Courtroom rabble rouser granted internet access in jail

Courtroom rabble rouser granted internet access in jail

That access is intended to help Louie build his case in defence of several charges for gun smuggling

In order to build his case, a man who is representing himself and whose pretrial proceedings have been marked by resistance and bluster will be granted the use of internet in the Okanagan Correctional Centre, where he’s being held.

Alex Louie was arrested on Feb. 1 this year after allegedly attempting to smuggle two handguns into the country. The Canadian Border Security Agency said border agents found a pair of Hi-Point CF-380 handguns in his vehicle, despite his claim that he had no weapons at the border crossing.

Since his arrest Louie has been in custody, with court appearances marked by verbal attempts to arrest the judge and Crown lawyers for the “cultural genocide of (his) people,” a tune Louie continued to hum during a Monday morning scheduling hearing.

“We’re dealing with eight counts, here, an eight-count indictment dealing with importing—” Justice Gary Weatherill began while Louie cited “the theft of land” of First Nations people, among other issues.

“I’m here to deal with you, and I’m here to deal with the Crown when it comes to subject matter jurisdiction of the assumed trust relationship that you guys continue to assume, this de facto relationship,” Louie rebutted.

“You need to understand where your jurisdiction comes from. It comes from the enforced registration of a person in the name of Alex Louie, which is based on cultural genocide of a people.”

Related: Man calls for judge’s arrest, gets trial date

Louie is to undergo trial for two counts each of the unauthorized import of firearms, exchanging, selling or purchasing illegally imported goods, smuggling goods into Canada and possessing firearms without a licence or registration, along with one count of a false or deceptive statement on the import of goods.

Representing himself, Louie told the court that he had some documents he wished to provide the judge and Crown counsel, noting that without access to the internet, he has been impeded in his access to resources. Holding up inch-thick stacks of papers for the judge, the Crown and himself, he said he was also forced to handwrite each of his submissions.

“This is four or five months of writing. I have to write it three times, and I have to do drafts, so I have to write it … four or five times before and end product comes out,” Louie said. “The unfortunate reality is I don’t have the access like you guys have. You guys have all the law libraries, all the annotated versions of courtroom procedures.”

Weatherill asked Louie if he had access to legal aid, but Louie said he didn’t need it.

“When it comes to legal aid, there again, the oath that you guys swear, you guys don’t work for us. You do not protect our interest,” he said. “I don’t need help; I need access.”

Louie told the court he had asked “on numerous occasions” for access to the Internet but said he has been denied that access. Weatherill said he believed the OCC, “a brand new facility,” should have access to the internet.

“I’ve made the order that you’re entitled to have access to the internet for that purpose, for the purpose of defending yourself in this case,” Weatherill said. “You should be able to get that information you seek within reason to defend these charges.”

The fix-date hearing for Louie was put off until Tuesday morning, with Crown counsel pushing for a late-August trial date. The trial is expected to run four to five days.

Penticton Law Courts

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Esa Carriere, 23, was the victim of a 2018 Canada Day homicide. (File)
Youth sentenced in Kelowna Canada Day killing

Young woman pleaded guilty to lesser assault charge, sentenced to 15-month intensive support and supervision program

A rendering of UBC’s planned downtown Kelowna campus. (Contributed)
Kelowna’s new downtown campus to help alleviate UBCO’s space crunch

The sizable development is anticipated to be completed by the fall 2024 semester

Kelowna International Airport. (Contributed)
Contactless parking payment available at YLW

Kelowna International Airport parking now compatible with the PayByPhone application

Good Samaritan Mountainview Village located at 1540 KLO Road in Kelowna. (Good Samaritan Society)
Outbreak at Kelowna long term care home declared over

Penticton, Kelowna long term care home outbreaks declared over Jan. 20

The BC SPCA is adapting its fundraising after cancelling events due to COVID-19 restrictions. (Twila Amato - Black Press Media)
BC SPCA gets creative with fundraising as pandemic continues

The non-profit’s in-person fundraising events all had to be cancelled due to COVID-19 restrictions

Interior Health has declared the Cariboo Chilcotin a community cluster. (Angie Mindus photo)
Interior Health declares Cariboo Chilcotin region a COVID-19 cluster, 215 cases since Jan. 1

Most cases are related to transmission at social events and gatherings in Williams Lake

Vernon Fire Rescue Services responded to a single-vehicle rollover Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021, after a vehicle came into contact with a pedestrian light pole at Kalamalka Lake Road and 14th Avenue. (Brendan Shykora - Morning Star)
Minor injuries in rollover after vehicle hits Vernon crosswalk pole

The vehicle flipped onto its side, closing Kalamalka Lake Road

Penticton city council heard from Dhorea Ramanula, of Paid Employment for People with Lived Experiences Tuesday, Jan. 19. Ramanula’s organization has operated public washrooms in Kelowna staffed by community support workers since April, she says Penticton could benefit from a similar facility. (Michael Rodriguez - Kelowna Capital News)
Penticton interested in new public washroom concept to combat vandalism

Public washrooms with on-site support staff have been operating in Kelowna since April

Canada Post had remove a lot of letter boxes around Penticton after they were vandalized. This letter box at the United Church on Main St. remains unscathed. (Monique Tamminga Western News)
Street mailbox vandals strike Penticton drop boxes

Canada Post had to remove a bunch of the vandalized units

Vernon's Noric House long-term care facility is dealing with an influenza outbreak amid the COVID-19 pandemic. (File photo)
Two more deaths at Vernon care home

Noric House case numbers remain steady, but death toll rises

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A petition to spare the Mount Rose Swanson area from logging later this year has eclipsed 21,000 signatures as of Jan. 20, 2021. (Rose Swanson Mountain/Facebook)
Controversial logging will cut 4% of ‘sensitive’ Armstrong forest area: Ministry

A petition to spare the Rose Swanson area from logging has eclipsed 21,000 signatures

Most Read