(Trois-Rivieres) The six individuals arrested as part of Operation Rhea who were trying to regain their freedom finally won the case before the Superior Court.
Gaétan Dumas judge has indeed agreed to release them during judicial proceedings against them. In his decision, he concluded that the trial judge, Claude Provost, committed several errors of law including the presumption of innocence concepts to the stage of investigation and security burden on the overthrow of the scope of the proof.
He also accused the judge of committing manifest errors in the assessment of the facts that were submitted, particularly the reliability of the proposed sureties. He writes: “In the instance, seen the mistakes of law, given the palpable and overriding error in assessing the facts and given that the trial judge made a patently wrong decision, the court believes there reason to intervene. Indeed, public confidence can be undermined when one orders the detention of an accused when it is unjustified. ”
He even finds it incomprehensible that the other defendants were released with much more flexible conditions than those which were ready to commit the six defendants.
They had even offered to submit to electronic monitoring service with gps bracelet and pay for it. But Dumas judge considers that this measure is not appropriate in this case. According to him, this kind of monitoring is useful in cases where risks are higher.
So Daniel Brunelle, Frederick Thompson, Simon Girard, Jeremiah Laliberte Beliveau, Jonathan Verret-Casaubon, Livernois and Alexandre Grenier, will all be released but with several conditions. They must commit themselves financially with or without filing a few thousand dollars each. Sureties (relatives, family members, spouses, etc.) have also agreed to commit themselves financially with large sums.
As other conditions, they must keep the peace, do not change your address, observe a curfew between 22 pm and 6 am, do not leave Quebec, surrender their passports to the authorities, do not communicate with co-defendants or with individuals who have criminal records or pending cases relating to narcotics.
They will also make an appearance at the Sûreté du Québec every two weeks, having no arms, no cell phone in their possession and not to go to bars.
More specific conditions were also imposed on some of them, depending on their personal profile and their alleged role in the organization.
They will return to court July 11 for further proceedings.
Note that these conditions have mostly been the subject of negotiations between the prosecution (Benoit Larouche and Nathalie Jomphe) and lawyers (Michel Lebrun for Girard and Thompson, Matthew Poliquin for me Brunelle, Mr. Provencher for Penelope Laliberté- Béliveau and Verret-Michel Dussault and Casaubon to Alexandre Grenier-Livernois). Mr. Dussault was absent on Wednesday, so it was represented by Mr Lebrun. The defendants are accused of gangsterism, conspiracy, production and trafficking in cannabis.
To date, there are a total of 39 individuals were arrested as part of Operation Rhea. This police raid had helped dismantle a major drug trafficking network operating in Mauricie.