IX. The Metzger and Maguire Incidents
In this section, we examine two specific events that were subject to much media speculation, the arrest of Sean Maguire, and the visit to Canada of Tom, and his son John, Metzger. We also deal with some extraneous matters relating to Bristow’s involvement with foreign White Supremacists.
9.1 The Arrest of Sean Maguire
Sean Maguire was a leading American White Supremacist who entered Canada in 1991, and, during a short visit, stayed at Grant Bristow’s home. He was arrested, based on information provided by a CSIS Source, and was subsequently deported.
A Toronto Region Investigator said that he passed information about Sean Maguire’s whereabouts to the Metropolitan Toronto Police Force who then made the “take down”. Prior to the arrest, the Service’s Investigator said he notified the police that there were guns in the trunk of Bristow’s car. Bristow was described as a member of the Heritage Front. The CSIS Investigator was present when the police strategy session took place before the arrest.
Service officers knew, from a source, that Bristow had guns in his car. We learned that Peter Mitrevski was a little surprised to learn that Bristow carried guns in the car. Droege mentioned it was not illegal because he had a Firearms Acquisition Certificate (FAC) and there was no ammo in them.
On September 20, 1991, Sean Maguire and Grant Bristow were travelling in the latter’s car, when they were stopped at gunpoint by the heavily armed Metro Toronto Emergency Task Force. Sean Maguire was arrested on an Immigration warrant. RCMP and Immigration officials were on hand for the arrest, as was a CSIS investigator from Toronto Region. Grant Bristow, when he was stopped, had guns in the trunk of his car. Both men were taken to police station 41.
The operation was a cooperative effort involving CSIS, Immigration, Metro Toronto Police and the RCMP.
In the trunk of Bristow’s car, police found two guns in their cases: a 12 gauge shotgun and a semi-automatic rifle that was inoperative. At the arrest scene, the CSIS Investigator was dressed in civilian clothes and he was well back of the immediate site of the arrest. Bristow was brought back to station 41, and he was berated for having weapons in the car by a police officer at about the time that Wolfgang Droege came to pick him up.
When the police officers discovered the weapons in the trunk of the car, they took Bristow to the police station pending a decision on whether to charge him. They concluded that no criminal or illegal act had taken place:
* the weapons were not transported dangerously (i.e., they were in their cases in a locked trunk);
* they were not altered (sawn-off);
* there was no ammunition; and
* Bristow had valid Firearms Acquisition Certificates.
Also found were a red light (not illegal unless flashing), a flashlight, walkie talkies and a set of handcuffs. Bristow said he was a Loss Prevention Investigator and this was his equipment.
Droege came to pick Bristow up while Maguire was still being processed by a Detective. A police officer strongly cautioned Bristow about his having guns and being a white supremacist, while at the same time the Metro Toronto Police were searching through Bristow’s car for more weapons or other contraband.
The Metropolitan Toronto Police Force (MTPF) pointed out that Immigration had served the police with a warrant for Maguire’s arrest and this was the sole basis for the arrest. That is, the arrest did not result from an MTPF investigation and, save for the weapons in Bristow’s car, there were no grounds upon which to hold him.
The incident report was thin because the MTPF only acted on an Immigration warrant. Bristow was not mentioned because he was not targeted by the warrant and he did not commit any illegal act.
According to Bristow, he owned two firearms, a shotgun which was operable and an inoperable semi-automatic rifle. He acquired these from Glengarry Transport after an investigation, and he also acquired Firearms Acquisition Certificates. He had the guns in the trunk because he didn’t want them in the house when Maguire was visiting. CSIS was aware that Bristow had the guns, and knew how he had come to possess them.
A former Immigration officer who was on the scene, Harold Musetescu, informed SIRC that there was a “heated discussion” at station 41 about charging Grant Bristow for “dangerous weaponsn and “unsafe storage of firearms”. Musetescu said that the police thought that they had “got two birds with one stone”, and were keen to lay charges. Musetescu alleged that Bristow was not charged because of CSIS intervention.
The Review Committee did not find any corroboration for the former Immigration Officer’s statements. According to the Metropolitan Toronto Police, no one, including the police, argued about whether to let Bristow go. If there had been a criminal offence, the police would have charged Bristow but, as previously stated, nothing illegal had been found.
The former Immigration officer stated that the Toronto Region Investigator wore a police jacket at the arrest. The CSIS Investigator said that he wore a police jacket only once, at a later arrest of Tom Metzger. At that time, he had it on for only five minutes, at the request of the police, so that he would not be accidentally shot if a fire-fight broke out.
The Toronto Region Investigator added that he thought that the possession of the guns and the arrest were reported in an administrative report. The incident was mentioned briefly in a report but, to the best of our knowledge the report did not mention that guns were involved.
Press Accounts. According to one press account, Sean Maguire was arrested at gunpoint on September 20, 1991. When arrested, officers found in the car a 12 gauge shotgun, and an FN Semi-automatic assault rifle. The driver and owner of the car, not reported, was Grant Bristow.
According to a Canadian Broadcasting Corporation broadcast, “the police were really hot to trot to lay gun charges against Grant. But A1 Treddenick was going around saying, Hey, he’s a friend of ours, which basically means this was our source.” Member of Parliament Tom Wappel put it more succinctly to the Committee:
“I would like to know, has CSIS a source [Who] . . . committed acts contrary to the Criminal Code with the knowledge of CSIS and did CSIS protect the source from charges being laid?”
The Review Committee has found no evidence that any criminal or illegal act was committed by Grant Bristow or a Source of the Service in relation to the arrest of Sean Maguire and, consequently, the media accounts are wrong.
9.2 The Metzqer Visit
In June 1992, Tom Metzger, founder of the White Aryan Resistance (WAR) and his son John, among the most violent white supremacists in the United States, came to Canada at the behest of Wolfgang Droege. Their arrival, arrest and departure was the basis for further allegations following the Toronto Sun’s August 14, 1994 article about a purported CSIS source.
9.2.1 Arrival and Deportation
Canada’s Immigration Branch had a country-wide alert out to stop the Metzgers at the Border. CSIS knew that the Metzgers were coming, but they did not have the travel details. We have learned that three days before the Metzgers’ arrival, CSIS attempted to learn the travel details of Droege’s guest, the Metzgers. Droege, however, was holding the specific details close to his chest. CSIS was aware of discussions about the Metzger’s arrival, but they were not sure of the meeting place. Droege disclosed that someone would be there (to bring them across the border), location unspecified. CSIS commented that it was possible that it was Drew Maynard who was meeting the Metzgers to bring them across the Canada-US border. The time and meeting place were still unknown.
According to CSIS information, the Source played absolutely no role in bringing the Metzgers to Canada in June 1992. The Source knew they were coming up but he had no idea of how they were to come, and he backed off from the project for fear of arrest.
At a debriefing with the handler, the Source was told not to worry about it and not to ask any questions. The handler believed that the Source would have provided details if he had had them concerning the arrival of the Metzgers, and said that he would have been negligent not to ast for that information. He added, however, that he did not want the Source running around asking people what was going on and thus jeopardizing his credibility. He subsequently learned that the Metzgers slipped across the border at Fort Erie, but he never did discover who drove them across the border.
CSIS was unable to uncover the specific travel plans of the Metzgers. The handler had no details on how the Metzgers entered Canada. The Source’s involvement at the time was to tell the handler when the Metzgers were in Canada. Immigration knew that the Metzgers were on their way, and they wanted to find out where and when they were coming, and to find out what they were wearing when they arrived.
The handler was asked if the Source encouraged the Metzgers to come to Canada. He noted that the Source did not encourage Droege to invite big name White Supremacists but he would not have discouraged it either.
A television program alleged that there was a plot by the Metzgers and Heritage Front members to “storm” the Ontario legislature. According to the Source, there was some discussion in the Front about a “storming” and also about the possibility of the Metzgers presenting a petition. He noted, however, that there was little or no planning for either. We have learned that Droege stated that obviously there was no intention of storming the Ontario Legislature. The intent was to cause a confrontation rather than commit an illegal act.
On June 26, 1992, Tom and John Metzger travelled to Toronto in order to speak at a Heritage Front meeting scheduled for June 27. In the early hours of June 28, a joint police- Immigration operation led to the arrest of the Metzgers on charges related to the Immigration Act. An immigration adjudicator ruled, on July 2, 19992[sic], that the Metzgers were guilty of entering Canada intending to break Canada’s hate laws. Ninety minutes after the decision was made, the Metzgers were escorted out of the country.
After their deportation, Bristow returned the Metzgers’ luggage to them in Buffalo, New York at 11:30 in the evening. According to the Source, Bristow spent approximately 15 minutes with them at the bar and then another 15 minutes in the Metzgers’ room. He then drove back to Toronto because he had to work the next morning.
Wolfgang Droege was with the Metzgers when they were arrested on the Immigration warrant. Droege, as was the case with Bristow in the Maguire arrest, was not detained by the police.
When asked whether Bristow had provided any money, the Source indicated that Bristow did not provide money to the Metzgers but he shared with others the extra money required to change the Metzgers’ plane tickets to return to California, after having been deported to Buffalo. No cash was given to the Metzgers 16 CSIS’ records indicate that the tickets were paid for using Droege’s credit card.
9.2.2 Information on Jewish Groups
The Source said that Bristow absolutely did not pass money or personal information on members of the Jewish community to White Supremacists in the United States. Nor did Bristow provide information on any Heritage Front target groups or individuals to Tom Metzger; and, in any case, Tom Metzger had more information on American Jewish groups than the Heritage Front did.
Media allegations were that Bristow visited the Metzgers in California. He told us that he had never been to California, but his wallet, which had been lost or stolen, had ended up there in the 1970s; Bristow learned this when he was detained in Chicago on the return flight from Libya in 1989. Bristow said that Tom Metzger had not asked him for a list of Canadian companies in California, but Gerald Lincoln had sent one down, possibly provided by British Columbia racist, Tony McAleer. Lincoln said he never provided any information to the Metzgers.
The information provided to the media by the Metzgers was fabricated.
We learned that on August 17, 1994 Tom Metzger suggested to Droege that, in the wake of the Dunphy article three days before, it would be the perfect time to leak that that traitor up there was a bag man for some heavy action down in the US. Droege could claim that the guy was carrying money back and forth in order to get the story on the American scene. Droege later told Metzger that the best way would be to transfer the media to Metzger and say Bristow was running across to the US and using Droege’s name to make connections.
We learned that on August 24, 1994 Wolfgang Droege informed Tom Metzger that he would receive a call from the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. Droege told Metzger to tell them (CBC) that Bristow also gave Metzger documents on Jewish groups in Canada and on Jews and on other leftist type organizations and members. Metzger said he knew the story would grow. Droege said that in Canada there are the Canadian Jewish Congress (CJC), the B’nai Brith and the Simon Wiesenthal Centre and Metzger could say that Bristow supplied him with information on these groups and also some of their people. Droege told Metzger to say that he was given information on various leftists, too numerous to mention and that would drive them up the wall. Metzger agreed. Metzger should give him (a CBC reporter) a good story on that or maybe on Bristow giving Metzger money, or about giving Metzger files on people.
Droege concluded by saying that Bristow supplied somebody with information on the Jews. This was a reference to Ernst Zundel.
Later, Tom Metzger told Droege they (CBC) had just contacted him and Metzger ‘gave them a line of-crap a mile long.’ Droege suggested that Metzger should watch the CBC news that evening and asked Metzger, if they really bit. Metzger said it sounded like it, but Metzger had not pushed the money part so much.
The Review Committee has confirmed that the above exchanges took place as described.
9.2.3 Publicity for the Racists
On the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation television program, The Fifth Estate, the announcer noted that:
Metzger had inspired his followers to commit some of the worst Neo-Nazi violence in the U.S. Metzger had spent six months in jail just prior to his planned trip to Toronto. His criminal record and his Neo-Nazi views would be enough to bar him from Canada. Metzger’s plan was to fly to Buffalo from California, then try to drive into Canada on Friday, June 26th.
On the program, Tom Metzger said that Droege and Bristow had invited him to Canada, and that Bristow knew the specifics of the trip, adding that Bristow paid for half the cost of the airline tickets. According to The Fifth Estate, CSIS was to use the eventual arrest to “make themselves heroes in everybody’s eyes”, while “they manufactured the entire incident”. According to Tom Metzger, Bristow had been a CSIS agent in this plan.
Tom Metzger made some additional statements. He alleged that Bristow had subsequently visited him in California in December 1992, bringing with him the names, addresses, and sometimes phone numbers of people “we consider top Zionists”: people to be “targeted”. Bristow had also given them money, “Believe me, it was enough money that the average Canadian taxpayer would be shocked”.
As noted earlier in this section, we saw no evidence to confirm any of Metzger’s statements. What we did find was that Droege and Metzger collaborated on what was to be said in advance of the CBC interview, presumably to discredit Grant Bristow, CSIS and, at a minimum, to instill fear in the Jewish community in Canada.
We have learned that Droege’s agenda was to keep the flame lit and let people know they were out there. Droege said that was why he always sought a lot of media attention and he was making sure there was stuff in the media all the time. He noted that certainly the first thing that needed to be done was that the system needed after CSIS.
9.2.4 Defacing Synagogues
The Heritage Front hotline threatened revenge for the deportation of the Metzgers, and on the following Monday, three synagogues in the Toronto area were defaced. CSIS issued a general Threat Assessment on June 26, 1992 which stated that protests and demonstrations in support of Metzger were likely to occur as a result of his arrest. Sporadic and spontaneous acts of violence were possible. The arrest and deportation were also (expected to attract a great deal of publicity in the Toronto media. The Metro Toronto Police, OPP and RCMP were advised and worked with Immigration on this operation.
According to the CSIS Investigator, he received no specific warning about the vandalism. He added, however, that whenever there is an action by the Government against the far right, a Threat Assessment is put out to warn that isolated acts of vandalism might take place. Regional police forces are aware that after white supremacist rallies, vandalism often takes place at Jewish cemeteries and synagogues.
The Source said that he did not have any specific knowledge of who was responsible. He noted that he may have reported that problems were brewing and that people were upset, but he had no information that the vandalism was going to take place.
We found no indication that CSIS had any foreknowledge of the attacks on the synagogues.
9.2.5 The Former Immigration officer
A former Immigration Officer, Harold Musetescu, alleged that CSIS manipulated the entry into Canada of prominent international white supremacists. This idea was also conveyed by The Fifth Estate program:
“A few days later, the Metzgers were deported across the border. The whole operation looked like a smashing success for CSIS.”
Harold Musetescu has indicated that, for foreign white supremacists, CSIS followed a pattern of allowing the individuals into the country, and then having them arrested and deported to bloat their own (CSIS’) importance. Musetescu suggested that this was intended in the case of Dennis Mahon, but was thwarted by Immigration, and that this was the situation for the first Maguire trip to Canada: “CSIS would withhold information about their arrival from Immigration until after they arrived”.
Based on our review of CSIS files, and our discussions with the principals, including senior officials at Immigration, we found no evidence of CSIS knowingly withholding information from Immigration about the arrival of foreign white supremacists.
In fact, in the Metzger case, Immigration put out an alert to Immigration officers across the country. This action was taken as a result of information provided by CSIS.
1. SIRC interview of the Metropolitan Toronto Police Force. 2. SIRC interview of Toronto Region Investigator. 3. SIRC interview of Toronto Region Investigator. 4. SIRC interview of Bristow. 5. SIRC interview of Harold Musetescu. 6. Saturday Sun, September 21, 1991. 7. The Fifth Estate, October 4, 1994 8. Sub-Committee on National Security, September 13, 1994. 9. The Metzgers were successfully sued for US$13 million for instigating the beating death of an Ethiopian student. 10. Lincoln said Drew Maynard drove the Metzgers to Canada. 11. SIRC interview of Source. 12. SIRC interview of Investigator. 13. SIRC interview of Investigator. 14. SIRC interview of Source. 15. SIRC interview of Source. 16. SIRC interview of Investigator. 17. SIRC interview of Source. 18. SIRC interview of Bristow. The Source handler indicated that the account concerning the request for information involving Canadian companies was confirmed. 19. The Fifth Estate, CBC October 4, 1994. 20. The Fifth Estate, CBC October 4, 1994. 21. SIRC interview of Handler. 22. SIRC interview of Source. 23. SIRC interview with Harold Musetescu.