Alberta prosecuting Coutts blockade 'leaders' in Lethbridge

Ezra Levant lays out Rebel News' plan to cover the upcoming trial of the 'Coutts Three', the so-called leaders of the 2022 border blockade protest which opposed COVID-19 restrictions, and how you can help fund their legal defence.

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We are back in Lethbridge, Alberta, at the courthouse where the three men police say were the "leadership" group behind the 2022 Coutts border blockade are set for a pre-trial hearing.

That protest saw truckers shut down the crossing between Canada and the United States in protest of COVID-19 restrictions, much like the Freedom Convoy in Ottawa, which was occurring at the same time.

On the eve of Justin Trudeau's decision to invoke the Emergencies Act, the Coutts border blockade came to an end. At the end of the protest, a number of individuals were given charges in response to the demonstration.

We're here today at the Lethbridge courthouse for a pre-trial hearing of what's come to be known as the 'Coutts Three', a trial similar to the one faced by Freedom Convoy organizer Tamara Lich in Ottawa.

While four other men, dubbed the 'Coutts Four', faced serious charges, the Coutts Three — Marco Van Huigenbos, Alex Van Herk and George Janzen — were a part of the "trucker's council," which sort of served as an ad hoc governance group of the blockade.

Like Tamara Lich, their trial is very political, and much like her, they've also been charged with various mischief-like offences. The lead prosecutor in the Coutts Three case, Steven Johnston, is an obsessed man with a vendetta.

He was the same prosecutor who went after Pastor Artur Pawlowski. He’s emotional, he’s thin-skinned and it’s obviously personal for him. He loved the lockdowns. It gave him power.

The three men on trial could not be more different; they’re local men, community men, family men. Two of the men aren’t even truckers — they’re citizens who decided they needed to take a peaceful stand again an authoritarian government. And I’m glad they did.

Rebel News is doing two things with this case: first, we are covering their trial journalistically. You can follow all of our reports on the story at

Second, we're crowdfunding each of the three men's lawyers through The Democracy Fund. You can help chip in a tax-receipt eligible donation to cover the costs of their legal counsel at that same website,

Previewing the pre-trial hearings, Syd Fizzard, who was part of our Rebel team embedded within the Coutts blockade for more than two weeks, says the “alleged key participants may have just been the most vocal of the bunch that were trapped there” by the police checkpoint that barred entry into — or out of — the protest zone.

Robert Kraychik, who has been diligently covering Tamara Lich's ongoing trial in Ottawa, says he expects there to be a number of similarities between what he's seen in Ottawa and what lies ahead in Lethbridge. He's seen first-hand how police and prosecutors can be politicized to "get" an opponent of the state.

“If that's true, then we'll see that these men are being targeted with these charges, including mischief and some other lower-level charges, because of their prominent roles in order to send a message,” Robert says.

Our team will be here to report on the trial, but the case is covered by a publication ban. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, because it can prevent potential jurors from forming opinions about untested evidence.

Robert will be here to cover every day of the Coutts Three hearings, and other trials emanating from that momentous event. And Sydney, who spent two weeks at the blockade with the men, will continue his work telling their stories — including three mini-documentaries we’re working on right now.

If you'd like to help cover the cost of our economy-class flights and accommodations, you can help support our independent journalism on that same page.

And if you'd like to help fund the legal defence for the Coutts Three, you can do that on the very same page. 

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