November, 26 2010
A member of the so-called Toronto 18, who tried to raise funds for an al-Qaeda-inspired homegrown cell, rapped about the “predicaments of my present times” before being sentenced in a Brampton court 26 November 2010 to 10 years. Steven Chand, 29, who was a trainer at a camp to weed out potential recruits and who helped scout a safehouse, appeared relaxed in the prisoner’s box as Justice Fletcher Dawson delivered his ruling. The Scarborough man, who has been behind bars since his arrest in June 2006, was given slightly more than two-for-one credit of time served, which means he will serve an additional seven months and 10 days.
He faced a maximum term of life imprisonment for the fraud charge and up to 10 years for participating in the terror cell – with sentences to run consecutively – but the Crown and defence had agreed, early in the process, that an eight-year sentence would be sufficient. “Mr. Chand was ideologically committed to the cause… He was serious,” said Dawson, who also recommended Chand seek de-radicalization counseling. Before the ruling Chand read from a prepared statement asking the judge to sentence him to time served. He ended with a poem, or rhyming lyrics, which he delivered as a rap.