Top American lawyer vouches for authenticity of Aga Khan’s affidavit

Daniel Gleason.

By Salim Jiwa

VANCOUVER – One of America’s top lawyers, Daniel J. Gleason, has vouched for the notarized affidavit of the Aga Khan in which he stated he had filed a lawsuit in the Federal Court of Canada against two men for breach of copyright.


Gleason, voted the best lawyer in the U.S. for over ten years and voted vice-chair of the Massachusetts State Committee for the American College of Trial Lawyers, says he was present when the Aga Khan signed a notarized declaration affirming he is the plaintiff in the case against Toronto lawyer Alnaz Jiwa and Montreal-Nairobi resident Nagib Tajdin.

Jiwa and Tajdin had labelled the signature of the Aga Khan on the notarized statement as a fake. On a website run by one of them, the defendants had placed a large red seal calling the signature a fraud.

Now, Gleason, a Harvard educated lawyer acclaimed by his peers as a “super lawyer” for several years, has submitted an affidavit in the Canadian Federal Court to debunk the claim by the defendants that the Aga Khan did not sign the affidavit in which he asked the defendants to stop violating his copyright. Gleason specializes in civil litigation including patent and copyright disputes.

Both defendants have been clamouring for a person audience with the spiritual leader of the Ismaili community who is also a global figure involved in creating hundreds of educational, health and humanitarian institutions.

However, the Aga Khan stated in an earlier affidavit he felt a meeting was inappropriate but left the door open to communicate with the defendants by mail.

It is thought that the continued threat of a lawsuit if they don’t get to meet with him is viewed as coercive.

Also pouring cold water on the defendants’ claim that the notarized statement is a fake is the notary public in whose presence the Aga Khan signed the affidavit. Jennifer A Coleman has also submitted an affidavit that was filed in Federal Court on Monday.

In his statement, Gleason describes in vivid detail his meeting with the Aga Khan in his suite in Boston. Present was the Aga Khan, his personal secretary and the notary public.

Brian Gray - Aga Khan's lawyer.

Asked about the submission of fresh documents, the Aga Khan’s lawyer, Brian Gray, said in an interview the Aga Khan’s side has filed a motion for a summary judgment to be heard around July 19 and have requested the Federal Court to hear a similar motion by the defence on the same date.

“We are asking for a summary judgment and we are hoping it can be heard on the same day – which would be July 19,” Gray said in an interview.

Alnaz Jiwa - defendant, wants to meet Aga Khan.

The defendants claim they obtained implied consent for the publication of a book that had already been printed during a brief religious ceremony in Montreal in 1992. However, it now appears there was no discussion about printing any book containing articles written by the Aga Khan, according to an affidavit filed by a Montreal man that the defendants have submitted.

The book was contemporary only to 1992. The defendants published a fresh book containing the Aga Khan’s communications to his followers around 2009 and sent a copy to the Aga Khan.

Immediately, the Aga Khan sent the defendants a letter to stop the publication along with a second communication to again making the same request. The defendants claimed the signature on the letter was faked. Then, the defendants also claimed that the Aga Khan was not the one who filed the lawsuit but that it was filed by a usurper or an impostor.

In answer to that, the Aga Khan swore an affirmation in Boston stating he had authorized the lawsuit, that he was the plaintiff and that he was the one who sent communications to the two defendants. The Aga Khan stated he deliberately wrote a few lines in his own handwriting to make sure the two men understood that he wrote the letter.

Also filed in court on Monday afternoon was a sworn affidavit of Dr. Shafik Sachedina who is head of Ismaili community institutions at the Aga Khan’s secretariat at Aiglemont in France. In his affidavit, Dr. Sachedina vouches for the fact that he has carried out instructions given to him by the Aga Khan in dealing with aspects of the case.

In this capacity, Dr Sachedina coordinates the Aga Khan’s plans for the AKDN humanitarian network and Ismaili institutions.

Aziz Bhaloo, former head of the Ismaili National Council for Canada and another prominent Ismaili, state in an affidavit filed in court that they met with defendant Nagib Tajdin to request that he stop the publications of books containing the writings of the Aga Khan. The meeting took place in the 90s following the publication of the first book.

Documents: His Highness Prince Karim Aga Khan v. Nagib Tajdin, Alnaz Jiwa et al.

Plaintiff’s letter dated June 28, 2010 – Motion schedule Pg. 1
Plaintiff’s letter dated Jume 28, 2010 – Motion schedule Pg. 2

Affidavit of Daniel J. Gleason, Esq. Pg. 1
Affidavit of Daniel J. Gleason, Esq. Pg. 2

Affidavit of Jennifer A. Colman Pg. 1
Affidavit of Jennifer A. Colman Pg. 2

Message of Prince Amyn to Nagib

Imam’s letter to Nagib dated February 18, 2010 Pg.1
Imam’s letter to Nagib dated February 18, 2010 Pg.2

Affidavit of Aziz M. Bhaloo Pg. 1
Affidavit of Aziz M. Bhaloo Pg. 2
Affidavit of Aziz M. Bhaloo Pg. 3

Plaintiff’s Notice of Motion Pg 1
Plaintiff’s Notice of Motion Pg 2
Plaintiff’s Notice of Motion Pg 3
Plaintiff’s Notice of Motion Pg 4
Plaintiff’s Notice of Motion Pg 5
Plaintiff’s Notice of Motion Pg 6

Sachedina Affidavit Pg. 1
Sachedina Affidavit Pg. 2
Sachedina Affidavit Pg. 3
Sachedina Affidavit Pg. 4
Sachedina Affidavit Pg. 5
Sachedina Affidavit Pg. 6
Sachedina Affidavit Pg. 7
Sachedina Affidavit Pg. 8
Sachedina Affidavit Pg. 9
Sachedina Affidavit Pg. 10

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Posted by on Jun 28 2010. Filed under EDITOR'S CHOICE, More News, Top Stories. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

826 Comments for “Top American lawyer vouches for authenticity of Aga Khan’s affidavit”

  1. Our latest story about how the two defendants have rejected a private meeting with the Aga Khan in favour of cross-examining him under oath has now been published. Please shift your comments to that story. Comments on this story here are now closed.

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