The ruse is up

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Interesting and most welcome turn of events from Belgium today. 

I received the news via a Belgian blog operated by Joris van der Aa  Click on Translate for the google version in English.

As I say, welcome news! 

So, here is my understanding ….

Father Eric Dejaeger omi was arrested in Belgium on Monday.  He is being held in the detention centre for illegal immigrants in Bruges.  He had five days to file an appeal.  He has already filed an appeal.  

Dejaeger’s lawyer is apparently a well known human rights lawyer in Belgium.  He defends terrorists, and of course, his is currently defending Dejaeger.  What can I say? 

I don’t know if Dejaeger is footing this particular legal bill, or if his Oblate confreres on either side of the Atlantic  are footing the bill?  I don’t know if there is such a thing as legal aid in Belgium, and if yes, if Dejaeger would qualify? 

No matter, Dejaeger is in a detention centre for illegal immigrants in Bruge.  He has a lawyer. He is appealing. 

Who don’t know where this will go or how long it might take, but, it is the end of the game for Dejaeger.. 

In the past when confronted by law enforcements officials Dejaeger allegedly would claim ‘I’m a Belgian national – you can’t detain me.’  It worked.  Those days have. I hope, thankfully and finally come to and end.  Dejaeger, as we heard several months ago, is NOT a Belgian national.  It has taken some time to reach the point reached on Monday, but it has been reached.  Belgian officials have apparently washed their hands of Dejaeger.  He is NOT a Belgian national.  He is an illegal.  The wheels are in motion for deportation.

It seems there may be another story unfolding in the not too distant future as to how Dejaeger has managed to pass himself off as a Belgian national when in fact it was known in at least some Belgian government circles in 1986 that he had taken out Canadian citizenship and had NOT requested dual citizenship and had therefore forfeited his Belgian citizenship.  

No matter, the ruse is up.  It is important to note however that until such time as the ruse was well and truly up Dejaeger, Canadian citizen, convicted clerical molester and fugitive from Canadian justice, milked the system and  reaped the rewards of being thought ofas a Belgian national.  For Dejaeger the fugitive those rewards were great, i.e., (1) Belgium is extremely reluctant to extradite its citizens, and (2)  Belgium will not extradite for crimes which would not be prosecutable in Belgium.  Belgium has a 10-year-statute of limitations on sex abuse crimes, therefore the crimes for which Dejaeger faces charges in Canada would not be prosecutable in Belgium.  

If, as he has apparently been claiming,  Dejaeger were in fact a Belgian citizen, he would probably still be as snug as a bug in the proverbial rug, but, as I said, the ruse is up.  Dejaeger is NOT a Belgian citizen:  he’s a Canadian citizen.  Furthermore, his Canadian passport expired in 1997! 

The free ride is over.  By at least September of 2010 it was officially over  

The hunter truly has become the hunted (Dejaeger translates to English as “the hunter)

How long can he drag out the goodbyes? 

I don’t know.  Will he file a motion that he be released while the appeal proceeds?  I would think he probably will, but that’s only a guess on my part.  If he does, he will be happy to find every trick in the book to buy time.  I therefore  hope and pray he is not allowed out while the appeal proceeds – if that happens we may never see him back here on Canadian soil.

And, meanwhile, what’s happening here in Canada?

Are Canadian officials ready to arrest Dejaeger the moment his feet hit Canadian ground?  If not, why not?

Does the fact that Dejaeger is wanted in Canada enter into the equation in sending him on his way?  Or, are Belgian officials just happy to send this fugitive packing back to Canada and what happens after his arrival is, well,  in the hands of Canadian officials?

What are the logistics of deportation?  Will someone travel with Dejaeger to ensure that he reaches his Canadian destination in tact, whatever that destination may be?  If yes, is it a Belgian or Canadian official who does the honours?  And, who picks?

Who purchases the ticket?  If it is Belgian officials, will they choose the cheapest Canadian destination? Or will they choose a destination of Dejaeger’s choice?   What, for that matter, would be Dejaeger’s choice?  Where does he consider home in Canada?  Baker’s Lake?  Igloolik?  Or, perhaps Winnipeg, Manitoba?

Perhaps he may want a warmer clime – perhaps he might like to settle in with his fellow Oblates in Springhurst, Ottawa, Ontario?   

Has he picked a lawyer  in Canada yet?

This is one messy situation, but at least the ruse is up – and Belgium is ready to wash her hands of Father Eric Dejaeger omi and send him on his merry way. 

On this side of the Atlantic there can be no more dancing around about the secrets and extraditions.  There is no extradition.  That’s over.  Finished.  Now what?  What happens next in Canada?  What will be done to ensure that justice is done?  What will be done to ensure that this con-man doesn’t thumb his nose at his victims again? 

Will it be straight to trial for Dejaeger?  It should be, should it not?  There has been ample time for the Canadian powers that be to prepare. 

Justice must be done.

Many thoughts.  Many questions.  My mind is going a mile a minute. 

Enough for now


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