Here is a follow-up letter from Paul Fromm, highlighting
once more the difficult situation in which Ernst finds himself where he is
systematically prevented from assisting in his own legal defense:
Canadian Association for Free Expression Box 332, Rexdale,
Ontario, M9W 5L3 Ph: 905-897-7221; FAX: 905-277-3914
Paul Fromm, B.Ed, M.A. Director
August 5, 2003
Mr. Fred Williams, Assistant Regional Director, Adult
Institutions, Ministry of Public Safety and Security, Etobicoke, ON. BY
Dear Mr. Williams:
Further to our telephone conversation today, I am writing
to convey serious concerns about the incarceration of Ernst Zundel at the
Metro West Detention Centre. I write as Mr. Zundel's legal representative.
As you know, Mr. Zundel has been convicted of no crime and
is being held in detention under a disputed immigration matter. He is not
a criminal, but a detainee. Also, he is 64 years of age and in
questionable health. While he has had extensive experience before Canadian
courts, he has never been convicted under the Criminal Code. He had never
been charged, much less, convicted of an act of violence. He has a long
history of compliance with the legal system, including 11 bail orders. He
is by religious belief a pacifist. He is also a health devotee and abhors
drugs and smoking.
I mention all this, as his profile is likely very
different from that of your average inmate. His age and history would seem
to dictate some consideration.
Mr. Zundel is faced with a number of very complex legal
cases: 1. an appeal against an Immigration and Refugee Board decision that
he is no longer a landed immigrant; 2. a bail request pursuant to a
detention order, following a CSIS certificate, under the Immigration and
Refugee Protection Act (next dates for this are September 23 and 24); 3.
challenge of the reasonableness of the CSIS certificate declaring him a
threat to national security; 4. a habeas corpus motion in Provincial Court
challenging his continued detention (to be heard October 10); 5. a motion
seeking leave to seek judicial review of a Canadian Human Rights Tribunal
decision of January, 2002; and 6. a motion before the Sixth Circuit Court
of Appeals in Cincinnati seeking redress for his illegal deportation from
the U.S., February 19, 2003.
Just the documentation for challenging the CSIS
certificate amounts to five thick volumes of documents, as well as a
50-page report. There may well be transcripts to come. It is a fundamental
right of natural justice that a prisoner be able to assist in his defence.
To do that, Mr. Zundel needs a pen, coloured highlighter, post-it notes
(for markiing pages) and paper clips. When he learned that all Mr. Zundel
has been allowed are pencil stubs like those you might use to mark your
score in a bowling alley, Federal Judge Pierre Blais commented last
Wednesday: "Even in mediaeval times, prisoners were allowed to use
pen and paper. I also have respect for Mr. Zundel. He is not a criminal.
He is entitled to a little bit of flexibility."
Mr. Zundel is also not allowed a chair or a pillow.
Surely, this treatment has nothing to do with security and seems more like
disciplinary punishment. Yet, Mr. Zundel has zealously sought to comply
with directions he's received in the Metro West Detention Centre.
Therefore, I request the following:
* a pillow and chair for basic human comfort; * a pen,
paperclips, post-it notes, and coloured highlighter * access to hardcover
books. Several of the books Mr. Zundel needs for his case are hardcovers.
Yet, prison security staff say they are not allowed.
I look forward to your reply and would be happy to meet
with you at your convenience.