Canadian Refugee Judge gets 18 Months

As reported by 680 News, former immigration judge and city councilor Steve Ellis has been sentenced to 18 months in prison.

Ellis was found guilty of breach of trust and bribery in April and was charged in 2006 after he propositioned a South Korean refugee claimant for sex, in exchange for an approval.The meeting with the Korean claimant was recorded who took the matter to police.

In a statement in court Friday, Ellis apologized and said he’s ashamed.

At his sentencing hearing, Ellis’ psychiatrist testified that the 50-year-old suffered from a bipolar disorder, which leads to errors in judgement. The judge said Ellis breached the trust placed in him and that his actions undermine the public’s confidence in the immigration system.

This illustrates how far we have come in terms of protecting the rights of refugee claimants. However, it is ironic that the Tory’s with their new refugee reforms,  are seemingly rolling back the protections afforded to claimants fleeing persecution overseas. Well, at least claimants can know that once they reach our shores, their rights are respected at least until a final decision is made on their claims.

Michael Niren

About Michael Niren

Michael is a graduate of Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto. He is a member of the Law Society of Upper Canada, the Canadian Bar Association’s Citizenship and Immigration Section and the Associate Member of the American Bar Association. Read more

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