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Court puts Freedom Convoy leaders’ trial on hold after resuming for just one day in the new year

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From LifeSiteNews

By Anthony Murdoch

Because the trial has lasted far longer than expected, new dates for the proceedings are being determined.

The trial for Freedom Convoy leaders Tamara Lich and Chris Barber resumed but only for one day. Because the trial has taken months longer than expected, the court now must determine future dates.

The Democracy Fund (TDF), which is crowdfunding Lich’s legal costs, noted in a Day 34 trial update that the sole court date on the books for 2024, which was last Thursday, saw Crown and defense submissions “regarding the admissibility of the February 2022 injunction hearing transcripts.”

The injunction hearing transcripts concern a horn-honking injunction placed on Freedom Convoy protesters in February 2022 after local citizens launched a complaint about the noise.

According to the TDF, the defense counsel is asking to have the transcripts admitted to the court record. The Crown is contesting this.

Barber’s lawyer, Diane Magas, presented to the court excerpts from both injunction hearings and emphasized the importance of “understanding the context behind the injunction judge’s comments” by “explaining his acceptance or rejection of specific terms.”

Magas asserted how the transcripts discuss the consequences of “breaching the injunction, highlighting the judge’s clarification that a breach would result in civil contempt, not criminal charges.”

“Additionally, she noted the injunction judge’s statement permitting individuals in Ottawa to continue protesting post-injunction,” the TDF said.

Lich’s lawyer, Lawrence Greenspon, spoke to the submissions that were made by then-Freedom Convoy leader lawyer Keith Wilson during the injunction hearing in 2022, “underscoring that it strictly pertained to honking and noise,” as noted by the TDF.

“Greenspon highlighted the injunction judge’s remark that there was ‘no evidence of any breach,’ emphasizing the credibility of a superior court judge who heard experienced counsel’s submissions,” the TDF said.

“They emphasized the injunction judge’s statement that the sole issue before him was honking horns, providing context to Greenspon’s ‘no evidence of breach’ quote,” the TDF stated.

The Crown had suggested that the injunction judge “referred only to a lack of evidence regarding honking horns, not a lack of evidence of any wrongdoing.”

Counsel is soon set to meet to determine the next days for when Day 35 will be scheduled.

Trial that began in September was supposed to last only 16 days

The trial, which began September 5, 2023, was expected to last only a few weeks.

In 2022, lawyers for both sides agreed that 16 days would be a reasonable amount of time for a fair trial. The Crown, however, took a long time going through its witness list.

Just before Christmas, the Freedom Convoy leaders’ lawyers said a $290 million class-action lawsuit filed by disgruntled Ottawa residents against the leaders is designed to “silence” the leaders’ right to free “expression.” The Freedom Convoy leaders’ lawyers have applied to have the case dismissed.

The trial until last Thursday was on hiatus since December 7.

On the last day of the trial for 2023, TDF observed that the court will resume in 2024 with a “voir dire,” or trial within a trial, to be “held over how comments made by the judge presiding over the Ottawa injunction order of February 2022 should be treated.”

“In the days following, there should be a decision on the defense motion to dismiss the Carter application,” TDF said.

Thus far, per TDF, the Crown has asserted “that the absence of violence or peaceful nature of the protest didn’t make it lawful, emphasizing that the onus was on the Crown to prove the protest’s unlawfulness.”

The Crown has been holding steadfast to the notion in trying to prove that Lich and Barber had somehow influenced the protesters’ actions through their words as part of a co-conspiracy. This claim has been rejected by the defense as weak.

The reality is that Lich and Barber collaborated with police on many occasions so that the protests were within the law.

Lich and Barber are facing multiple charges from the 2022 protests, including mischief, counseling mischief, counseling intimidation and obstructing police for taking part in and organizing the anti-mandate Freedom Convoy. As reported by LifeSiteNews at the time, despite the non-violent nature of the protest and the charges, Lich was jailed for weeks before she was granted bail.

In early 2022, the Freedom Convoy saw thousands of Canadians from coast to coast come to Ottawa to demand an end to COVID mandates in all forms. Despite the peaceful nature of the protest, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government enacted the Emergencies Act on February 14.

During the clear-out of protesters after the EA was put in place, one protester, an elderly lady, was trampled by a police horse, and one conservative female reporter was beaten by police and shot with a tear gas canister.

LifeSiteNews has been covering the trial extensively.

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COVID-19

‘Incompetence’: Pentagon Doesn’t Know How Much Money It Sent To Chinese Entities For Risky Virus Research

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From the Daily Caller News Foundation

By NICK POPE

 

The Department of Defense (DOD) does not know how much money it directly or indirectly sent to Chinese entities to conduct research on viruses with pandemic potential, according to a new report by the DOD’s Office of Inspector General (OIG).

The OIG’s report found that DOD has supplied Chinese entities — whether directly or indirectly via subgrants — with taxpayer cash to research pathogens and the enhancement thereof, but the exact figure is unknown because of “limitations” in the DOD’s internal tracking system. Government funding for such research in China has come under scrutiny since the coronavirus pandemic, which multiple government entities believe started when an engineered virus leaked from a Chinese laboratory that was hosting U.S. government-backed gain-of-function research.

“Incompetence, absurdity, insanity; it’s hard to find a word that adequately describes this. Of all the things that DOD tracks, funds for dangerous research that could find their way to a hostile regime should be at the top of the list of those they keep close tabs on,” Michael Chamberlain, director of Protect the Public’s Trust, told the Daily Caller News Foundation regarding the OIG report’s findings. “It makes you wonder if they really know where all our nuclear warheads are. The military is one of the few areas of government in which the public still maintains a modicum of trust, but, sadly, it looks like they are working hard to squander even that.”

The OIG review of this specific issue was required by the terms of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for fiscal year 2024, which President Joe Biden signed into law in December 2023. The OIG’s investigation sought to determine just how much taxpayer cash was routed via “grants, contracts, subgrants, subcontracts, or any other type of agreement or collaboration, to Chinese research labs or to fund research or experiments in China or other foreign countries that could have reasonably resulted in the enhancement of pathogens of pandemic potential, from 2014 through 2023.”

Specifically, the OIG learned from U.S. Army officials that 12 grant awards fit the description of what it was investigating, seven of which were subgrants or subcontracts provided to entities in China or other foreign countries for research involving or related to enhanced pathogens, its report states. The OIG’s review also identified a further $9.9 million in funding that reached Chinese entities for research purposes, though that research was unrelated to pathogens.

“However, we did encounter significant challenges in searching for awards related to section 252 of the FY 2024 NDAA reporting requirement due to limitations in the DoD’s systems used to track contracts and grants,” the OIG report states. “Therefore, the full extent of DoD funds provided to Chinese research laboratories or other foreign countries for research related to enhancement of pathogens of pandemic potential is unknown.”

The issues with DOD’s grant tracking systems created “significant constraints” for OIG that “hindered [its] ability to conduct a thorough examination” of DOD’s involvement in funding this specific type of research, the report states.

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) previously conducted a similar review of DOD’s spending and Chinese entities receiving taxpayer dollars to conduct research on pathogens of pandemic potential, and its final report — published in September 2022 — also detailed similar struggles with the DoD’s grant and sub-grant tracking systems.

The Department of Energy (DOE) has concluded that the COVID-19 pandemic most likely began when the virus leaked from the Wuhan Institute of Virology in China, which was the site of gain-of-function research funded by the U.S. government via an organization called EcoHealth Alliance. Additionally, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Director Christopher Wray has acknowledged that his organization has reached a similar conclusion.

Despite this, former Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Anthony Fauci has reiterated his position that a lab leak is the less likely scenario of the two as recently as Tuesday. The COVID-19 pandemic killed more than one million Americans, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and millions more globally, while the American policy response to the pandemic inflicted considerable economic and social damage on the general public.

The DOD did not respond immediately to a request for comment.

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Canadian doctor forced to pay $44K fine, serve suspension for prescribing Ivermectin to treat COVID

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From LifeSiteNews

By Anthony Murdoch

The College of Physicians and Surgeons of Saskatchewan claimed that a Regina doctor was engaged in unprofessional conduct for going against a policy that restricted doctors from prescribing Ivermectin or ‘alternative’ therapies.

A doctor working in a medium-sized Canadian city has been suspended and fined for prescribing Ivermectin to some of his patients to treat or prevent one from getting COVID.

On June 7, the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Saskatchewan (CPSS) ruled that Regina doctor Tshipita Kabongo was engaged in unprofessional conduct for going against a policy that restricted doctors from prescribing Ivermectin or “alternative” therapies to patients.

As a result, Kabongo was hit with a one-month suspension starting August 1 and was ordered to pay $44,783.72, which was what it cost for the investigation and hearing.

Kabongo worked at the Integrated Wellness and Health Balance Centre in Regina. From April 2020 to March 2022, he prescribed Ivermectin to some of his patients.

The CPSS policy on “alternatives” to the COVID jabs as a means to combat the virus stated that it is “unethical to engage in or to aid and abet in treatment which has no acceptable scientific basis, may be dangerous, may deceive the patient by giving false hope, or which may cause the patient to delay in seeking conventional care until his or her condition becomes irreversible.”

Instead, the CPSS only promoted the COVID shots for the virus, which today are known to have many negative side effects.

“The most effective strategy for preventing COVID-19 continues to be immunization and all Saskatchewan. Ministry of Health approved vaccines provide a high level of protection,” the CPSS said in a joint letter.

According to the CPSS, Kabongo’s recommendation of Ivermectin to some of his patients was not “medically” necessary because he did not recommend other treatment options.

Health Canada, along with many medical groups in Saskatchewan and in other provinces, in the fall of 2021 said that using Ivermectin to treat COVID was potentially dangerous and claimed that there was no evidence the drugs worked to stop the virus.

However, Dr. Pierre Kory, the author of The War on Ivermectinclaimed in testimony that the drug is safe and said some meta-studies show that it has an 81 percent mortality reduction rate in those with COVID.

COVID vaccine mandates, which came from provincial governments with the support of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s federal government, split Canadian society. Many governmental or private sector workers lost their jobs for refusing to get the shots.

Shots were promoted by health officials as only way to treat COVIDn

The mRNA shots have been linked to a multitude of negative and often severe side effects in children.

A recent study by a team of experts that includes prominent critics of the COVID establishment as well as Dr. Peter McCullough shows that the COVID shots have a 200-times higher risk of brain clots than other injections.

The jabs also have connections to cell lines derived from aborted babies. As a result, many Catholics and other Christians refused to take them.

However, despite health officials in Canada and the United States opposing using Ivermectin, which is historically used to treat parasites and rosacea when applied to the skin, the drug has long been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for a variety of human ailments. In fact, it is included in the World Health Organization’s (WHO’S) Model List of Essential Medicines.

During the earlier days of COVID, the use of Ivermectin to treat COVID gained notoriety, and there have been many promising studies along with anecdotal reports of positive results from the use of the drugs.

It even got to the point that some families in the United States had to go to court to force hospitals to let them try the medications for their loved ones. Some U.S. doctors have seen their medical licenses threatened for prescribing it, which prompted states such as Missouri and Oklahoma to take action to protect medical freedom for those who wish to try and prescribe them.

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