Freedom Convoy Organizer Tamara Lich Appeals Bail Conditions

By Andrew Chen
Andrew Chen
Andrew Chen
Andrew Chen is an Epoch Times reporter based in Toronto.
March 25, 2022 Updated: March 25, 2022

Tamara Lich is appealing her bail conditions because they violate her Charter freedoms, says a constitutional rights group representing the Freedom Convoy organizer.

The Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedom (JCCF), which represents several convoy leaders, announced on March 24 that Lich will appeal the bail conditions handed down by the Ontario Superior Court.

“While the bail conditions align with Ms. Lich’s Charter right to be presumed innocent, they also violated Tamara Lich’s Charter freedom of expression, association, and peaceful assembly,” JCCF said in a news release.

Her bail conditions prevent Lich, or anyone on her behalf, from logging on or posting messages on social media. She cannot “engage in organization or promotion of anti-COVID 19 mandate activities and Freedom Convoy activities” or express support for any such events through any means. The violation of a bail condition can result in a fine, imprisonment, or both, JCCF said.

Lich was arrested on Feb. 17, just days after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau invoked the Emergencies Act on Feb. 14, granting sweeping additional powers to the police to remove convoy protesters from Ottawa’s downtown core.

Lich faces one count of mischief and one count of counselling to commit mischief, according to an appeal of her bail condition filed on March 24. Additional charges were laid later the same day.

“A ban on all forms of expression on social media or to even log in to social media and on all forms of organization or promotion of anti-covid19 mandates is incompatible with the principle of restraint,” the filed document says.

“And also incompatible with perfectly legitimate forms of expression on social media or otherwise, such as expressing a political view about the lockdown measures, communicating with family and friends or viewing posts from other individuals.”

The document also said the bail conditions “do not have a rational connection to the risk to public safety or the commission of further offences.”

Lich was released on bail on March 7. She was initially denied bail on Feb. 22 by Ontario Court Justice Julie Bourgeois, who said her detention was “necessary for the protection and safety of the public.”

Lich and a co-organizer of the Freedom Convoy, Chris Barber, both faced new charges on March 24. Lich and Barber are now both charged with counselling mischief, counselling intimidation, counselling to obstruct police, intimidation and mischief.

Barber, also arrested on Feb. 17, was released on bail the following day. He had previously been charged with counselling to commit mischief, counselling to disobey a court order, counselling to obstruct police and mischief.

Pat King, another prominent figure during the Ottawa protest, also faces new charges after appearing in court on March 24. King is not one of the Freedom Convoy organizers, a lawyer from the Justice Centre said in a press conference on Feb. 6.

The Freedom Convoy initially began as a protest against the federal COVID-19 vaccine mandates imposed on truck drivers crossing the border into the United States. As large convoys of trucks arrived in downtown Ottawa in a demonstration on Jan. 29, the protest evolved into a national movement with many joining to call for an end to all pandemic restrictions.

The movement inspired similar protests around the world and across Canada, including several blockades of Canada-U.S. border crossings in Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, and Ontario. The blockades were mostly cleared by the time emergency orders were invoked, but police forcibly removed remaining protestors in Ottawa in mid-February.

Andrew Chen
Andrew Chen is an Epoch Times reporter based in Toronto.