A youth charged with terrorism-related offences has been released under strict conditions following a bail hearing in Kingston, Ont.
The youth, who cannot be identified under provisions of the Youth Criminal Justice Act, will be required to be in the presence of one of two approved family members at all times.
He is also forbidden to use the internet unless it’s approved for education reasons and he must remain in Ontario, surrender his passport and wear an RCMP-supplied electronic-monitoring device.
The two family members are responsible for ensuring the youth abides by his release conditions and could be charged themselves if he violates them.
A Canadian police investigation sparked by a tip from the FBI culminated in his arrest in January. Police said at the time that the youth had plotted a terrorist attack but had not chosen a specific target.
Clad in a purple jacket, the youth sat bowed over, looking at the floor, during much of the two hours that Justice Herbert Kreling took to review the arguments made by defence lawyer Simon Borys and the Crown over the course of three days of hearings.
But he smiled numerous times after Kreling announced the decision to release him from custody.
None of the evidence, submissions or reasons presented during the hearing can be published under a separate publication ban that covers bail hearings, during which the Crown can present a great deal of evidence with minimal reply from the defence.
“Ultimately, the justice of the peace concluded that the young person could be released in the circumstances described in the release documents,” Borys said to reporters after his client was released. “Obviously the young person is quite happy with that decision.”
The Crown does have the right to ask another judge to review Kreling’s decision, Borys said, even as he asked the public to trust it.
“I understand the concern that people may have given the nature of the allegations,” he said. “At the end of the day, the justice of the peace determined in this case that the risk to the public, among other things, could be managed with the young person’s release. So we respect that decision and ask other people as well to trust in the system as well that that has been addressed and balanced against other competing interests.”
The youth was charged in January with knowingly facilitating a terrorist activity and counselling another person to “deliver, place, discharge or detonate an explosive or other lethal device” in a public place.
He was subsequently charged last month with uttering a threat as well as “making, or having in his possession or under his care of control an explosive substance” designed to endanger life “or cause serious damage to property.”
The youth is also accused of “doing anything with intent” to cause harm or death using an explosive.
He is scheduled to make his next appearance in court on April 30.