Detained at Pearson airport: Man to get hearing into human-rights complaint over CBSA detention
A man who was detained for seven hours in a CBSA interview room at Pearson airport will be taken to court to answer a human-rights complaint.
Paulo Vizzini, a father-of-two, was travelling from Portugal to the UK when he was held on Saturday for more than eight hours by Canada Border Services Agency staff.
He was asked to sit in handcuffs, his hands behind his back and was photographed several times as he sat in detention.
Mr Vizzini’s legal team had been fighting to make his case public and have it heard in court.
He has now been told he will face a court hearing to answer the complaint and will be freed in order for him to return home.
During the long wait in detention at the Toronto airport, he wrote a letter from his phone, sent to The Canadian Press (CP), detailing why he was being held for so long and what his rights were being violated.
Mr Vizzini, who did not have a lawyer, was detained because he had been carrying a small amount of drugs in his carryon bag of two bags that weighed 7.5 kilograms.
It is the second time he has been held in CBSA detention.
When he was released from the airport, he was told he could go to his usual place of employment in London, where he was working as a waiter.
He has since reported that he did not get paid or received any benefits while being detained.
In a blog post, he wrote: “I was detained due to a complaint that I was carrying a little more than a gram of marijuana on my airplane to the UK and I was going to be detained for at least 8hours”.
“The only thing that they saw was a little bit of crack and a little bit of marijuana. I was detained for the duration.”
On his Twitter account, he wrote that he was stopped and told to sit in the interview room for over eight hours. He was questioned and photographed several times.
Mr Vizzini, who was visiting his family in Portugal, said he was denied the right to phone his lawyer with instructions, an opportunity to contact his family and contact the consulate in Portugal.
He was denied information about his son’s medical condition and about the date of a