300-plus G20 suspects to cram Toronto courthouse

Aug. 23

More than 300 people charged with offences relating to the G20 protests will be appearing in a packed Toronto courthouse Monday.

The scene is expected to be a chaotic one as the suspects, their families, supporters, lawyers and various other protest groups and demonstrators descend on the courthouse in north Toronto.

It is expected to be one of the largest mass court appearances the city has ever seen.

All of those appearing in court Monday have already been called before a judge in recent months to face their charges, and were told to return to court today.

A table has been set up outside the courthouse, and those who arrive are being assigned a colour-coded card indicating one of three courtrooms where they are to appear.

At one point Monday morning a bus from Quebec, apparently carrying a group of people charged with G20 offences, pulled into the courthouse parking lot.

There will be no trial proceedings Monday. Instead, those charged will receive disclosure about the allegations against them and information about the next step in their legal proceedings.

It is expected to take hours for the judges in the various courtrooms to get through their dockets.

Toronto Police G20 investigator Det. Sgt. Gary Giroux said Sunday the goal is to process as many people as possible.

“If you’re out (of custody) you’ll be appearing. If you’re in you’re appearing physically, in custody or by video,” he said.

Most of those appearing Monday were arrested at a protest at Queen’s Park on June 26 when police stormed the area and rounded up dozens of suspects.

Some suspected ringleaders are also appearing Monday. They are charged with conspiracy to assault and obstruct police.

About 20 others who were rounded up after police released photos and asked for help from the public, will also appear Monday.

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