Canadian Anti-Hate Network
Randy Hillier walked out of an Ottawa police station on Monday as the first part of the court proceedings against him closed with his release and a series of bail conditions.
Hillier, the Member of Provincial Parliament for Lanark-Frontenac-Kingston, is facing nine charges for alleged actions taken over the course of the Ottawa convoy protests and occupation in February of this year.
“Ottawa Police received multiple complaints about social media posts and other activities of an individual as part of the ongoing illegal protests,” law enforcement wrote in a press release. “An investigation was commenced and information gathered by a police task force initiated to investigate criminal behaviour during the protest.
“That task force continues its work.”
Hillier is facing charges of Obstruct/Resist Person Aiding Public/Peace Officer, Assault Peace Or Public Officer, and Counsel An Uncommitted Indictable, as well as two counts of Mischief/Obstruct Property Exceeding $5000, Counsel An Uncommitted Indictable Offence, and Obstruct/Resist A Public Officer.
“I look forward to the opportunity to defend myself against these charges,” said Hillier in a release posted to his website.
He added, “Questioning and challenging public policy is the role and responsibility of any elected representative.”
Before his bail hearing on Monday, Hillier turned himself in to Ottawa police to be charged. He would later appear in court via telephone.
While the crown and Hillier did agree before the proceedings on a series of bail conditions, the hearing was called to contest one stipulation that would stop the member from posting, or causing someone else to post, to social media about the occupation, convoy, public health mandates, and anti-vaccine information.
Hillier’s defence argued that such restrictions would impact his role as a critic of government policy, part of his role as an elected official.
“Your posting on social media poses a substantial risk,” Justice of the Peace Louise Logue said during her decision. Adding that the bail conditions would not restrict him from his duties as a sitting MPP.
Ultimately, the condition was upheld. Hillier agreed to all of the conditions verbally before being released.
Among them, was the condition to not have contact or be within 200 metres of a series of individuals connected to organizing the “Freedom Convoy” and a group of live streamers who often refer to themselves as the Plaid Army. Included on this list are Jeremy MacKenzie, a conspiracy theorist and creator of the concept of the fictional nation of “Diagolon;” Tyler Russell, a racist live streamer whose election night broadcast featured appearances from both Hillier and white nationalist Nick Fuentes; and several others who serve as public faces and thought leaders within the network.
Hillier has remained close to the streamers and the broader network of Diagolon since appearing on their streams to promote his own organization No More Lockdowns.
“Non-violent civil disobedience has been a globally accepted means of expressing grievance against governments, until 2022 in Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Canada,” he said in his press release.
“The Prime Minister’s lack of leadership continues to drive Canada down a path of political intimidation and gangsterism, rather than tolerance and mutual respect.”
Hillier’s own recent tenure as a public official has been mired in controversy.
During the occupation of the nation’s capital, where Hillier was a regular fixture on the streets in front of Parliament Hill, he reportedly told his Twitter followers to "Keep calling, in a democracy, expressing yourself is a fundamental freedom,” in response to a request from police to stop tying up emergency phone lines.
In January 2022, Hillier took to his official Twitter account and called Transport Minister Omar Alghabra a “terrorist” and said Alghabra was condemning “Canadians to starvation – in the name of being safe.”
A unanimous motion passed asking the speaker not to recognize Hillier in the Ontario legislature until he apologized for the comments many saw as racist. Hillier denied this on the grounds he had called numerous other members of the federal cabinet, including Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, terrorists as well.
He also was asked to apologize in November for another post in which he used the names and photographs of people who had died. Hillier reportedly attributed their deaths to the COVID-19 vaccination without evidence.
Hillier announced earlier in March that he would not be seeking reelection in this year’s provincial election.
Hiller has held the Lanark-Frontenac-Kingston riding since 2007. One of few elected officials supported by the COVID-conspiracy movement, Hillier has been an outspoken critic of Doug Ford’s government since he was ejected from the Ontario Progressive Conservative caucus in 2019. The removal came after he allegedly commented, “yadda, yadda, yadda,” to the parents of children with autism in attendance. Hillier said at the time the comment was directed at a member of the NDP, but the damage was done and he was suspended and then removed from the province’s Progressive Conservative caucus. He has since maintained his seat as an Independent.
Since then, according to CityNews, Hillier has alleged "possible illegal and unregistered lobbying by close friends and advisors employed by Premier Ford."
Before joining the legislature, according to a 2012 profile in the Ottawa Citizen republished on his website, Hillier was an outspoken land rights advocate for rural farmers, and used disruptive tactics that included blocking roads with tractors, piling hay bales outside of Ministry of Natural Resources offices, and leading a group of farmers on illegal hunts for crop-damaging deer.