A glacial pace from the Crown, hundreds of pages of documents, and the addition of new witnesses in the ongoing criminal trial of Freedom Convoy organizers Tamara Lich and Chris Barber will likely push the trial well beyond its scheduled 16 days, Lich’s lawyer says.
“The Crown said that they would have their evidence in in 10 days, and there’s no way in the world that’s going to happen, so the judge is looking at finding an additional two weeks,” defense lawyer Lawrence Greenspon told Rebel News Thursday.
“The way this trial’s going, I don’t think two weeks is even going to be enough. At some point, we have to sit down – and I assume that’s going to happen Monday – and realistically see…how long it’s going to take for the Crown to get its evidence in.”
By Thursday, the Crown had only concluded with two of its witnesses, with nearly two dozen expected to be called and efforts underway to add more.
Greenspon noted that part of the slog has been from the Crown’s introduction of 212 pages of posts from the Freedom Convoy’s Facebook page.
When the trial dates were set last year, lawyers for both sides agreed that 16 days would be “sufficient to try a mischief and other related charges,” Greenspon said.
Lich and Barber face charges of mischief, intimidation, and obstructing police.
The Crown’s evidence has included footage of Freedom Convoy press conferences along with other videos taken throughout the three-week protest in Ottawa.
The defence intends to argue that much of this evidence is unconnected to the charges against Lich and Barber.
The Crown has argued that “hold the line,” a frequent catchphrase used by Convoy protesters, was a criminal incitement, though the defence plans to dispute this, Barber’s lawyer Diane Magas told reporters.