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Ottawa's police chief says criminal investigations into 'Freedom Convoy' will continue for months


Ottawa's interim police chief says the investigation into the three-week occupation of downtown Ottawa will continue for "months to come."

On Saturday, police cleared Wellington Street in front of Parliament Hill of protesters for the first time since the demonstration began on Jan. 28. As officers began moving into the downtown core on Friday, several vehicles left Wellington Street, Kent Street and other streets in the area.

However, interim chief Steve Bell says the investigation will not end when the demonstrators leave the streets of Ottawa.

"If you are involved in this protest, we will actively look to identify you and follow up with financial sanctions and criminal charges," Bell said.

"This investigation will go on for months to come. It has many, many different streams both from a federal financial level, from a provincial licensing level, from a Criminal Code level, from a municipal breach of court order, breach of court injunction level."

Former police chief Peter Sloly said at the start of the demonstration that police would be gathering intelligence on protesters and pursuing charges if necessary. In addition, Surete du Quebec officers were seen with video recorders around the Chateau Laurier on Friday.

Bell says the investigation into the "Freedom Convoy" demonstration will be "complicated and time consuming."

"You have my commitment that, that investigation will continue and we will hold people accountable for taking our streets over."

Police have arrested 170 people since the operation began Friday morning to remove demonstrators from downtown streets.

Police provided the following statistics on vehicles towed, seized and licences suspended.

  • 53 vehicles towed (46 vehicles removed from the secured area since Friday)
  • 22 licence plates seized
  • 11 Commercial Vehicle Operator Registrations suspended
  • 10 sanctions under the Ontario Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act for commercial vehicles in other provinces Top Stories

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