Cambridge man who helped Gadhafi son escape may be deported
Published Monday, January 21, 2013 5:02PM EST
Last Updated Monday, January 21, 2013 7:12PM EST
A Cambridge resident who helped one of Moammar Gadhafi’s sons escape Libya in 2011 may be deported back to his native Australia.
Gary Peters is accused of breaking international law by assisting the Gadhafi family during the Libyan uprising, including helping Al-Saadi Gadhafi, the dictator’s third son, flee the country and settle in Niger.
In an interview with CTV, Peters maintains he did nothing wrong.
“There was a lot of activity in Tripoli at that time. It was too dangerous for him to stay,” he says.
But the Canada Border Services Agency argues that no matter how dangerous it was for Al-Saadi Gadhafi to remain in Libya, Peters’ assistance makes him an international criminal.
CBSA alleges Peters provided security services to the Gadhafis for six years and was “complicit in war crimes and people smuggling.”
Peters disagrees, saying that though he met many high-ranking Libyans, he only worked for Al-Saadi Gadhafi, whom he never saw order any killings or tortures.
“He’s not that kind of person,” says Peters.
“He doesn't like violence. He doesn’t like guns. He was appalled at what happened during the uprising of 2011. He spoke out against it right from the beginning.”
Al-Saadi Gadhafi has reportedly been living in Niger ever since Peters helped him cross the border.
Interpol issued a warrant for his arrest in September 2011 over allegations he used force and intimidation as head of Libya’s soccer federation.
Peters says if he didn’t help Gadhafi leave the country, the 39-year-old would have been killed.
“I don’t believe I’ve done anything wrong,” he says.
“You can’t leave anybody in that kind of situation, no matter who it is. I just did the right thing.”
The Immigration and Refugee Board is expected to issue a decision later this month. If found guilty, Peters could be deported to Australia.