A Superior Court Justice has granted a request for the owners of St. Brigid’s in Ottawa’s Lowertown neighborhood to evict The United People of Canada (TUPC), a group associated with the Freedom Convoy.
Judge Sally Gomery’s decision, released Friday, also orders the controversial group to pay $58,000 in fees to property owners within 30 days.
Patrick McDonald, who along with three other partners owns the property near the ByWard Market, alleges a deal for TUPC to buy the building has collapsed because TUPC failed to make deposits totaling $100,000, according to court documents.
His affidavit states that failure to make these payments, coupled with the $10,000 owed by the group in rent and failure to provide evidence of $5 million in liability insurance, gives the landlord the right to terminate the lease.
In mid-August, notices were posted on the premises that the deal had ended, but TUPC refused to vacate the premises.
On Monday, the group’s lawyer claimed it had an “oral agreement” with the owners rather than a written lease, while the landlords say the only agreement was a purchase and sale agreement, which Komer signed.
From that agreement, it appears that the site would be sold for $5.95 million.
In her decision, Gomery wrote that the terms of the lease were set out in the sale agreement and that TUPC “materially breached the agreement” when it failed to pay the $100,000 “despite two deadline extensions.”
The judge also stated that the termination was valid and that TUPC is not entitled to any relief from consequences because it has still not paid what it is supposed to do under the agreement, and “has not come to court with clean hands”.
Gordon Douglas, the landlords’ attorney, said he has submitted a draft injunction to the court, which must be signed by Gomery. According to the lawyer, a court sheriff will ultimately decide when the writs are to be executed.
The judge’s decision follows months of tension between residents of Lowertown and the group. TUPC repeatedly called the police and supporters, including Komer, had sprayed people with water guns.
Officers were called to the area so often that the police promised to be extra present around the property until the situation is resolved.