Chris Barber and Tamara Lich, two lead organizers of the Freedom Convoy protest, have been arrested in Ottawa, according to reports online.
Police made several more arrests on Feb. 17.
Despite the arrests, many protesters still remain in Ottawa. The protests started as a demonstration by truck drivers opposed to the federal government's requirement of COVID-19 vaccination for drivers crossing the U.S.-Canada border, but became a large movement as more people from across the country joined the cause to remove all COVID-19 mandates and restrictions. Convoys of protesting trucks and vehicles first converged in Ottawa on Jan. 29, with many camping by Parliament.
The lawsuit includes Freedom Convoy organizer Benjamin Dichter.
On Feb. 17, Ottawa's interim police chief warned that action to remove Freedom Convoy demonstrators was "imminent."
The arrests come after the Trudeau government's invocation of the Emergencies Act on Feb. 14, marking the first time the sweeping measure has been used since becoming law in 1988.
In a press conference on Feb. 14, Lich said despite the government's use of the Act, protesters will remain in Ottawa, but they will be peaceful.
“We are not afraid. In fact, every time the government decides to further suspend our civil liberties, our resolve strengthens and the importance of our mission becomes clearer,” Lich said. “We will remain peaceful, but planted on Parliament Hill until the mandates are decisively ended."
During a press conference, interim Ottawa police chief Steve Bell urged protesters to leave the downtown area.
"We want to end this unlawful protest peacefully and safely," Bell told reporters. "We have a very deliberate plan that will be methodical and take time for us to progress through and completely remove anyone from the core."
"This weekend will look very different than the last three," he said.
Police said they've established a perimeter around the downtown core of Ottawa with over 100 checkpoints to make sure only those working and living in the area, or police and medical emergency services will be allowed in.