One of North America’s leading Islamic experts testified at the hearing for John Nuttall and Amanda Korody, supporting the defense team’s position that the two were coerced into planning their attack at the legislature three years ago.
Dr. Omid Safi, Director of Islamic Studies at Duke University, testified that Nuttall was confused and repeatedly seeking spiritual guidance from the undercover RCMP officer.
He said Nuttall had great reservations about killing innocent people, and expressed doubts and moral ambiguity.
But each time, the undercover officer told him it was not possible to speak to anyone his plans – including his mother.
“It makes me want to cry, how he trusted them like a Muslim brother, and to find out that the guy was evil,” said Maureen Smith, who has watched her son at the trial most days.
“It makes me so angry and hurt. I feel like crying and screaming at the same time. They wouldn’t even let him see me, or even call me when he went to Victoria.”
Safi said Nuttall attempted to reach out to Imams, but the undercover officer dissuaded him.
Crown attempted to get the testimony of Safi thrown out, questioning his qualification and the relevance of his evidence.
Nuttall and Korody were found guilty last year of murder conspiracy, but proceedings into whether the duo were entrapped by RCMP has been ongoing for months, and are still weeks away from being finished.
If a judge rules in favour of defense, Nuttall and Korody could walk, despite the earlier verdict.
“If there’s true justice, he will walk away,” said Smith.
“I wish he could be compensated through the hell he’s been through. I don’t know if someone could recover from something like this. I hope we can hug each other in person really, really soon.”
– With files from Rumina Daya