The Gidimt’en Checkpoint says it has filed a notice of civil claim against the RCMP, B.C’s Minister of Justice, Coastal GasLink and Forsythe, the private security contractor.
The lawsuit claims that police have threatened and made unlawful arrests, demanded identification from guests, blocked visitors, entered village site and assaulted and battered visitors.
It also says that high beams and spotlights were shone into residential buildings, awakened and harassed sleeping residents , seized equipment and property by the Gidimt’en, opened doors to residential buildings and followed individuals on remote forest service roads.
According to a news release the checkpoint said RCMP’s Community Industry Response Group accompanied by Forsythe have entered the area more than 700 times.
The lawsuit added that Forsythe has also deployed ex-law enforcement to conduct 24 hour surveillance, continually filmed residents and children on Gidimt’en villages and shared the information with police.
“The police tactics used on Gidimt’en territory have had no lawful purpose or bases. They have been unreasonable and excessive, discriminatory on the basis of race, malicious abd an abuse of powers. They represent an effort to suppress lawful activity and the assertion of Indigenous rights and title,” the claim said.
The claims have not been proven in court.