Bail hearing held for man accused of conspiring to murder RCMP officers at Coutts border blockade

·2 min read
Christopher Lysak, 48, appeared in court via closed-circuit TV for his bail hearing Tuesday on charges that include conspiring to murder RCMP officers and threatening an RCMP officer. (Mary Haasdyk - image credit)
Christopher Lysak, 48, appeared in court via closed-circuit TV for his bail hearing Tuesday on charges that include conspiring to murder RCMP officers and threatening an RCMP officer. (Mary Haasdyk - image credit)

A bail hearing took place Tuesday for one of the four men charged with conspiring to murder RCMP officers at the Coutts border blockade.

Christopher Lysak, 48, faces three other charges, including threatening an RCMP officer, mischief and a weapons offence.

Prosecutor Matt Dalidowicz argued against Lysak's release while defence lawyer Jim Lutz told the judge his client should be granted bail.

A publication ban covers all of the evidence and arguments presented at the hearing.

Court of Queen's Bench Justice Vaughan Hartigan said he would likely deliver his decision on Wednesday morning.

Submitted by Alberta RCMP
Submitted by Alberta RCMP

Weapons, body armour seized

Thirteen people were charged Feb. 14 following incidents involving physical threats to RCMP officers' safety and raids on trailers near the protest area, which resulted in the seizure of a cache of weapons and body armour.

The on-and-off blockade of the busy border crossing by people opposed to COVID-19 health restrictions lasted more than two weeks before protesters pulled out the day after the arrests.

Four of those charged — Lysak, Chris Carbert, 44, Anthony Olienick, 39, and Jerry Morin, 40 — face more serious charges that include conspiracy to murder RCMP officers.

Carbert, Olienick and Morin each have a bail hearing scheduled to take place this week.

Carbert/Facebook, Coutts Convoy Restart/Facebook, Morin/Facebook, Instagram
Carbert/Facebook, Coutts Convoy Restart/Facebook, Morin/Facebook, Instagram

Ties to white supremacist group

CBC News has previously reported that Carbert and Lysak both have ties to Jeremy MacKenzie, the Nova Scotia founder of Diagolon.

The group has been described by University of New Brunswick professor David Hofmann as an American-style militia movement.

Members of Diagolon want to establish a white nationalist state through violence, according to Hofmann.

Lysak appears in a photo with MacKenzie. He also appears in a photo posted by MacKenzie of the Coutts protests. In that image, Lysak is wearing a tank top with what appears to be the Diagolon symbol on the front.

Two Diagolon patches were found on body armour seized by police during the execution of the Coutts search warrants.

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