A leading aboriginal voice against shale gas development in New Brunswick is behind bars until at least Monday.
John Levi, a warrior chief from the Elsipogtog First Nation, is charged with obstructing police and mischief in connection with an anti-shale gas protest last month in Kent County, where SWN Resources Canada is conducting seismic testing.
He was one of 12 people arrested at the June 21 demonstration on Highway 126; one of about 34 protesters arrested in recent weeks.
Levi made a brief appearance in Moncton provincial court on Friday to face the charges, but the Crown objected to his release, saying he had breached a conditional sentence on another matter.
The judge ordered Levi to stay in jail until a bail hearing on Monday morning.
About 30 of Levi's supporters attended the court proceedings on Friday in Moncton. The supporters stood in court when Levi stood.
At one point, a man shouted, "That's community service this man is doing for us."
After Levi was led away, one man swore and stormed out of the courtroom. A woman asked to address the judge.
She said it was Levi, not the RCMP, keeping the peace in the eastern First Nations community and he should not be kept in custody.
The judge said the matter would have to be decided at the bail hearing.
Another supporter, Danny Leger, told CBC News he was disappointed by the proceedings.
"I've seen him at different times personally intervening between the folks up there and the RCMP, trying to keep things calm and it's very unfortunate that he's been taken out of that role by the courts today," Leger said.
Meanwhile, a 35-year-old man from Halifax, who was arrested on Thursday for allegedly uttering threats against a police officer on June 21 in the Rogersville area, has been released from custody, say RCMP.
The man has not yet been charged, but is scheduled to appear in court in September.
Media Co-op, an independent media organization, has identified the man as being one of its reporters, who has been covering the ongoing protests against seismic testing by SWN Resources Canada.
Opponents fear the hydraulic fracturing process used to extract natural gas will ruin the water supply and damage the surrounding environment.