Peshdary was an associate of Maguire and once hoped to travel abroad with him, according to the Mounties. They believe Peshdary stayed in contact with Maguire, and together they hatched a conspiracy to send other Canadians to Syria to join ISIL.

Peshdary and Maguire were involved with Khalib, who travelled to Syria at the end of March 2014 to join ISIL, the Mounties say.

Peshdary, escorted to the courtroom by police Monday, watched the proceedings unfold.

His lawyers argue information gathered through the CSIS surveillance was crucial in helping the RCMP obtain its own wiretap authorization.

Mansour told Federal Court Justice James O’Reilly disclosure of underlying CSIS source material is needed to determine whether the spy service has fulfilled its obligations.

Crown lawyer Andre Seguin said Mansour was merely hoping that additional disclosure of documents might turn up something to indicate the CSIS warrant was improperly issued. “That’s a fishing expedition.”

O’Reilly is expected to rule on the matter before the criminal trial resumes.

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