Judge denies request to freeze ex-Gitmo prisoner's assets

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TORONTO (AP) — A judge in Toronto on Thursday dismissed a request to freeze the assets of a former Guantanamo Bay prisoner who was recently awarded a settlement by the Canadian government.

Omar Khadr last week was reportedly issued an $8 million (CA$10.5 million) settlement by the Canadian government after a court ruled his rights were violated while he was locked up at the American prison for a decade.

Canadian-born Khadr was 15 when he was captured by U.S. troops following a firefight at a suspected al-Qaida compound in Afghanistan that resulted in the death of U.S. Army Sgt. First Class Christopher Speer. Khadr was suspected of throwing the grenade that killed Speer.

Tabitha Speer, the soldier's widow, and Layne Morris, who was blinded in the 2002 firefight, won a default $134.1-million wrongful-death judgment against Khadr two years ago in Utah.

Speer filed a motion in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice earlier this week requesting that the judgment be enforced in Canada and to freeze Khadr's assets until payment of the Utah judgment is sorted out.

The judge said the request to freeze Khadr's assets pending a trial was "extraordinary."

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