Following weeks of protests in Canada’s capital city of Ottawa, one of the lead organizers of the “Freedom Convoy” has been arrested, multiple online reports suggest.
The arrest comes several weeks after the trucker-led convoy descended upon Ottawa’s downtown core. Numerous truckers remain encamped despite Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s decision to invoke the Emergencies Act to end the protests.
According to multiple reports, including a photograph of the apparent arrest, Chris Barber, a chief “Freedom Convoy” organizer, was taken into police custody on Albert Street Thursday evening.
CTV National News correspondent Glen McGregor published a photograph of the apparent arrest with the caption: “Protest organizer Chris Barber taken into police custody on Albert Street, in the last hour.”
It remains unclear what Barber has been charged with, and Ottawa police have not yet released a statement.
The apparent arrests comes days after protest organizer Tamara Lich discussed the possibility of going to prison in a True North interview on Feb. 7.
CBC substantiated reports of Barber’s arrest:
Barber, who is currently in police custody and is expected to face criminal charges, has been described as one of the key leaders of the protest in Ottawa, which has now hit the three-week mark.
Barber is also one of three protest organizers named in the class action lawsuit filed with the Ontario Superior Court of Justice by lawyer Paul Champ on behalf of his client, 21-year-old public servant Zexi Li.
Earlier this month, Barber expressed empathy for residents of Ottawa affected by the protests.
“We understand your frustration and genuinely wish there was another way for us to get our message across, but the responsibility for your inconvenience lies squarely on the shoulders of politicians who have [preferred] to vilify and call us names rather than engage in respectful, serious dialogue," Barber said.