Tamara Lich and Chris Barber are on trial this month for their part in organizing the Freedom Convoy. Their charges relate primarily to Mischief of over $5000 – defined as “the wilful destruction of property, making it dangerous or useless to others”. There was virtually no destruction of property that was reported during these protests, however they did make the streets of downtown Ottawa “useless” for some residents for a period of three weeks. As such, it is almost certain that Lich and Barber will be convicted on some of these charges. The main question to be determined is the length of sentence, and the amount of fines.
Over the last number of years, we have seen protesters destroy up to 80 churches, many valuable statues and monuments, pipelines destroyed, workers attacked, and railways blocked. All of these protests involve some form of Mischief, and many involved much more serious destruction of property or economic damage than we saw with the Freedom Convoy in Ottawa. Many of those who were involved in Mischief during these protests were videoed and are well known to the police and prosecutors, yet almost none have been brought to trial for similar charges as Lich and Barber.
This is clearly a double standard, and does not adhere to section 15(1) of our constitution, which states that all people are to be treated equally.
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