Thanks for your interest in this case.
For more info about Bruce Montague, please visit his website: BruceMontague.ca - About - Of Freedom and Tyranny
From the website:
determined to expose the constitutional violations in the Canadian Firearms Act. After being charged, mounting a constiutional challenge and appealing to the Supreme Court of Canada, Montague's case was dismissed without reasons. The Montagues then face an unexpected twist -- the confiscation of their home and property by the Ontario government.
Though the case has shifted focus as the crown pursues the next step in its confiscation agenda, the Montagues deserve our continued support as they fight to keep their home and property.
YOU COULD BE NEXT! Canada is undergoing a quiet revolution and your fundamental rights and freedoms are at stake! View Original Index Page »
On another site:
Bruce Montague Case Sentencing Update
Bruce Montague Case Sentencing Update
By Christopher di Armani
Bruce Montague's sentencing hearing on 26 firearms-related charges completed March 18, 2006 with Justice John Wright sentencing Bruce Montague to 18 months in jail. Bruce's wife Donna Montague was found innocent of careless storage, and was given six months probation for owning firearms without a license.
Lawyer Douglas Christie argued that Montague should be sentenced similar to Ryerson Knight, the Victoria gun collector who pled guilty to 19 firearms charges after a search of his home yielded 662 firearms. The majority of Knight's firearms were pre-1950 military arms, and included handguns, fully-automatic firearms, tear-gas grenades, and silencers. Knight received a conditional sentence of two years less a day, of which the first nine months is being served under house arrest.
The foreman of the jury that convicted Mr. Montague wanted to address the court to offer the jury's recommendation that Montague serve no jail time. Justice Wright denied him, saying his wishes were irrelevant. The jury's job is to convict or acquit, the judge's job is to impose sentence, he said.
When given the opportunity to address the court, Bruce Montague said he would accept whatever sentence the judge deemed appropriate.
You've taken everything we have, Donna Montague said. You've stolen money from us that nobody will even investigate, you've taken our life savings in the form of our gun collection, you've taken my husband and my children's father, and you've taken our family home. You have utterly destroyed a family for absolutely no good reason. It's disgusting. My forefathers fought for this country through three wars, and now you are destroying the antique firearms they used to defend Canada in the War of 1812 and the Fenian Raids. Our forefathers must be rolling over in their graves. They never fought for this kind of Canada!
After sentence was handed down, Bruce was immediately taken into custody and transferred to the Kenora Remand Centre. Katey Montague simply stood still, tears in her eyes as she watched her father taken away by two police officers.
Writer and freedom fighter Pierre Lemieux, already embroiled in his own challenge of the Firearms Act (see sidebar Pierre Lemieux) traveled from his home in Lac-Saguay, Quebec to Dryden, Ontario to research the history of Bruce's legal battle and interview the family on video.
After the sentencing hearing Donna and Katey Montague were driven home by a family friend, and Donna noted that "[Sergeant] Meeks (the arresting officer in the case) followed us all the way. We even pulled to the right hand in the passing zones and slowed below 80km/hr. He didn't pass until we got to Eaton Rugby Rd."
Meeks was, no doubt, just making sure they returned home safely, and did not mean to cause any further alarm.
Charges under the Firearms Act can be dealt with in two ways: summary conviction or indictable offence. The difference is the penalties and how those penalties are applied. See sidebar "Types of Offences". Bruce's sentence runs concurrently, and sentences for each conviction are noted in the sidebar "Sentencing In Brief".
In an interview Donna Montague said "I just phoned the jail to see if and when we can visit Bruce. I was told that he is still in segregation. The guard told me that Bruce really doesn't belong there and that they have him in segregation for his own protection. I'm to phone tomorrow at lunch to see what his visiting hours are."
Currently Montague is being held in a segregation cell and is not allowed shoes, reading material of any kind, not even a pen and paper. He is, so far, being refused access to the telephone because he refuses to give a blood sample.
Of the sentence and the justice system, Bill Cunningham wrote online, "We don't have a Justice system in Canada, we have a revolving door Legal Industry that keeps putting REAL criminals back on the street where they can keep the wheels of this legal industry moving, and it just makes me sick!!!"
Both the pre-sentencing report created by Bert Sombrutsku and Justice Wright's sentencing report made a point of chastising Mr. Montague for "using" his daughter to promote his ideas in the series of YouTube videos entitled Katey's Firearms Facts.
The pre-sentence report says: "To publicly assert his ideas via the internet, using his daughter, may be considered as being exploitative..." In his sentencing report Justice Wright stated: "He has also exercised poor taste in involving his young daughter in his campaign for the right to bear arms."
It is clear that neither man questioned Bruce about Katey's videos. It is equally clear they never bothered to ask Katey either, as she would have assuredly set them straight. Katey wanted to help her father. She did that the only way she knew how, by using the tools and technology of her generation to promote awareness of her father's case.
“There is no legal justification for disobeying the law,” Wright said in his written report. He suggested that Montague and others failed to try alternatives to breaking the law to oppose the Firearms Act. Justice Wright appears to be unaware of the history of the Canadian Unregistered Firearms Owners Association and their varied and repeated efforts to get their concerns addressed.
Multiple requests were delivered to both provincial and federal governments asking them to refer Criminal Code Chapter 39, the Firearms Act, to the Supreme Court as a civil rights abuse case. The few Attorney Generals to respond suggested that since civil rights are individual rights, provincial governments would not interfere between the state and the individual.
Former Saskatchewan Minister of Justice Frank Quennell wrote to Joe Gingrich, a CUFOA member, "[t]he rights guaranteed by the Charter are individual in nature, and their application will depend heavily on the facts of a particular case. The Government's position is that Charter-based challenges are best brought by individuals, who can assert their own rights, rather than by the Government."
With that notion in mind, the Montague family, Bruce's case management team and lawyer Douglas Christie will continue the appeals process. It is a long legal road ahead, and it will be costly. To all those who have helped financially so far, the Montague family is eternally grateful.
If you would like to help Donna and Katey Montague, the Dryden IGA store will accept credit card purchases of gift certificates for the Montague family. Please call 807-221-2400 if you would like to help the family in this way. The store will call the family to let them know your gift certificate is waiting for them.
If you would like to make a donation to help the Montague's continue the legal battle for all our rights to the Supreme Court, you can donate through the website at BruceMontague.ca - About - Of Freedom and Tyranny
, or by mailing donations directly to "Bruce Montague Scrap C-68 Fund" c/o Roger Nordlund, Trustee, RR#2, Site 211, Box 7, Dryden, Ontario, P8N 2Y5.
Sidebar: Pierre Lemieux
Pierre's battle with the state goes back to 1996, when Pierre applied for the new FAC, and then 2001, when he applied for a firearms license under the new Firearms Act. In these two applications, he refused to answer questions he deemed none of the state's business, such as questions about his love life. In both cases, the application was granted.
His 2001 firearms license has now expired, despite Pierre's attempt to renew it. On the renewal form, he again refused to answer intrusive questions, but this time the state disallowed his application, instead sending him a notice of refusal and revoking all his firearm registration certificates. Pierre's battle continues and he is now appealing the refusal and challenging the constitutionality of the “law”.
For more information on Pierre's battle, please visit his information page on this issue at Centre des armes à feu Canada: Nous sommes Police Canada | Canada FirearmsCentre:We are Police Canada
, and also his website Canada Travel Blog
, with ongoing news, columns, videos and discussions of liberty.
Summary, Indictable and Hybrid Offences
Summary conviction offences cover the most minor offences in the Criminal Code. Unless specified otherwise, a summary conviction offence carries a maximum fine of $2,000, six months in jail or both.
An indictable offence is more serious than a summary conviction offence, and usually carries greater penalties. Many indictable offences, including those in the Firearms Act, have minimum mandatory sentences. If prosecuted by indictment you are generally entitled to trial by jury.
Many violations of the Firearms Act are "hybrid offences". They can be prosecuted either by summary conviction or indictment. The Crown "elects" the mode of prosecution. Hybrid offences are considered indictable until the Crown makes its election.
In the Montague case, the Crown chose to proceed by indictment for all charges.
Concurrent sentencing means all sentences are served at the same time. If he had been given consecutive sentences, then each sentence would have to be served individually, one after another.
Sentencing In Brief
As written in the unofficial Sentencing Report available at BruceMontague.ca - About - Of Freedom and Tyranny
, Bruce Montague was sentenced as follows:
For six counts of “storing the two non-restricted firearms in a not unloaded condition” - one year probation
For possession of firearms without a license and his “Deliberate defiance of the law in this respect” - six months imprisonment
For one count of possession of a silenced .22 caliber pistol – 12 months;
For one count of “possession of a prohibited device” – 90 day sentence to be served in the community;
For three counts of “possession of oversize magazines” – 90 day sentence to be served in the community;
For nine counts of “possession of loaded prohibited or restricted firearms or prohibited firearms with ammunition readily accessible” – 12 months;
For three counts of “altering a firearm to fire automatically” - 18 months.
For four counts of “the deliberate defacing or removal of a serial number” – 12 months;
All sentences are to run concurrent, and all probation or suspended sentences commence at the completion of incarceration.
Bruce Montague also has a lifetime firearms prohibition against him.
Christopher di Armani is a freelance writer and filmmaker who resides in Lytton, BC, Canada, with his wife Lynda and their two dogs, Koda and Tuco.
Christopher can be contacted at christopher(at)diArmani.com or diArmani.com: Our Poison-Tipped Pens are Sharper Than the Mightiest of Swords.
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