Canada is a geographically massive nation and it harbors many gamblers within its borders. The history of gambling has been all over the place, but rather liberal policies in Canadian gambling law are what may lead to an immigrant man’s freedom from questioning and imprisonment.
Terror suspect Mohamed Harkat, moved to Canada in October of 1995. Since then, he has been under surveillance and accused frequently to being a sleeper agent for al-Qaeda in Canada. Some of his behaviors, such as not turning in an alias to the authorities and meeting with well-known Bin Laden associates, lead government forces to believe that he is, in fact, a terrorist.
There are several factors to Mohamed Harkat’s life that his lawyers are attempting to use to prove the man’s innocence. He married and settled down with a Canadian and has contacted the police without reserve on three different occasions, drawing attention to himself that would not be favored in the event that he would be a sleeper agent.
Lawyers are also trying to use Harkat’s passion for gambling as a form of proof towards his innocence. Al-Qaeda is a group that is composed mostly of Islamic religious idealists of a rather extreme order, and such individuals would not participate freely in gambling, as it’s quite specifically against Islamic law to gamble.
Land-based and internet gambling in Canada are both legal at this point and enjoy a certain degree of popularity. Though the Canadian government doesn’t issue licenses for internet casino operation, the independent Kahnawake Mohawk Territory, located in Canada, is one of the largest online gambling centers in the world.
Harkat did not frequent online casinos in Canada, but visited the brick and mortar casinos within the country. He is currently on the fringe of being deported and will stand trial for up to 5 weeks as the government decides on his status.