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Joel Bitar released on bail

U.S. citizen, one of several Americans facing G20 protest charges, out on $100,000 bond

by Justin Saunders

a photo of Joel which appears on his support website
a photo of Joel which appears on his support website

Joel Bitar was granted bail today by a judge at a provincial courthouse in north Toronto. The New York city resident, one of several Americans facing charges related to the June 2010 G20 protests in Toronto, had been arrested upon his arrival in Canada at Pearson airport yesterday, following a lengthy extradition process that began over two years ago.

In February of this year, Bitar was briefly taken into custody by American authorities, given a $500,000 bond, placed under house arrest and made to wear an electronic monitoring bracelet. He faces dozens of counts related to property damage that occurred during the protests. Bitar and four other Americans found themselves targets in a relentless investigation launched by the Toronto Police in the wake of the protests, at a time in which the department's own conduct during the Summit was being widely condemned.

The full details of today's bail agreement are unclear; however, sources told the Media Coop that Bitar faces certain prohibitions on his activities in Canada (including 'political' activities), and was given non-association conditions with a small list of individuals.

Bitar was transported by authorities back to Pearson airport this afternoon to be released from custody.


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