Lich accused of breaching conditions, set to return to court in Ottawa tomorrow

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Tamara Lich is expected to make an unceremonious return to Ottawa Wednesday where she will appear before a judge on new charges of breaching the conditions of her release.

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Medicine Hat police confirmed on Tuesday they had executed a Canada-wide warrant for her arrest and Lich is expected to be formally charged with one count of failing to comply with a release order.

That warrant was “extended” beyond the Ontario jurisdiction, police said, in order for local Medicine Hat police to make the arrest.

Lich was arrested and appeared in court in Alberta Tuesday morning for a “judicial interim release” hearing.

A justice of the peace ordered a six-day remand for Lich, police said, and she will be transported back to Ottawa. She is expected to appear in court in Ottawa Wednesday.

According to Medicine Hat police, the Canada-wide warrant was issued by police in Ottawa and was authorized by the local Crown Attorney’s office.

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The six-day remand is “a process whereby the accused may be held by the jurisdiction where the warrant was carried out (Medicine Hat) so that a hearing before a justice of the peace can occur.”

The accused person must then be brought before a judge or a justice within six days in the province where the alleged offence was committed.

Medicine Hat police did not comment on the nature of the alleged breach of Lich’s release conditions.

Lich was arrested Feb. 17 and is jointly charged with fellow protest organizer Chris Barber with mischief, obstructing police, counselling others to commit mischief and intimidation.

She was initially denied bail on Feb. 22, though that decision was overturned by Superior Court Justice John Johnston on March 7 and Lich was released from jail with a list of conditions.

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She was ordered to post $5,000 bond, and her surety, a family member whose identity is protected by a publication ban, posted an additional $20,000.

Lich is barred from making any direct or indirect contact with a list of fellow protest organizers; she remains banned from social media and cannot allow anyone to post on her behalf.

This is the second time the Crown has sought to put Lich back behind bars after she spent 18 days at the Ottawa Carleton Detention Centre following her arrest.

Assistant Crown Attorney Moiz Karimjee sought to have Lich returned to jail in May and accused her of breaking her release conditions twice: first by accepting a “freedom award” from the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms in Toronto, and again by accepting a convoy-themed pendant as a gift from a supporter.

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The judge in that bail review said the Crown failed to prove those breaches.

Superior Court Justice Kevin Phillips said he accepted that Lich saw no “live connection” between accepting the pendant — or accepting the award — and her support for the Freedom Convoy.

It is not yet know what information led police to lay the current breach charge.

Lich attended the JCCF gala on June 19 in Toronto, sending social media abuzz with photos of Lich posing with her supporters, including with Tom Marazzo.

Though he has not been charged with a crime, Marazzo is among the people on Lich’s non-communication order. She is to have no communication, either directly or indirectly with other key organizers, including Pat King and Tyson “Freedom George” Billings, who pleaded guilty and was released earlier this month.

“I know Tamara well enough to know that she would expect us to remain calm,” Marazzo said via Twitter Monday evening. “Yes, her arrest is shocking. However, we cannot use this as an excuse to behave poorly or break laws in defiance of her arrest. We are, and have always been, a peaceful group. We’ll prove it yet again.”

ahelmer@postmedia.com

Twitter.com/helmera

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