Nfld. & Labrador

Journalist wants all charges dropped stemming from Muskrat Falls protests

Justin Brake is challenging the criminal mischief and contempt charges he’s facing for inhabiting Muskrat Falls with protesters last October.

Justin Brake challenging criminal mischief, contempt charges from last October

Justin Brake wasn't in court Thursday. His lawyer appeared by phone on his behalf. (Jacob Barker/CBC)

Justin Brake is challenging the criminal mischief and contempt charges he's facing stemming from the protests at Muskrat Falls last October, where he was inside the megaproject's work site covering the group's movements for

In order to get inside, he broke an existing court injunction, which landed him the contempt charge.

Filing a stay

Brake's lawyer, Geoff Budden, plans to file a stay on that matter next week.

Geoff Budden is representing Justin Brake for his civil and criminal matters. (Sherry Vivian/CBC)

"Mr. Brake does not believe that the charges are correct and he looks forward to his opportunity to defend himself in court," he said.

Criminally, Brake has been charged with contempt and mischief. He pleaded not guilty to both on Thursday.

Also facing civil charges

Brake also faces civil charges relating to the same autumn protests.

Budden is representing Brake for both criminal and civil proceedings. He's already filed an appeal on the civil matters in hopes of getting those charges dropped.

"We brought a preliminary application that argued where Nalcor admitted they failed to advise the court that he was a journalist, that in and of itself should be grounds for throwing out the order," he said.

"[Justice] Murphy disagreed with us and we have appealed his decision to the court of appeal."

Budden and Brake are due back in provincial court on July 21 for the criminal matters.

A date hasn't yet been set for the civil appeal hearing.