Thursday, December 09, 2004

Authorities give US prisoner detailed personal information on Albertans

Here's a head-scratcher. A prisoner is a US jail, facing deportation to Canada, was given highly sensitive information about a number of Albertans so he could apparently prepare to fight the extradition order. The prisoner may be accused of a savage beating, but at least he knows that he probably should have the info:

Privacy shocker:

"Skinhead Daniel Sims has in his U.S. jail cell the SIN numbers of staff of the Edmonton law firm that sued him after he beat former broadcaster Keith Rutherford so badly he lost an eye. The SIN numbers - including that of high-profile Edmonton lawyer Tom Engel - are included in a 1,000-page immigration file Sims obtained this week from American authorities as he battles deportation back to Canada.

Sims said the documents include financial information such as total income, taxes paid and Canada Pension Plan contributions made by Engel and his wife in 2001 - two years after Rutherford's lawsuit was concluded.

'I got this from the U.S. Attorney's office but because the file is so big they didn't notice,' said Sims, 33, from his Kern County jail cell in Bakersfield, California.

'As far as me and Tom Engel, there's no way I should have this. I don't really want it.' ...."

The Information and Privacy Commissioner of Alberta says he'll investigate if he receives a complaint.

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