Convoy organizer Chris Barber released, ordered to leave Ottawa
Judge orders him to leave city within 24 hours, province by Wednesday
Chris Barber, a key organizer of the Freedom Convoy was granted bail on Friday evening by a judge with the Ontario Court of Justice on the condition that he leave the city of Ottawa within 24 hours of his release.
Barber is facing four criminal charges. They are counselling to commit mischief, counselling to disobey a court order, counselling to obstruct police, and mischief that interferes with the use and enjoyment of property.
The protest he helped organize has blocked Ottawa's streets for more than three weeks.
In a massive action Friday police made moves to clear the occupation of Wellington Street. By late Friday evening police had arrested around 100 people in association with the protest.
Justice Julie Bourgeois permitted Barber's release with a financial bond and his wife acting as surety — meaning she is also financially responsible should he breach any of the conditions of his bail and he does not. Barber could also be charged with a breach of court orders and, if convicted, face jail.
As part of his release, he is required to leave the city of Ottawa within 24 hours of his release from custody and the province of Ontario no later than midnight Wednesday.
On his way out of the province he must update police once a day on his location.
Barber ordered not to support convoy in any way
Barber's bail conditions also stipulate he cannot support the Freedom Convoy in any manner, which includes verbally. He's not allowed to finance the convoy, except to assist other protesters to leave the city, though only through his own funds.
Barber is also not permitted to contact fellow organizers Tamara Lich, Daniel Bulford, or Patrick King, except in front of lawyers as part of legal proceedings.
Lich and Barber are named along with Benjamin Dichter in a proposed class-action lawsuit filed with the Ontario Superior Court of Justice by lawyer Paul Champ on behalf of his client, 21-year-old public servant Zexi Li.
Barber's next court date is set for March 1.
He was represented by lawyer Diane Magas, who is also representing fellow organizer Tamara Lich.
Lich was also expected to appear in court Friday, but her show cause hearing has been rescheduled for Saturday at 9:30 a.m.