Tom Godfrey, Toronto Sun, Dec. 28, 2005
Ontario cops are outraged that a suspected Tamil gang boss who survived two ambushes — including one in which 16 shots were fired — is being spared deportation from Canada.
Even though he’s deemed a danger to the public, Jothiravi Sittampalam, 35, aka Kannan, founder of the brutal AK Kannan street gang, was granted a new immigration hearing this month following an appeal to the Federal Court of Canada.
The court said a rehabilitated Sittampalam promised to leave the GTA’s second-largest Tamil gang, which he founded in 1992 and is alleged to have broken up while he was in prison.
“There is a sense of frustration out there by police,” said Bob Baltin, of the Police Association of Ontario. “It is near impossible to get criminals deported from Canada.”
Baltin said tougher sentencing for gun crimes could have stopped shooters from obtaining weapons and taking part in two assassination attempts against Sittampalam.
“This suspect hasn’t earned a right to stay in this country,” he said yesterday after learning of the new hearing.
Sittampalam and two colleagues in April 2001 had their Ford Probe riddled with 16 shots fired by gang rivals near Gordon Baker Rd. and the Finch Ave. overpass. They had been followed from Brampton court.
Four months later shots were fired into a rental car he was driving to his Scarborough home.
Immigration officials have been trying to deport the landed immigrant for five years for failure to comply with a court order, heroin trafficking and obstructing a cop. He was among 40 alleged VVT and AK Kannan gangsters arrested in an October 2001 police sweep.
Madame Justice Eleanor Dawson said jail may be the only way for Sittampalam to stay alive.
“People making attempts on his life are determined to kill him,” Dawson said.