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Florida woman granted asylum in Canada


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The woman was sentenced to 30 years in a florida court for having sex with a 16 year old.

She fled to Canada and claimed refugee status on grounds of fleeing cruel and unusual punishment.

Assylum granted by a Federal court.

Canada's Immigration Minister, Chris Alexander says:

“Our Conservative government reformed Canada’s asylum system in order to protect genuine refugees, individuals truly in need of protection,” Alexander said.

“I find it mind-boggling that individuals from the United States, which has been designated a safe country, precisely because it respects human rights and does not normally produce refugees, think it is acceptable to file asylum claims in Canada. Lucky for them, they have no understanding of what true persecution is, and what it means to be a genuine refugee.”

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/saskatchewan/florida-sex-offender-granted-asylum-in-canada-1.2646061

I find it mind-boggling that the man doesn't realize that a 30 year sentence for what is a non-crime in Canada is more than a little 'unusual' and certainly 'cruel'.

Edited by Peter F
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well, our suspicions are boundless.

What bad precedent? Recognizing a 30 year sentence being inhumane ?

Should length of punishment have anything to do with "cruel"? Its a FLA state prison not Abhu Ghraib and not the death sentence. She signed up for FLA life, I doubt she would've showed up at our door for more punishment if she got off on "stand your ground" statute down there.

Asylum for the level; death sentence for mental illness crime, stoning for adultery.....maybe even federal prison for jaywalking, not for the length.

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The US allows for consecutive sentences (i.e. commit 10 crimes with a penalty of 5 years each and you will do 50 years). This is in addition to 3 strike laws which hand out life sentences for minor crimes.

This means that it is very easy for people convicted of minor crimes in the US to end up with insane sentences.

This also means there are simply too many people in the US that could argue that their sentence is cruel and unusual under Canadian definitions and Canada cannot afford to take them all (especially since most really did commit crimes and we really don't want them).

IOW no matter how compelling an individual case is we should not be accepting this a basis for a refugee claim because the potential consequences for Canada are too harmful.

Edited by TimG
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I'm glad that, in this case, the refugee board made the right decision. A 30 year sentence for consensual sex is ludicrous, and I don't care if the kid was 16 or 13, male or female. We enormously overvalue sex in this culture, where we would essentially take someone's life away for engaging in it outside the bounds of law. If this was nonconsentual I'd think differently, but there was no violence or force here, and the kid was definitely old enough to make his own decision.

Yes, if the 'victim' was younger, I'd feel a jail sentence appropriate, the younger, the longer, but not 30 years.

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I have to say I can't bring myself to be upset with this decision. There are practical reasons for not granting asylum for this type of case, as have been outlined here, but 30 years in jail for a woman who should have been given a good telling off is a bit much.

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Should length of punishment have anything to do with "cruel"? Its a FLA state prison not Abhu Ghraib and not the death sentence. She signed up for FLA life, I doubt she would've showed up at our door for more punishment if she got off on "stand your ground" statute down there.

Asylum for the level; death sentence for mental illness crime, stoning for adultery.....maybe even federal prison for jaywalking, not for the length.

I entirely disagree. Maybe it's not Abu Ghraib, on the other hand, maybe it's worse. And a 30 year sentence for consentual sex is ludicrous. As noted, this would not even be a crime in Canada.

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It's an interesting case.

On one hand, Canada usually turns down these refugee claims because the US is a country where people of crimes have access to due process of law. Deserters from the US military, for example, have tried many times to get refugee status but are almost always denied.

She broke a law, went through the legal system, a sentence was imposed.

The sentence is ridiculous of course, but it can be argued that she also has recourse to due process during an appeal process that is available to anybody in the US.

Canada and US have had some battles over extradition. It will be interesting to see if the US even tries to extradite given the nature of the 'crime'. She isn't exactly Charles Ng after all.

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"a 30 year sentence for consentual sex is ludicrous. As noted, this would not even be a crime in Canada."

actually it is a sentence for statutory rape.

That's also a crime in Canada, but the defitnions of what constitutes the crime differ

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Bad precedent. This kind of nutbar sentence is so common in Florida and some other states we will be over run with this kind of "refugee".

If they're non violent and haven't really harmed anyone then I'm okay with that.

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If they're non violent and haven't really harmed anyone then I'm okay with that.

I'm not. Even though we might not agree with their sentences, they have commited crimes. We don't let other Americans in who have criminal records, a person with a 20 yr old DUI will get turned back.

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I'm glad that, in this case, the refugee board made the right decision. A 30 year sentence for consensual sex is ludicrous, and I don't care if the kid was 16 or 13, male or female. We enormously overvalue sex in this culture, where we would essentially take someone's life away for engaging in it outside the bounds of law. If this was nonconsentual I'd think differently, but there was no violence or force here, and the kid was definitely old enough to make his own decision.

Yes, if the 'victim' was younger, I'd feel a jail sentence appropriate, the younger, the longer, but not 30 years.

More to the point 16 is consent in many nations including Canada (with some restrictions). The US is one of only a few that maintains 18 as the age of consent.
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Also, people should look at the history of age of consent laws. It used to be that age of consent was 13 years old. It was raised to 16 in the UK in the late 19th century to combat child prostitution. So really the law is meant to stop child prostitutes. It's not meant to destroy the lives of someone who has a consensual relationship with someone that is deemed mature enough to operate a potentially deadly motor vehicle and is less than 2 years away from dying for their country or choosing the next president. 30 years, practically the rest of their life, in jail? Come on. This is Victorian Puritanism run amock. Even they wouldn't have punished someone so harshly had they married first.

Edited by cybercoma
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More to the point 16 is consent in many nations including Canada (with some restrictions). The US is one of only a few that maintains 18 as the age of consent.

Misleading....the age of consent varies by state in the U.S., the majority of which are below 18 years. At least a dozen or more nations have consent ages at 18.

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This is great news for statutory rapists in the U.S., or at least the female rapists. As opined above, I suspect that gushing support for this decision would change if genders were reversed.

Funny, if she were in any of the blue states on this map it would have been legal.

500px-Age_of_Consent_-_North_America.svg

Misleading....the age of consent varies by state in the U.S., the majority of which are below 18 years. At least a dozen or more nations have consent ages at 18.

The majority? Try again. Only the green ones are 18.

Edited by cybercoma
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Hell I'm surprised Florida didn't fry her before she was able to get out. They're trying desperately to catch up to Texas on that score. I was allowed to fly a plane in Canada when I was 16, and I was also having sex, and with an older woman tsk tsk. She was 17. Should she be in jail?

Texas's age of consent law is even less strict than Florida.

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I entirely disagree. Maybe it's not Abu Ghraib, on the other hand, maybe it's worse. And a 30 year sentence for consentual sex is ludicrous. As noted, this would not even be a crime in Canada.

Agreed Argus!

WWWTT

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This is great news for statutory rapists in the U.S., or at least the female rapists. As opined above, I suspect that gushing support for this decision would change if genders were reversed.

Fear mongering!

WWWTT

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