Canada's federal court ruled yesterday that an American army deserter can be deported to the US, rejecting his request for a stay to the order. The judge said that Robin Long did not provide clear and convincing evidence that he will suffer irreparable harm if he is returned to the US. Long, 25, fled to Canada in 2005 to avoid serving in Iraq.
Officials said Long would probably be sent back to the US today. Long said he sought refuge in Canada because the US army wanted him to participate in what he calls an "illegal war of aggression in Iraq." The judge noted that although the percentage of American military deserters prosecuted has increased since 2002, the vast majority have not been prosecuted let alone jailed. Some 200 deserters are believed to be in Canada.