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McHale brings allegations against two more OPP officers

September 16, 2010 Hamilton Spectator

Daniel Nolan

CAYUGA — Activist Gary McHale has brought criminal allegations against two senior Ontario Provincial Police officers whom he claims obstructed justice.

McHale says Justice of the Peace Lillian Ross laid the charge after he appeared before her this morning in Cayuga court.

He argued using e-mails he received from the Crown in disclosure that Deputy Commissioner Chris Lewis and Superintendent Ron Gentle instructed officers to arrest him in connection with a protest surrounding a Highway 6 smoke shop on Dec. 1, 2007, even though they acknowledged there was no evidence a crime had been committed.

He cited one e-mail from Gentle where the superintendent said “We want to ensure” when the OPP arrest and charge a native protester in connection with the incident “we do the same with McHale to eliminate any of the usual issues.”

Natives and non-natives clashed during the protest and a number of people were arrested.

McHale said Crown attorney David King argued the e-mails did not only say to charge McHale, but also when to charge him.

McHale has led a number of rallies to protest what he calls two-tier justice in the policing of the Douglas Creek Estates land claims dispute. He will be speaking at a rally this Sunday in Caledonia.

McHale had previously succeeded in bringing a private charge against OPP Commissioner Julian Fantino for attempting to influence municipal officials to not attend his rallies, but the charge was dropped by the Crown in February after it took over the case.

McHale’s appeal on that move is in court May 13.

A spokesperson for the Ministry of the Attorney General would not comment because documents had not yet been filed with the courts, but said the ministry was aware McHale’s private prosecution was in court.

It can take a day or two before the documents make their way through the system and then are referred to the police service where the accused resides for the serving of a summons.

Spokespeople for the OPP could not be reached for comment.

McHale said Ross issued a summons for the two officers to appear in Cayuga court April 28.

McHale was charged with counselling to commit mischief for alleging telling a protester to block a street with his truck.