A judge has ordered that a group with ties to the Freedom Convoy can be expelled from an Ottawa church.
On Friday, Ontario Superior Court of Justice Judge Sally Gomery granted a request by the owners of St. Brigid’s in Lowertown to evict the United People of Canada from the property.
Owner Patrick McDonald sought the court order to enforce the group’s eviction, claiming they failed to make payments of $100,000 as part of a conditional sale of the church, that they owed $10,000 in rent and that they broke the inheritance rules. Gomery’s decision sided with the owner.
“TUPOC materially breached the agreement by failing to make installment payments of $100,000 on August 10, 2022, despite two extensions of time granted by the plaintiffs,” she wrote.
The decision is sooner than expected – Gomery told the court on Monday that she would not have a decision until September 27.
Gomery also ruled that TUPOC must pay $53,000 in fees to the owners of the property within 30 days.
St. Brigid’s Church was conditionally sold to the United People of Canada on June 15, with the group planning to turn the historic property into an “embassy.” Documents obtained by CTV News show the sale fell through and the property was back on the market on August 12.
The band members insisted that the eviction notice served on them was not valid and that the band was not going to vacate the property.
McDonald’s attorney told reporters on September 2 that by the time of last Monday’s hearing, there would be two grounds on which TUPOC should be evicted: their non-payment of rent, as well as the end of the term waiting period of 30 days after termination of the group purchase and sale agreement.
Despite the eviction notice, the United People of Canada continues to hold events at the church. A Facebook post invited people to attend his weekly “community barbecue” on Sunday.
Lawyer Saron Gebresellassi, representing the United People of Canada, argued earlier this week that the group had a verbal agreement with McDonald’s and wanted to walk away from the deal due to media reports of the events that took place. were taking place on the property.
McDonald denied that there was any verbal agreement with TUPOC during cross-examination.
The church, located 1.3 kilometers from Parliament Hill, had been on the market since July 2021 and had a price tag of $5.95 million.
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