Othman Ayed Hamdan acquitted of all charges

Othman Hamdan is escorted from court in Fort St. John in July, 2015. File photo

VANCOUVER, B.C. — A Fort St. John man has been acquitted by B.C. Supreme Court Justice Bruce Butler of all four terrorism-related charges he was facing this afternoon.

According to the Vancouver Sun, Justice Butler said that while Hamdan’s posts could be considered offensive to most Canadians, that does not mean that he was encouraging or inciting acts of murder, assault and mischief for terrorism-related purposes, which is what the Crown alleged. The judge criticized the RCMP’s method of copying posts from Hamdan’s Facebook accounts by only submitting screen grabs of offending posts as evidence. Butler said that other content that could have provided context to the posts was not preserved.

Testifying in his own defence, Hamden claimed that the information that was missing would prove that he was not advocating terrorism attacks, but simply trying to explain why lone-wolf attacks were taking place in North America.

Hamdan was arrested in Fort St. John in July 2015, when he was charged with three counts of counselling the commission of indictable offences for the benefit of, at the direction of or in association with a terrorist organization. In this case, the alleged terrorist network was ISIL.

Story courtesy The Vancouver Sun: http://vancouversun.com/news/crime/judge-to-hand-down-verdict-today-against-b-c-terror-suspect