Politician says he pleaded guilty to contempt charge in pipeline protest

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VANCOUVER, B.C. – A member of Parliament has pleaded guilty to a criminal contempt of court charge after he was arrested when he joined a protest against the expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline in Burnaby, B.C.

New Democrat Kennedy Stewart says he pleaded guilty to the charge in B.C. Supreme Court today and was ordered to pay a fine of $500 by Friday.

The B.C. Prosecution Service says special prosecutors determined the cases of Kennedy and Green party Leader Elizabeth May should proceed as criminal contempt charges after they were arrested at the Kinder Morgan work site on March 23.

Special prosecutors were appointed after Justice Kenneth Affleck called for criminal contempt charges to be laid against demonstrators alleged to have violated a court injunction preventing protests at Kinder Morgan’s pipeline terminal in Burnaby.

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Stewart recently announced he was stepping down as the MP for Burnaby South to run as an independent candidate in this fall’s mayoral race in Vancouver.

May is scheduled to appear in court on May 28.

Dozens of people have been arrested for protesting against the pipeline expansion, which would triple the flow of heavy oil products from Edmonton to Burnaby.

(THE CANADIAN PRESS)

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