Freedom Convoy organizer Tamara Rich is a “political prisoner” targeted by the federal government for holding political views contrary to those of the government, according to Conservative leader candidate and MP Leslin. Lewis says
“[T]His answer is yes. Tamara meets the definition of a political prisoner. She was imprisoned for her political beliefs and her actions,” Lewis said. e-mail to her supporters on August 11th.
“The liberal tendency to weaponize institutions to silence political opponents is undermining the very pillars that hold society together.”
Rich was released late last month after being arrested a second time on June 27 for allegedly violating his bail conditions. Metti’s grandmother, 49, with no criminal record, spent 49 days in prison awaiting trial on charges stemming from her role as one of the key organizers of the Freedom Convoy.
Lewis, a lawyer who has followed Rich’s case, criticized how the Canadian legal system has been “eroded” by “political retaliation.”
“of previous letteroutlined the fact that the first judge to detain Tamara was a former Liberal Party candidate, and the barrister who prosecuted Tamara had donated more than $17,000 to the Liberal Party since 2013.
Rich was first arrested on February 17.
After being initially denied bail, he was released in March on several terms, including being unable to contact fellow organizers of the convoy.
With his second arrest on June 27, Rich spent nearly 30 days in prison. Then, on June 16, she was awarded her 2022 George Her Jonas Freedom Award, at her event hosted by the Justice Center for Constitutional Freedom, where she confirmed her bail conditions. The Royal Prosecutor claimed that he had violated .
As proof, The Crown presented a photo of Rich and fellow fleet organizer Tom Marazzo taken at the event, as well as a video briefly showing Rich sitting at the table where Marazzo and the others were sitting. did.
Lich’s defense argued that “less than three seconds of congratulations” after Lich’s speech at the awards dinner did not amount to illegal activity.
Her new bail conditions included not to set foot in Ottawa except to appear in court, stricter rules for communicating with other fleet organizers, and a bond of $37,000. Her initial deposit was her $25,000.
“Tamara Rich is just one example of what happens when governments use their power to control Canadians, incite hatred and division, and infest independent institutions with political operatives,” Lewis emailed. said in
“Sadly, in the past two years under COVID-19, [Prime Minister] Justin Trudeau and the Liberal Party have created an environment that undermines our institutions for political gain,” she added.
“In the name of protecting people’s health and safety, we have seen constitutional rights eroded and the judicial system, law enforcement, health care system and media weaponized to silence political opponents. I did.”
checks and balances
The current political climate has “normalized” actions such as prosecuting and reprimanding dissenting doctors, freezing bank accounts, and confiscating protesters’ property. “Publicly humiliated and disclosed the addresses of those who donated to the pro-democracy movement,” Lewis said.
“The only solution to cure the fragility of our democracy is to force citizens of all political stripes to acknowledge the dangerous path we are on, and to let brave leaders hold back. The emergency law requires more than two-thirds of Congress to invoke it,” she said.
During the campaign halt on July 20, Conservative MP Pierre Polivre, who is also running for the Conservative Party’s leadership, has made sure there are no political prisoners in Canada if he becomes a prisoner. When asked what he would do to prevent it, he said he does not control who goes to prison. prime minister.
“As prime minister, I do not control who goes to prison because I am not responsible for making arrests or making sentences. Police and judges have to make those decisions,” Polivre replied. .
He added that if Canada were to become a country where politicians have the power to “choose who goes to prison”, it would be a “catastrophe”.
“I’m not going to tell you … who gets what sentence, because that’s not the prime minister’s job. It’s the police’s job to bring the charges. Let the members pass the verdict and judge,” he said.
Another leadership candidate, Jean Charest, said in a July 14 tweet that if elected he would open a public inquiry into the federal government’s response to the pandemic. He was responding to a commentary by former Reform Party leader Preston Manning, who suggested launching a nationwide investigation into those responsible for Rich’s “unjust persecution.”
“I agree with Preston Manning. Under my leadership, Canada will conduct a National Commission of Inquiry into its response to COVID, including Trudeau’s unprecedented and irresponsible use of the Emergency Act.” Charest said.
Andrew Chen contributed to this report.