WATCH ABOVE: A B.C. man is the first to be charged under Canada’s new anti-terrorism law with going to fight with a terror group in Syria. Robin Gill has the details
VANCOUVER – The RCMP Integrated National Security Enforcement Team (INSET) has charged a B.C. man for leaving the country to take part in terrorist activities.
Twenty-five-year-old Hasibullah Yusufzai is accused of helping terrorists.
He left for Syria in January apparently to join Islamist fighters and is now being sought ” to commit an offence for the benefit of, at the direction of or in association with a terrorist group, contrary to section 83.201 of the Criminal Code.”
He was charged under Bill S-7, which came into effect on July 15, 2013.
It is now considered a criminal offence “to leave” or “attempt to leave” the country to take part in terrorist activity.
“This investigation underscores the reality that there are individuals leaving Canada to take part in terrorist activity,” says Assistant Commissioner James Malizia. “Further, it highlights the fact that new legislation introduced under Bill S-7, which came into effect in July 2013, enhances our ability to combat terrorist activity. These charges reaffirm the RCMP’s resolve to aggressively pursue terrorist acts to the fullest extent of the law.”
The RCMP says they are working actively with their international partners on this case.
When Global News knocked on the door of his family’s home in Burnaby, a man who appeared to be Hasibullah’s father quickly opened the door and then closed it, telling our cameraman to go away.
WATCH: Reporter John Daly at Hasibullah Yusufzai’s family home in Burnaby
A neighbour said they were a nice and quiet family.
Jendruck said in his opinion, the charges were a long time coming.
“We’re definitely going to see similar charges in the coming years as the Syrian conflict continues,” said Jendruck.
He added that this legislation lets authorities charge people before they leave Canada.
“It gives authorities the power to pinpoint possible threats before they actually leave the country.”
When and if Yusufzai returns to Canada, he will be arrested and charged.
WATCH: Evan Jendruck is a terrorism analyst with Jane’s Terrorism and Insurgency Centre and provides Global News with some insight
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