Seven stays in total, seven people , free again. Seven people whom, it is quite clear ,there wasn't any evidence to garner a conviction of any sort.
How is that possible , after all weren't they surveilled for years?
This case in Toronto has made me think of the Miami "terrorists". Recall those arrests, right around the same time? It seemed like terrorist cells were everywhere. But were they?
These 'terrorists' who eventually became known as the Liberty 7, have just had their second trial and again it was declared a mistrial! Can you imagine how flimsy the evidence must be? Think about the climate of fear and hysteria over terror and terrorism when not one but two juries, cannot be provided with enough evidence to convict?
"The decision is a setback for the Bush administration, which had touted the case as an example of the government's ability to prevent terrorist attacks but has failed to win convictions in two attempts."
Maybe the Harper government thought it better to just stay the charges, rather then risk looking foolish to the Canadian public. The Bush administration really doesn't have much to lose, as President Bush, is on his way out. Mr Harper on the other hand, would probably like to win a majority election in Canada, so it would be better to spare oneself the embarassement.
An interesting parallel between the Liberty 7 and the Toront 18 , is they were both led by government agents. An FBI informant, known as Brother Mohammed, was posing as an al-Qaeda operative. In the Toronto 18, it was a CSIS agent and star witness Mubin Shaik.
The Liberty 7 and the Toronto 18 were also without guns, weapons or ammo of their own, at the time of there arrest. In the Toronto 18 case it appears the only armed person, was the CSIS agent. Paintball guns really don't count as dangerous weapons, except on laundry day!
In the case of the Liberty 7, it seems the men were trying to con the FBI agent out of the money the agent was offering to finance the terror plot:
But Batiste testified that he was merely trying to con the informant out of $50,000 that was to be used to finance the "plot." Further, the government was not able to prove that the group had any weapons, ammunition or explosives on them at the time of their arrest in June 2006.
What will come of the Liberty 7 ? Will they be tried again, for a 3rd time? It's hard to see that as an option. As for the remaining Toronto 11, will there numbers be reduced again, with more charges stayed? Inquiring minds want to know!