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Tyee Poll: Would You Risk Arrest to Protest Kinder Morgan’s Pipeline Expansion?

B.C. Supreme Court Justice Kenneth Affleck, who granted the injunction to keep pipeline protesters away from Kinder Morgan’s site in Burnaby, recommended April 9 that the “public nature of the breaches warranted criminal sanction.”

Tyee intern reporter Abi Hayward recently reported on what it means to be charged with civil contempt of court versus criminal contempt of court. Criminal contempt of court is unique in Canadian law because it is the only offence that isn’t part of the Criminal Code, lying under common law instead. Those who are convicted of criminal contempt are unlikely to receive a criminal record, though a record may appear in police databases.

Crown counsel Trevor Shaw said the sentencing position for violating this Kinder Morgan injunction is a $500 fine, though there are considerations, such as whether they acted peacefully and whether they have other convictions for administration of justice offences.

In Hayward’s Tyee story, freelance journalist Tom Sandborn said being arrested was part of the package of civil disobedience: “You’re willing to take a hit in order to wake people up and stand in solidarity with other people.”

We’re wondering what you would do.

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Please note that Tyee Barometer polls are only intended as a quick and engaging non-scientific snapshot of our readers' opinions on various topics that fit with The Tyee's very broad editorial mandate. They are not intended to be seen as a representative sampling of BC opinion.

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