joel bitar surrenders to toronto police to face charges related to g20 protests

by Tim Phillips

On February 14, federal marshals arrested activist Joel Bitar in New York. Canadian authorities had requested Bitar’s extradition in October 2012 for his alleged involvement in property destruction during the June 2010 G20 protests in Toronto. According to today’s National Post article,

The G20 riots in June 2010 — defined by images of burning police cars and black-clad protesters smashing store windows — triggered the largest mass arrest in Canadian history and an ensuing wave of civil-rights complaints.

Although Bitar was arrested in Toronto in June 2010, he was released without charges. Six days after his arrest this February, Bitar was released from custody on $500,000 bail and transferred to house arrest, on the condition that he wear an electronic monitoring device. Today he returned to Canada voluntarily and surrendered to Toronto police.

On February 21, federal marshals arrested another U.S. activist, Dane Rossman, for allegedly committing crimes during the G20 protests. (Bitar and Rossman are two of five activists Canadian authorities sought to have extradited to face such charges.) Unlike Bitar, Rossman was denied bail. His extradition hearing was scheduled for today.

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