Friday, June 13, 2014
Denise Harvey was convicted in 2008 of five counts of unlawful sexual activity with a minor, a boy on her son’s baseball team. She is wanted in the U.S., where she is facing a 30-year prison sentence. The Immigration and Refugee Board granted Ms. Harvey protected person status, which allows Harvey to apply for permanent residency. Such rulings involving Americans are rare; only three such claims were granted in 2013.
Harvey sought refugee protection, claiming her 30-year sentence was “cruel and unusual punishment.” The Immigration and Refugee Board initially granted asylum to Harvey, noting that there was no evidence that the sex was not consensual and that the physical relationship was only illegal because of the age difference. The IRB decided Harvey was facing cruel and unusual punishment by Canada’s standards, which was also in disregard, it said, of ‘‘accepted international standards.’’