Mubin Shaikh

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Mubin Shaikh
Mubin Shaikh - 2015 (21701239792) (cropped).jpg
Shaikh in 2015
Born (1975-09-29) September 29, 1975 (age 42)
Toronto, Ontario

Mubin Shaikh is a former security intelligence and counter terrorism operative and now an expert with experience in radicalization, deradicalization, countering violent extremism (CVE), and national security and counter-terrorism. Based on his history and former involvement, he has testified as an expert for the United Nations Security Council[1], the United States Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs[2] with NATO, the National Counterterrorism Center, and Special Operations Command Central and he is an external expert with the Joint Staff SMA for CENTCOM Command Staff.[3]

He has also appeared on media outlets such as CNN, CBC, ABC, and NBC on matters related to extremism and terrorism.


Shaikh's operational experience originates with his role as an undercover counter-terrorism operative for the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) in the 2006 Toronto terrorism case. He was active with CSIS for some years domestically, but the details of his activities are subject to national security restrictions and so cannot be disclosed to the public. Shaikh moved on to become a Royal Canadian Mounted Police agent with the Integrated National Security Enforcement Teams when one of the Service investigations uncovered a group of young Muslim men, of various ethnic backgrounds, intending to engage in criminal offences regarding terrorism.

It is clear from court evidence that the plot was well underway before CSIS had assigned Shaikh to the investigation. The investigation was formally moved from CSIS to the RCMP after Shaikh had verified the information that had been disclosed to him by the subjects of the investigation. After several public hearings (youth preliminary hearings in January 2007, adult preliminary hearings in September 2007, and a youth trial by judge in 2008) and despite allegations of entrapment, Judge John Sproat, in March 2009, dismissed claims of entrapment and wrote in his ruling that Shakih was cleared of any wrongdoing and "displayed a great number of the hallmarks of a truthful and credible witness" and that the group's plans were already underway prior to Shaikh's involvement and so could not have been the result of the state abusing its authority.

In total, seven people had charges "stayed" because of the sympathetic testimony of Shaikh. A prosecutor in the case even accused Shaikh of lying to protect the youth accused. The judge, in his ruling, once again sided with Shaikh.[4] At the end of the adult trial by jury of the remaining three persons in June 2010, after several others had pleaded guilty, a comprehensive presentation of previously-restricted information including court exhibits entered as evidence, complete with transcripts and video, was put forward by Isabel Teotonio of the Toronto Star.[5] Zakaria Amara wrote a letter of apology[6] and Faheem Ahmad gave an interview on his radicalization.[7] He also had discussions with Abu Huzaifa al-Kanadi.[8]

Shaikh is a co-author of the book Undercover Jihadi.


Shaikh has a Master of Policing, Intelligence, and Counter-Terrorism from Macquarie University.

Personal life[edit]

Shaikh was born at St. Michael's Hospital in Toronto. He attended Quran school as a child as well as public school and although at age 14, he joined the Royal Canadian Army Cadets attaining the rank of Cadet Warrant Officer, an acute identity crisis because of a house party led him to Pakistan, where a chance encounter with the Taliban would propel him into extremism. The 9/11 attacks made him reconsider his views and he then spent 2 years in Syria augmenting previous private study of Islamic Studies where he would go through a period of full deradicalization, rejecting extremism and terrorism as an anathema to Islam. He then returned to Canada and began his national security operations work.

Shaikh is a Sunni Sufi Muslim.


External links[edit]