Reporter must give RCMP material about accused terrorist: Supreme Court

The Supreme Court of Canada says a reporter must give the RCMP material he gathered for stories about an accused terrorist.

The decision is likely to be seen as a defeat for media that could leave them vulnerable to serving as investigative arms of the police.

In 2014, Vice Media reporter Ben Makuch wrote three articles about the involvement of Farah Shirdon, formerly of Calgary, with the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.

Exchanges between Makuch and Shirdon through a text-messaging service were crucial to the stories.

The RCMP obtained a production order under the Criminal Code that directed Vice Media and Makuch to hand over documents and data related to communications with Shirdon.

Makuch brought an application to quash the production order, but it was dismissed – a decision upheld by the Ontario Court of Appeal and now the Supreme Court.

More coming...