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Canadian Muslim Group Fined $550,000 Over “Terror Funding”

The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) said it has suspended the Islamic Society of North America-Canada (ISNA-Canada) for a year from September 12 and ordered the Mississauga-based charity to pay a $550,000 penalty, Global News reported.

TORONTO – A major Canadian Islamic organisation has been suspended and fined by regulators following an audit that raised concerns it had “provided resources” to groups with links to the Hizbul Mujahideen terror group, according to a media report on Monday.

 

The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) said it has suspended the Islamic Society of North America-Canada (ISNA-Canada) for a year from September 12 and ordered the Mississauga-based charity to pay a $550,000 penalty, Global News reported.

 

Government auditors alleged ISNA-Canada “failed to conduct any meaningful due diligence” when it transferred $136,000 to Kashmir. The audit was done in 2011 and covered 2007-09. CRA sanctioned the charity on September 5.

 

CRA audit documents obtained by Global News alleged that ISNA-Canada “gifted” $90,000 to the Relief Organization for Kashmiri Muslims (ROKM). CRA has previously described ROKM as the “charitable arm” of Jamaat-e-Islami, a Pakistani group whose armed wing, Hizbul Mujahideen, is listed as a terror group in Europe and the US.

 

The audit documents showed ISNA-Canada gave an additional $46,000 to the Kashmiri Relief Fund of Canada, which CRA has previously alleged had fundraised for ROKM.

 

“Providing resources to organisations operating in support of a political purpose, including the achievement of nationhood or political autonomy, are not recognised at law as charitable,” CRA said.

 

By acting as a “conduit” for other organisations, ISNA-Canada “may have, knowingly or unknowingly, provided the benefits of its status as a registered charity to support the efforts of a political party and its armed wing”, CRA said.

 

The Charities Directorate did not revoke ISNA-Canada’s charity status but the group was required to enter a compliance agreement whereby it must “cease its overseas operations”.

 

ISNA Islamic Services of Canada was stripped of its charitable status last year after auditors raised concerns about possible funding of Hizbul Mujahideen. ISNA Development Foundation was stripped of its charity status in 2013 over similar concerns and the Canadian Islamic Trust Foundation’s charity status was also revoked.

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