Gatineau enforcement vexing municipal courts

dear supporters,

welcome to a few observations from my audition in the Gatineau courthouse where judge Martin Gosselin presided over the session on 19 Fev 2024.

After listening to the proceedings of 4, 5 to 6 different cases (where I couldn’t help wondering, why this wasn’t gonna be held in a private room but in two big rooms, where strangers were listening to the details, cross-examination of the cases scheduled!), I didn’t count them, my case was finally postponed to the 3rd of June 2024 which makes it a bit more than 2 years after the fact!

From the looks of it (two female interpreters translated between English and French and French and Arabic, a third one couldn’t make it to his scheduled appearance because he was apparently stabbed with a knife in a Montreal courthouse while on the job, Judge Martin Gosselin relayed to the room (!)”),

many people on the defendant’s bank were immigrants, fighting back the encroaching police state and rampant and ubiquitous incompetence and brutality by Gatineau police officers, protesting their vexatious, bureaucratic and quota motivated ticketing.

One defendant questioned one police officer over 24 minutes whether or not he had measured 400 m truthfully, and in my books he managed to raise doubt in the credibility of that police officer, who could not exactly recount what address the location was, where the cruiser ticketed that vehicle operator. Apparently one is only supposed to drive a maximum of 400 m on a middle lane that was conceived to give both traffic directions a lane to turn left, like for example on Maloney Boulevard, where my partner of 14 years had a residence that I frequently visited and occupied.

In another case a man, who seemed a small business operator, communicated with the officers via his wife on the phone after having been stopped for having his hands on the phone – to me it sounded like his van was stopped when he had his hands on the phone –

nobody ever asked that, though!

yet I believe, he received a ticket for driving with his hands on his mobile phone – so also there it was very questionable when it came to the behaviour of the police officers and it was also relayed to the room that this man’s case had been postponed already a few times and he urged court to at least question his wife, who was not gonna be able to appear a third time before the court in vain.

Every single defendant was unhappy with the ticketing and criticized the scheduling of the court, having difficulties affording the fines and making time for the court sessions.

That prompted Judge Martin Gosselin at some point to nonchalantly say, “c’est la vie”, referencing to the fact that if the accused contest their infraction, one would have to go through the motion and the financial effort to lose that day of work without compensation and implying it should be worth that sacrifice, all the while sitting on six grand per month plus plus plus!

Especially in light of the fact that in Germany anybody attending court for whatever reason is entitled to a re-compensation if they lose work in order to testify in somebody’s case or defend their own case, that attitude seems inappropriate, and in the same way inappropriate and criminal, breaking constitutional laws as it is to coerce people into taking medical treatments and then tell them, “well, that was your choice”.

Getting justice cannot ever be a question of a big bank account but that’s exactly how it works today.

When the judge finally called me up to postpone my case, I expressed my regrets for the officers having had to appear in court in vain, but I also didn’t insist on questioning them, seeing that the court wanted to move on to other cases or finish the case that had started right before I was being called up.

I then did ask the judge if he was aware of any regulation like in Germany to re-compensate witnesses and defendants in judicial cases in front of the Gatineau municipal court, and he declined.

I also asked him if there was any way to submit evidence before the next hearing and he declined that as well, pointing out, that there might be disadvantages to disclose evidence to the prosecution beforehand.

Canadian born people were giving testimony, were witnesses to the scheduled cases, and the other Canadians in the room were the officers. I noticed 5 to 6 officers who were scheduled to be questioned in ticket infractions they had ordained.

I tried to say hello to the officer who arrested and handcuffed me and I wanted to shake his hands, and he declined to shake my hand, explaining he doesn’t shake hands at all – he acted very defensively and did not return my acknowledgement, looking at his body language and reaction. He cast off a vibe as if he had been uncomfortable having been called to question.

My last exchange with Justice Martin Gosselin ended with him assuring me, that on the 3rd of June 2024, the hearing of my case was gonna start the session.

To park nearby in order to transport citations of law that I had in piles of folders for the court, I paid seven dollars for the maximum time of two hours to park at that location which was going into the pockets of the city of Gatineau – and even so as always when I park in my unceded, unconquered territory, I had my permit to park in my front window shield, yet, when I came back to my vehicle after 4 PM, I found a ticket over $40 with a $15 fee, so now I need to come up with an additional $55 because I attended my own court date, and I took it upon myself to document piles and piles of applicable common law for the court all in vain.

It is absolutely impossible to substantiate why anybody would pay such a ticket.

Is that justice?

no !

that is the proverbial “just us”.

my main take away is the way Gatineau police officers ticket the public begs the question if they are properly trained or not rather running after a certain quote that they need to bring home every month.

Current practises are indeed frivolous to the public and vexatious to the courts – that has to stop – we need to educate our police ourselves – stand united!

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