'Freedom Convoy' Leader Pat King Charged with Perjury, Obstruction of Justice for Protesting COVID Mandates
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One of the leaders of Canada's "Freedom Convoy," a group of truckers that earlier this year shut down downtown Ottawa for three weeks over a government-issued COVID-19 mandate, and inspired similar convoys in the U.S., has been charged with perjury and obstruction of justice.
Pat King was arrested on Feb. 18 on charges related to his involvement in the protest, The Toronto Sun reported. He has remained in custody ever since.
King, 44, was denied bail on Feb. 25. He was back in court on April 13, where his lawyers again argued for his release.
According to The Sun, just one day later, Crown prosecutors announced they had charged King with three counts of perjury and three counts of obstruction of justice. They did not elaborate on the allegations since details about the case are off-limits to the media.
In addition, King faces 10 other charges pertaining to the Ottawa protest, including mischief, intimidation, obstructing police, and disobeying a court order.
He is scheduled to appear in court next week to reschedule the rest of his bail review hearing.
Other high-profile figures within the convoy movement, including Tamara Lich and Chris Barber, have already been granted bail, according to CTV News.
As CBN News reported, the truckers arrived in Ottawa on Jan. 29 to protest a vaccine mandate issued by the Canadian government two weeks earlier.
The order stated that truckers must be vaccinated against COVID-19 or be tested and quarantined before crossing into the U.S.
Members of the convoy parked their trucks in downtown Ottawa to block the streets in protest, while other Canadian truckers and their supporters also blocked the Ambassador Bridge, which spans the border between Detroit, Michigan, and Windsor, Ontario.
Despite threats of legal consequences, crowds of demonstrators gathered on the roadways for weeks, protesting the mandated COVID-19 vaccine measures.
Millions of dollars were donated to the truckers through a crowdfunding website. The website later announced it was withholding funds from the truckers and reimbursing donors.
As CBN News reported, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau invoked emergency powers on Feb. 14, allowing the government to seize cars and trucks, suspend insurance, and even freeze truckers' personal and corporate bank accounts.
Trudeau said at the time, "The Emergencies Act will be used to strengthen and support law enforcement agencies at all levels across the country." But the Canadian Civil Liberties Association said the government had not met the standard for invoking the Emergencies Act.
Reuters reported that the act is only intended to deal with threats to "sovereignty, security and territorial integrity."
The crackdown by Ottawa Police came on Feb. 19 with a warning to all demonstrators.
"DEMONSTRATORS: You must leave. You must cease further unlawful activity and immediately remove your vehicle and/or property from all unlawful protest sites. Anyone within the unlawful protest site may be arrested," the department said in a tweet.
By that evening, more than 100 arrests had been made and 21 vehicles were towed from the country's capital.
The Canadian protests sparked similar trucker convoys in the U.S.
One group of truckers known as "The People's Convoy" traveled from California to demonstrate against federal COVID-19 mandates. The convoy circled the Washington, D.C. beltway for a few days in March as supporters crowded onto overpasses, waving at the convoy and holding signs and American flags.
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