Five suspected former members of Iranian regime found in Canada, deportation proceedings launched

The five face removal from Canada under sanctions put in place in 2022, banning tens of thousands of Iranian officials, including those from the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC).

Five suspected former members of Iranian regime found in Canada, deportation proceedings launched
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Immigration officials have started deportation proceedings against five suspected former members of the Iranian regime discovered in Canada, according to newly released figures.

According to the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA), the five held senior positions in Iran's government, and the agency has requested the Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB) commence hearings.

The five face removal from Canada under sanctions put in place in 2022, banning tens of thousands of Iranian officials, including those from the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC).

The sanctions were put in place after Iran's morality police arrested a woman who showed her hair in public and killed her while she was in custody.

Deportation hearings will be public unless one of the individuals has an ongoing refugee claim.

Canada severed diplomatic relations with Iran in 2012. In 2020, the IRGC shot down a passenger plane departing Tehran airport, resulting in the deaths of 55 Canadian citizens and 30 permanent residents.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau faced backlash after a meeting shortly after the tragedy, wherein he and Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif shook hands.

Iran has refused to hand over the black boxes recovered from the crash site or cooperate in the investigation.

The IRGC also arms, funds, and trains Hamas, the terrorist group responsible for killing 1,200 Israelis and kidnapping over 200 on October 7. More recently, Iran has provided drones to Russia for attacks on Ukraine.

Canada designated Iran as “a regime that has engaged in terrorism and systematic and gross human rights violations” in November 2022, making holding senior posts in the the Islamic republic inadmissible to Canada.

The Canadian government recently placed the IRGC on its list of terrorist entities.

Iran is also among the countries the Canadian government claims has engaged in foreign interference targeting dissidents and critics. Iranian-Canadians have long complained about Iranian regime officials entering Canada.

According to figures released on June 3, the CBSA has launched 87 investigations into suspected senior Iranian regime members living in the country.

The CBSA reported that 43 investigations were closed because the individuals in question were either not in Canada or were deemed not to be senior Iranian officials.

So far, immigration officials have identified 14 “well-founded” cases of senior regime members, seven of which have now been sent to the IRB for hearings. Apart from the two cases that have been completed, five are now listed as “ongoing.”

The IRB did not comment on any of the information about the cases and did not say why the cases were proceeding in secrecy.

“As a matter of practice, the IRB does not provide information on any cases that are not public,” said spokesperson Anna Pape to Global News.

“We can confirm that, at this time, the IRB has received a total of two such cases which proceeded in public: Mr. Iranmanesh and Mr. Samani.”

“We have no other cases related to the Iran regime … that are proceeding in public at this time, and cannot comment on whether or not we have any non-public ones.”

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