By Mariana Ionova
Six of the 17 alleged ringleaders of the G20 protests pled guilty on Tuesday as part of an agreement that will see charges against the remaining accused dropped.
Among the defendants pleading guilty was Alex Hundert, 31, who was re-arrested and jailed last September after a judge ruled his participation in a panel discussion at Ryerson violated his bail conditions.
Hundert and his co-accused were initially arrested last year and blamed for organizing the violent demonstrations that overtook the city during the G20 summit on June 26, 2010. They were charged with conspiracy related to the protests after a year-long undercover police investigation.
His bail conditions stated he was prohibited from attending any demonstrations and speaking at protests. But, after speaking at a G20-related panel at Ryerson in September 2010, Hundert was arrested and kept in custody until Jan. 24.
Judy Rebick, the Canadian Auto Workers (CAW)-Sam Gindin Chair in Social Justice and Democracy at the time, helped organize the panel and said the arrest was a “denial of [Hundert’s] freedom of speech.”
“His condition was that he couldn’t go on a demonstration. It wasn’t a demonstration, it was a university panel,” Rebick said. “They broke his bail conditions because he spoke about it. To me, it was outrageous. I never though something like that could happen in this country.”
Under Tuesday’s plea agreement, the six accused pled guilty to counselling to commit an indictable offense, a lesser crime bearing a lighter sentence.
“Sentencing hearings are yet to happen but the Crown and defense council have all made joint submissions on sentencing,” said Hundert. He added that three of his co-accused will have sentencing hearings within a week, while he and the remaining two will have their hearings within the next few months.
Hundert said his sentence would amount to 20 months with a deduction for time he has already served. He served five months in the Toronto West Detention Centre and another five months under house arrest. This means that approximately six and a half months will be deducted from his sentence.