A New Brunswick woman made a brief first appearance in court Friday on a charge of organizing or aiding in a traffic blockade on the day of a protest in Fredericton against COVID-19 measures back in February.
Bonnie Gilliard appeared in Fredericton provincial court on the Emergency Measures Act charge that she participated in, organized, financed or otherwise aided a blockade or interruption of the normal flow of traffic.
Gilliard told the judge she only learned of the charge when she received a court summons on Tuesday, and asked for more time to obtain disclosure.
A later court date was set for June 14.
Gilliard was met outside the courthouse by a group of about 16 supporters, who cheered as she walked out.
The New Brunswick Emergency Measures Act was amended to include the charge Gilliard is facing just days before hundreds gathered outside the legislature in downtown Fredericton to protest pandemic-related mandates.
The weekend-long protest in Fredericton remained peaceful, according to local officials and there was no gridlock of streets downtown, though there were some brief traffic snarls.
Police said two men were arrested Feb. 12 for unspecified Criminal Code violations and three tickets were issued under the Emergency Measures Act, along with "multiple" traffic tickets.
The charge Gilliard faces carries a fine ranging from $3,000 to $10,000 per person.