Monday, March 2, 2015


Another example of how Canadian injustice helps criminals and hurts crime victims. -     Phyllis Carter -
A Nova Scotia pedophile who evaded justice in Canada and travelled to Asia while Canadian authorities tripped over red tape has been sentenced to seven years in prison in Nepal, some 45 years after his first known indecent acts.
Ernest Fenwick MacIntosh, a 71-year-old former Cape Breton businessman, was found guilty Sunday of sexually assaulting a nine-year-old Nepalese boy. Justice Tek Narayan Kunwar imposed the seven-year sentence in court in Lalitpur, near Kathmandu, according to local media reports.
Mr. MacIntosh was convicted in Nova Scotia in 2010 and 2011 of sexual assaults on young boys that took place in the 1970s in Cape Breton, but those convictions were overturned because of procedural delays that added up to 15 years. The case triggered justice-system reviews in Nova Scotia and Ottawa, where authorities shared blame, apologized to victims and promised reforms to make sure it wouldn't happen again.
Bob Martin, one of six men whose testimony led to the Nova Scotia convictions, applauded Nepalese officials for doing in 49 days what Canadian officials failed to do in 15 years. "They brought a serial child predator to justice," said Mr. Martin, now 57, who was abused in the mid-1970s. "It's deplorable, even embarrassing, that a foreign country has to make up for the inadequacies of the Canadian justice system."
A Nepalese court statement released Sunday after the conviction said Mr. MacIntosh repeatedly molested a boy, who has only one arm and was living in an orphanage, after offering him gifts and money and promising to pay for a prosthetic arm.
"He has been proven guilty and sentenced to seven years in jail … the boy's testimony and results of a polygraph test provided strong evidence against him," court spokesman Kaushaleshwor Gyawali said.
With the help of a Halifax benefactor, Mr. Martin said he had timelines and court documents translated into Nepali and sent to Justice officials in Kathmandu to make sure prosecutors were aware Mr. MacIntosh "was no ordinary sex tourist." Mr. MacIntosh had two sexual assault convictions in Canada in the 1980s.
Mr. Martin, who went to court last fall to have a publication ban on his name lifted, says new Canadian victims have approached him over the years, and at least two have recently gone to the RCMP to complain.
The saga began in 1995, when a former Cape Bretoner went to an RCMP detachment in British Columbia to complain he was molested by Mr. MacIntosh in the 1970s, when Mr. MacIntosh was a businessman in Port Hawkesbury, N.S. Two charges were laid against Mr. MacIntosh later that year.
The investigation would take nearly six years to complete. Preparing the case for extradition added six more years. Finally, court delays tacked on nearly three years before Mr. MacIntosh was convicted and sentenced to two years in prison.
The Nova Scotia Court of Appeal quashed all the convictions because of the delays, a decision upheld in 2013 by the Supreme Court of Canada. Reports from the Nova Scotia Attorney-General and the federal Justice Department that year outlined a litany of mistakes and confusion that dragged out the case.
Right from the start, the <QL>RCMP had trouble finding Mr. MacIntosh, who had gone to India before the charges were laid. A total of nine people would step forward with allegations (three would be dismissed), dragging out the investigation that had to be complete before extradition could even begin.
The justice reports detailed how the prosecutions office in Port Hawkesbury was swamped, the lead RCMP investigator was transferred out of province and communication problems plagued the three-way dialogue between provincial prosecutors, federal justice officials and the RCMP.
The Justice Department sent the file to its international assistance group where the assigned lawyer "did not appreciate its urgent nature." The file didn't budge for 11 months.
Early on, the RCMP asked Ottawa to take away Mr. MacIntosh's passport to help force him home. Instead, steps to revoke his passport were abandoned when Mr. MacIntosh put up resistance. He was even allowed to renew his passport twice at Canada's mission in New Delhi, once in 1997 and again in 2002, despite red flags that were supposed to prevent renewal.
"If we had known then what we know now, we would have pursued revocation more aggressively in 1997 and 1998," the federal justice report said. The passport renewal in 2002 was the result of "human error," it added.
Meanwhile, a 2007 report in the Toronto Star said Mr. MacIntosh was banned from two Indian orphanages over allegations of child sexual abuse.
There were also local reports Mr. MacIntosh had actually visited Canada between the first laying of charges in 1995 and his extradition in 2007. The government was never able to establish if he did travel to Canada, adding to "concerns about the integrity of government systems," the federal report said.
Globe and Mail
With a report from Agence France-Presse

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