City police have laid a charged against a Vegreville man in what they are calling a precedent setting case. A self-proclaimed Freeman on the Land individual is facing a charge of ‘paper terrorism’. It’s the first time such a charge has been laid against someone claiming to be a member of the so-called sovereign citizen movement.
“The charge of intimidation has been laid before. Freemen have been charged before. What’s not happened before is that a Freeman has been charged with them using paper terrorism in order to intimidate,” Detective Rae Gerrard told reporters. “This is the precedent setting aspect.”
Police allege a peace officer ticketed a driver for speeding in Beaver County, about 100 kilometres east of Edmonton, in May 2015. The man is said then to have started a campaign of ‘paper terrorism’ where various documents are filed in court. Gerrard said a lean was even attempted to be placed on the peace officer’s home in a campaign that lasted three months. However none of the documents are considered legitimate.
“They use a plethora of documents, which really mean absolutely nothing — they’re just cutting and pasting from all over the internet from laws all over the world — and they put them together into hundreds and hundreds of pages of documents and flood the courts with this just in an effort to overwhelm the courts and confuse people and really have people give up on prosecutions. Or, intimidate the people involved to drop the prosecution completely.”
Allen Boisjoli, 45, was charged after a multi-jurisdictional investigation which wrapped up in August.
Freemen claim to be in opposition to government and the rule of law, and they support their own interpretation of common law. At last count there are a suspected 30,000 in Canada sympathetic to the cause. Gerrard said they can be considered extremely dangerous.
“The FBI have described the Freemen in the U.S. as a domestic terror threat, and they’ve been responsible for multiple murders of police officers. We’ve not seen that in Canada thankfully, but we certainly do take them seriously.”
Gerrard said Boisjoli has not paid the ticket. He’s next to appear in court November 7 and is currently out on bail. His trial is scheduled for March.