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10 Arrested at Alliance Sociale Demonstration Released Today

the protesters arrested on saturday are now out of jail

by Neal Rockwell

Ten people arrested on Saturday at a protest against provincial austerity measures and organized by the Alliance Sociale have been let of detention today.

The arrested, dressed in Black Bloc attire, had come to disagreement with union organizers during the demonstration. The organizers had told them that they were not permitted to be near the front of the event and instructed them to move to the back of the crowd. They Bloc contingent ignored these demands and remained in place. Police then approached them, according to sources, asking them about their flags, suggesting that they were weapons. They were then surrounded by riot police who arrested them when they tried to disperse. They received numerous small injuries during this period. One woman received a black eye and another person was beaten with a baton as well as suffered a back injury. He explained that he had been hit in the ear and then tackled by three officers. While on the ground one of the officers instructed him to run, at which point he was released. When he did this he was tackled again, where he claims he received further rough treatment based on the pretext that he had attempted to flee.

The detainees then spent the next 48 hours in the basement of the Centre d'Operations Sud, until their hearing today. Originally they were told they would be charged with conspiracy, but those charges were not pressed. Instead they were charged with weapons possession under a provision of the Terrorism Act, though it is unclear at this time what weapons were in their possession at the time. They seem to have been fairly trivial objects. All but one were released on their own recognizance, the other was required to post a bail of $500.

There was a march and vigil in solidarity with the arreted outside the Palais de Justice today.

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