Canadaian court won't hear challenge of secrecy provisions in terror case

Canada's Supreme Court ruled Thursday it would not hear a terrorism suspect's challenge to a law that blocks defendants from seeing secret intelligence related to their cases. Momin Khawaja had challenged the federal legislation, claiming it violated his right to a fair trial. Khawaja, a 29-year-old software developer, is accused of participating in an al-Qaida-inspired cell that plotted bombings in Britain in 2004. Canadian prosecutors said Khawaja was involved in helping to develop a cell phone detonator in the foiled bomb plot. At issue was a portion of the Canada Evidence Act, under which the government can refuse to disclose sensitive information to an accused person on national security grounds. The law provides for review of the disputed material by a judge, but only at a closed-door hearing the defendant cannot attend. Khawaja's lawyer, Lawrence Greenspon, had argued that the secrecy provisions violated guarantees of fundamental justice and fair trial under the Charter of Rights.