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Board orders deportation for trucker who caused horrific Humboldt Broncos crash

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CALGARY — The truck driver who caused the horrific bus crash involving the Humboldt Broncos junior hockey team has been ordered to be deported.

The decision came Friday at an Immigration and Refugee Board hearing in Calgary for Jaskirat Singh Sidhu.

Sidhu’s lawyer had said the decision was a foregone conclusion, as all that’s required to deport Sidhu is proof that he’s not a Canadian citizen and he committed a serious crime.

Sidhu is from India and has permanent resident status in Canada.

The rookie truck driver from Calgary barrelled through a stop sign and into the path of the junior hockey team’s bus at a rural intersection near Tisdale, Sask., in 2018.

Sixteen people on the bus were killed and 13 were injured.

Sidhu pleaded guilty to dangerous driving offences and was sentenced to eight years in prison. He was granted full parole last year.

Sidhu’s lawyer, Michael Greene, said there are still numerous other legal procedures to come, and the deportation process could take months or years.

Two years ago, the Canada Border Services Agency recommended deportation, and Greene went to court to fight it.

In December, the Federal Court dismissed applications from Greene, who had argued border officials didn’t consider Sidhu’s previously clean criminal record and remorse. He wanted the court to order the border agency to conduct a second review.

“This is part of the sadness of the whole process. We’re left with a situation where permanent residents have no rights whatsoever to have their personal circumstances considered,” Greene said.

“Our only mechanism is (that) after he’s ordered deported, we’re going to ask them to give back his (permanent resident) status (based) on humanitarian grounds.

“But in the meantime, he has no status.”

Greene said a pre-removal risk assessment must still be conducted and Sidhu can also ask for a deferral while his request for permanent resident status is considered.

Several family members of those killed in the crash have said they want Sidhu deported.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 24, 2024.

Bill Graveland, The Canadian Press

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