Home//In The News//Four Coutts protesters charged with conspiracy to commit murder

At least three protesters arrested at the Coutts border crossing have been charged with conspiracy to commit murder, with possibly a fourth to come

Four protesters arrested at the Coutts border crossing have been charged with conspiracy to commit murder.

Eleven people had their cases addressed Tuesday in Lethbridge provincial court as Calgary defence lawyer Yoav Niv secured the release of seven of the suspects.

But Niv told Judge Gregory Maxwell that three of the group face a charge of conspiracy to commit murder and will have to have the issue of bail resolved before a Court of Queen’s Bench justice.

Crown prosecutor Steven Johnston said four people in total would be facing that charge.

The defence lawyer adjourned the cases of Chris Carbert, 44, of Lethbridge; Christopher Lysak, 48, also of Lethbridge; and Anthony Olienick, 39, of Claresholm to Friday so he can attempt to schedule a bail hearing in Court of Queen’s Bench.

Later in the day, RCMP issued a statement identifying the fourth person as Jerry Morin, 40.

The quartet is charged with conspiracy to commit murder as well as mischief by impeding the lawful use of property by others and possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose. Lysak faces a fourth charge of uttering threats.

Niv also asked the case of Evan Colenutt be adjourned to Friday since Johnston will be contesting his release. Colenutt, 23, of Raymond, faces mischief and possession of a weapon charges.

Also facing allegations of mischief and a weapons charge are Ursula Allred, 22, of Magrath; Johnson Chichow Law, 39, of Calgary; Justin Martin, 22, of Raymond; Eastin Stewart Oler, 22, of Raymond; Joanne Person, 62, of Coutts; Luke Berk, 62, of Red Deer; and Janx Zaremba, 18, of Raymond.

Johnston consented to the release of those seven individuals on condition they not be in contact with each other and remain at least 200 metres from any protests.

All but Person, who lives in the village of Coutts, are prohibited from travelling south of Milk River, with the exception of a single occasion in the company of a peace officer to retrieve property left at the blockade site.

Meanwhile, RCMP said late Tuesday Jaclyne Martin, 39, faces mischief and weapons charges.

Morin and Martin’s files had not been fully processed as of Tuesday, preventing them from appearing in court.

While Allred, Martin, Oler and Zaremba are all listed on court documents as being from southern Alberta towns, Niv told court they had all been residing in Calgary and working at the same lighting company.

Niv also raised concerns Person’s residence in Coutts may be within 200 metres of the border crossing, but Johnston noted the protest there had ended.

“I’m hoping there are no more protests at the Canadian border,” the prosecutor said.

Those released on bail are due back in Lethbridge provincial court on March 15.

The group was among 13 people arrested by Mounties on Monday at an ongoing protest at the Coutts border crossing.

Mounties said they executed a search warrant early Monday on three trailers associated with the group, finding 13 long guns, handguns, multiple sets of body armour, a machete, a large quantity of ammunition and high capacity magazines.

“The group was said to have a willingness to use force against the police if any attempts were made to disrupt the blockade,” the Alberta RCMP said in a media release.

“This resulted in an immediate and complex investigation to determine the extent of the threat and criminal organization.”

Original Article: https://calgaryherald.com/news/crime/suspects-arrested-by-mounties-at-coutts-border-blockade-make-first-court-appearance

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