APTN National News
A contempt of court order was issued against the Sarnia CN Rail blockade Tuesday for failing to comply with a previous court injunction to remove it when it began 13 days ago in support of the Idle No More movement.
Named in the court order is Ron Plain, the spokesman for the people mounting the blockade. He is scheduled to be in Sarnia court Wednesday at 11 a.m. according to a statement released by members of the Aamjiwnaang First Nation blockade.
Plain was charged for failing to remove the blockade of a CN Rail spur line that runs through the Aamjiwnaang reserve, that is also within the city limits of Sarnia.
Mayor Mike Bradley isn’t named in the court order he said Wednesday morning.
“I am not aware of any contempt order against me. The relationship with CN is very strained because of their tactics so wouldn’t surprise me (if) they did although I have no power to direct the police or end the protest,” said Bradley.
Bradley said Sarnia police is also in court Wednesday morning “to provide evidence explaining the steps (if any) the Sarnia Police Service has taken to enforce the orders of Hon. Justice David Brown dated Dec. 21 and Dec. 27,” according to a court document.
On Dec. 27, Brown made the Dec. 21 injunction indefinite calling on Sarnia police to end the blockade.
Police chief Phil Nelson and Bradley have said they didn’t support the blockade but refused to move in on the protestors as long as it remained peaceful. They wanted to negotiate shutting it down, rather than using force.
CN has steadfastly been against the blockade saying it was illegal, but maintained they supported First Nation peoples’ right to protest.
Several meetings have taken place with CN, Bradley and Nelson, as well as members of the band council. A staff member from the office of Aboriginal Affairs Minister John Duncan also participated in talks to negotiate a peaceful end.
Plain has said the blockade would stay up until a meeting between Prime Minister Stephen Harper, the governor general and First Nations leaders took place to discuss treaty agreements. They were doing so in support of Chief Theresa Spence who been on a hunger strike, only consuming fish broth and tea, since Dec. 11.
She is vowing not to eat until a meeting takes place.