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Archive for January, 2009

Protesters stop work on housing project

Posted By SUSAN GAMBLE, BRANTFORD EXPOSITOR STAFF [Ontario]
Friday, January 23, 2009

Workers will be off the job today at the Empire Homes housing development on Conklin Road after native protesters halted the project.

A representative of Empire Homes said the company voluntarily shut down work at the site Thursday and will remain off work today.

Mary Morrello, of Empire Communities, downplayed Thursday’s protest, saying the company is holding talks with native representatives.

“We are totally onside with the aboriginals and understand their plight 100 per cent but we also have a clean title to the lands, so there’s a bigger issue here than us,” she said.

“We wish we could help them but the issue is so big, it’s beyond us.”

Morrello said that, despite some of the catcalls from construction workers Thursday morning, the protest was peaceful.

“The workers were upset because this is their livelihood but the construction superintendent has spoken to the tradespeople. We just want peace.”

Construction workers yelled at about 15 to 20 protesters as a dozen police officers tried to form a line between the two groups.

About 50 to 60 Empire workers left the site, said protester Gene Johns.

“They’re not supposed to be digging here,” said Johns. “This is the third time we’ve been here and they won’t listen.”

Johns said he represents the Six Nations Confederacy and the community.

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Canada: Anarchists Sabotage Bank

[Submitted by anon on Sun, 2009-01-25 to anarchistnews.org]

On the 19th of January we sabotaged a Scotiabank location in Canada. We inserted glue and pins into two of the locks and poured glue over the keypads of the ATM machines and glued the cardslots after inserting homemade blank plastic cards. Scotiabank is a sponsor of the Security & Prosperity Partnership(SPP) which will be ratified in the year 2010 along with two other Capitalist Spectaclesthe G8 meetings & Olympic games taking place the same year.

The present/future they seek for us is one of complete social control through the use of “intelligent surveillance systems”, “biometric technoligies”, and hyper militarized borders. The city streets/buses/subways/work places are always under the watchful eye of the state/cops/bosses. This prison society we live in is not so different than the warehouses of cheap labour millions of people have been forced into across North Americas prison systems.

We would like to take this opportunity to express our most heartfelt solidarity with all those fighting this poisonous system and to make a proposal that we use the lead up year to these events as an opportunity to inspire a renewal and intensity of actions that we saw throughout Canada the last two years. It’s not that we think excuses for action are necessary considering the state of things but a coordinated year of creative & diverse actions could be a powerful expression of our collective anger and desires for a brighter future. We hope this call reaches you in good spirits and look forward to your responses.

Never let the fuckers rest!

-Anonymous

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Beauval mayor criticizes RCMP handling of teen’s escape
Calls Mounties’ reaction ‘on the edge of incompetence’

Tuesday, January 13, 2009
CBC News [Saskatchewan]

The RCMP [Royal Canadian Mounted Police] should have notified people sooner about the escape of teenager in custody who was later found frozen to death, the mayor of a northern Saskatchewan town says.

“I would call it on the edge of incompetence,” Beauval Mayor Alex Maurice said.

The 19-year-old from the Canoe Lake First Nation in the province’s northwest was arrested early Saturday morning after RCMP received a complaint of an intoxicated person.

According to police, the man was taken to the detachment in Beauval and when the arresting officer left the man alone for a minute in the back of the car, the man ran off.

Temperatures were well below freezing at the time.

The RCMP said they immediately searched for more than an hour. They then switched gears and started knocking on doors, but there was no sign of the man.

Members of the Canoe Lake First Nation formed a search party the next day and found the body of the man — an apparent victim of the cold — on a snowmobile trail seven kilometres from town.

The man’s name hasn’t been released.

An autopsy has been ordered. It’s not believed there was foul play, police said.

Maurice said RCMP should have notified locals sooner. The man’s family didn’t find out he had been missing for over 12 hours, he said.

If people had known, a search party could have been organized sooner, he said.

“I don’t think he was a dangerous offender or anything, and in the middle of winter, common sense should have prevailed on the part of the RCMP,” Maurice said.

Maurice accused the RCMP of ignoring local trackers who believed the man had walked out of town.

“Within an hour and a half, these Canoe Lake elders and the people who did the search party, within an hour and a half of starting the search party, they found him frozen to death,” he said.

An outside police force will be brought in to oversee the investigation.

Beauval is about 450 kilometres north of Saskatoon.

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Firebombing mystifies former oil sands executive

KATHERINE O’NEILL
The Globe and Mail
January 13, 2009

EDMONTON [Alberta] — A former top oil executive and his wife are searching for answers after the firebombing of their Edmonton home on the weekend left them homeless.

“My wife and I are deeply saddened by the loss of our home and our personal possessions,” Jim Carter, a former Syncrude Canada Ltd. president and chief operating officer, said in a statement yesterday.

“At the moment, we have very little information about what may have transpired or why,” Mr. Carter said.

Patrycia Thenu, an Edmonton police spokeswoman, said investigators are still hunting for a motive in the arson case, including possible connections to eco-terrorism. “Nothing has been ruled out,” she said.

Edmonton police revealed yesterday that several Molotov cocktails were recovered inside the charred remains of the Carters’ luxury home in a southwest Edmonton neighbourhood.

A witness reported seeing four youths running from the area at the time the fire began on Saturday around 8 p.m., according to police.

Nobody was in the two-storey home at the time of the blaze, and damage is estimated at $850,000.

Ms. Thenu said investigators have also not found any evidence linking this case to deliberate fire-bombings in another Edmonton neighbourhood last year.

Mr. Carter and his wife, Lorraine Bray, a psychologist, are well known in Edmonton and have six grown children.

Mr. Carter worked for Syncrude, one of Alberta’s largest oil sands companies, for 27 years before retiring in 2007. The mining industry veteran is credited with helping to build Alberta’s oil sands industry.

Last year, the provincial government asked him to chair a council studying how carbon capture and storage technology can be better used in Alberta.

The province is under intense pressure from environmental groups to solve the problem of its so-called dirty oil and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Paul Joosse, a University of Alberta researcher and eco-terrorism expert, said because of Mr. Carter’s deep connections to the oil industry, it’s wise for the police to not rule out environmental extremism.

However, he said it’s still too early in the investigation to jump to conclusions, and that eco-terrorism attacks of this nature against oil executives in Canada are unheard of.

Mr. Joosse noted that one U.S. environmental group uses arson in its attacks.

However, he added that it, along with other environmental groups, routinely claim responsibility for their actions.

“That hasn’t happened here,” he said.

Edmonton-based Greenpeace Canada activist Mike Hudema agrees that there are no tell-tale signs yet that Mr. Carter and his wife were targeted because of his links to the oil industry.

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Gangs clash in Manitoba prison riot

Jan 12, 2009
THE CANADIAN PRESS

WINNIPEG – Long-simmering tensions between two criminal gangs were behind a riot at a federal medium-security prison in Manitoba, says the Winnipeg Free Press.

The melee Saturday night seriously injured four inmates and damaged a living unit that houses 100 prisoners at Stony Mountain Institute.

The Free Press reports that inmates – some wearing masks – set fires, stabbed their fellows and threw garbage cans at corrections officers, who battled back with pepper spray and displayed their shotguns.

It took almost six hours to bring the rioting inmates under control.

The Free Press quotes sources as saying the mood at Stony Mountain had been tense since New Year’s Eve when corrections officers seized 36 prison-made knives. The penitentiary was locked down for two days at that time.

The sources say the main prison rivalry is between the Manitoba Warriors and the Native Syndicate.

On Saturday, a penitentiary intelligence officer received word something was planned for the prison’s recreational hall, so extra officers were sent in as a precaution, a prison source told the Free Press.

But the planned confrontation was only partly averted. One group of inmates managed to seize control of a kiosk that regulates access to all the cells on one of the living units. That led to a battle with corrections officers who attempted to regain control of the situation.

“Staff had to withdraw. The unit was overrun by inmates,” the source said. “Staff had to use a huge amount of pepper spray. There were fires going and some of the inmates had their faces covered (with balaclavas). They were throwing garbage cans.”

Prison officials have declined to discuss many details of what happened.

But Stony Mountain spokesman Guy Langlois did say Sunday that after gaining control of the living unit, the inmates barricaded themselves inside and blocked off the main entry as well as the emergency exit.

The institution then called in its emergency response team, a unit specially trained to control riots and other disturbances, he said.

The prison, about 25 kilometres north of Winnipeg, is expected to remain in lockdown for at least a few days.

No staff members were hurt. Langlois said the prisoners in hospital appeared to have been stabbed or beaten.

“They’re trying to call this an incident, but it’s a riot,” a penitentiary source said. “The place is trashed.”

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Guelph, Ontario: Bank Sabotage!

[Submitted by anon on Mon, 2009-01-12 to anarchistnews.org]

January 10th, 2009

The Bank of Montreal at the corner of Edinburgh and Speedvale was attacked in the evening.

We filled the card slot of the two ATM’s with silicone, disabling the machine.
Banks finance development and repression, from new police stations to urban sprawl.

This action is in solidarity with the vandals who attacked a McDonalds a few weeks ago in Guelph, with the struggle of the Mohawk Nation against the police, with the rebels in Greece and Oakland, and with bank robber Ronnie Easterbrook ( 78 ) who is in grave condition after 3 weeks of ongoing hunger strike.

Sabotage continues against development and repression!

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RCMP probing new B.C. pipeline bombing

The Canadian Press
January 5, 2009

TOMSLAKE, B.C. — EnCana’s natural gas infrastructure in northern British Columbia has been the target of a fourth explosion, but officials with the Calgary-based energy giant still don’t know why it is the focus of a bomber’s anger.

Gas line workers discovered a partially destroyed metering shed on Sunday at a wellhead near the community of Tomslake, southeast of Dawson Creek on the eastern side of the Rocky Mountains.

There was no damage to the wellhead and no leak, said a spokesman with EnCana.

It’s the fourth attack in three months on EnCana natural gas operations in the area, located about 1,200 kilometres northeast of Vancouver near the B.C.-Alberta boundary.

The blasts began on Oct. 12, when a pipeline was damaged. Another pipeline was hit on Oct. 16, causing a small leak, and an explosion at a wellhead on Oct. 31 also caused a leak.

The first three explosions involved pipelines or wellheads carrying sour gas — which contains toxic hydrogen sulphide.

EnCana spokesman Alan Boras said it’s not clear whether the latest wellhead targeted also contains sour gas, but he said in any event all of the operations in the area only contain small amounts of hydrogen sulphide.

“Typically the wells in that area contain a trace,” said Mr. Boras.

The attacks revealed local anxiety about the area’s rapidly growing natural gas industry.

They were preceded by a threatening letter demanding oil and gas operations be stopped, prompting the RCMP to speculate that the explosions are likely the work of someone from the area with a grudge against EnCana.

EnCana has long insisted it has a positive relationship with locals, and Mr. Boras said the company still doesn’t know why it’s been targeted.

“Generally speaking, the relationship has been very good,” said Mr. Boras.

“From time to time, obviously people have concerns, but that’s part of the normal course of business but we work hard to understand their concerns.”

Last month, the company announced it had set up a dedicated telephone line so whoever is responsible for the explosions could call to discuss their concerns.

Mr. Boras said he couldn’t say whether anyone took the company up on the offer because that would be part of the police investigation.

Also last month, police released eight video surveillance images from a local drug store taken on the day the letter was mailed in October.

Seven of the eight people have since been identified and ruled out as suspects, while the identity of the eighth, a woman, is still unknown.

There are more than 4,000 producing oil and gas wells in British Columbia, all in the northeastern part of the province.

The industry has seen massive growth since the mid-90s, with provincial revenues jumping from $370-million in 1996 to $2.5-billion in 2006 — mostly related to natural gas projects.

The explosions brought back memories of Wiebo Ludwig’s campaign against Alberta’s oil patch in the 1990s.

The Alberta farmer, who blamed the industry for hurting his family, his land and his livestock, spent nearly two years in prison for charges related to bombings and vandalism.

Police said they have spoken with Ludwig as part of their investigation, but don’t consider him a suspect.

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