Lawyer says 'Freedom Convoy' organizer Tamara Lich arrested
The Canadian Press
Published Tuesday, June 28, 2022 5:59AM EDT
Last Updated Tuesday, June 28, 2022 5:59AM EDT
MEDICINE HAT, Alta. -- Tamara Lich, a key organizer of the “Freedom Convoy,” has been arrested in Alberta on a Canada-wide warrant for breach of her court conditions, say Ottawa police.
Lich will be returned to Ottawa to appear in court, police said Tuesday.
Eric Granger, one of Lich's lawyers, confirmed the arrest in an email Monday evening, and added that they were awaiting further details, but the arrest appeared to be related to Lich's bail conditions.
He could not confirm the location of the arrest, but another lawyer who has also represented Lich, Keith Wilson, said on Twitter that the arrest happened Monday in Medicine Hat, Alta., where she lives.
Medicine Hat police did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
A judge initially denied Lich bail after her arrest during the massive protest that overtook downtown Ottawa for more than three weeks in February, but she was released in March after a review of the court decision.
Lich and fellow protest organizer Chris Barber are jointly accused of mischief, obstructing police, counselling others to commit mischief and intimidation.
She was released with a long list of conditions, including a ban from all social media and an order not to “support anything related to the Freedom Convoy.”
“We are not aware of anything that could have prompted this and are surprised by this development given the recent bail review hearing in Ontario where Ms. Lich's positive record for complying with her conditions was one reason why some of her conditions were relaxed at that time,” Granger wrote in an email.
In May, an Ontario judge ruled Lich could remain on bail until her trial after a Crown prosecutor argued she'd violated one of her bail conditions by agreeing to accept an award for her leadership during the Ottawa protest, and should be sent back behind bars to wait for her court appearance.
Ontario Superior Court Justice Kevin Phillips said he made his decision because Lich had followed her bail conditions, her surety supervised her well and she'd already had a “taste of jail,” which he said lowered her risk to reoffend.
Phillips amended her release conditions to allow her to visit Ottawa, but not the downtown core. He maintained the ban on Lich's access to social media, saying that prohibiting such access remained warranted.