Twenty-five people face a total of 61 charges over violence in Vancouver after the Stanley Cup ice hockey final.
Cars were set on fire and buildings were looted in the city on 15 June after the Vancouver Canucks lost to the Boston Bruins in the final game of the NHL championship contest.
The charges include rioting, arson and breaking and entering.
In October, Vancouver’s police department recommended 163 charges against 60 individuals.
“We are very encouraged by the approval of these 61 charges and we will continue to work closely with the special prosecution team as even more charges are expected in the coming days and weeks,” Vancouver Police Department’s Inspector Les Yeo wrote in a statement.
In mid-November, officials released 35,000 copies of a poster bearing the photos of suspects they had not yet been able to identify. Police say they received close to 100 tips on 48 suspects within days.
The sheer number of charges, with more expected, have left some worried about their effect on the already crowded British Columbia courts.
Canada’s Globe and Mail newspaper reports that dozens of court cases have been abandoned in the province this year because of delays.
A.B. Nothing worse than getting arrested 6 months after committing a crime:
You wake up on June 16th and realize you lit a cop car on fire.
For the first couple of days you probably hide in your aunt’s basement. The authorities don’t come so you leave the basement but lay low for a few weeks. You don’t take any calls and you remove your facebook profile.
2 months later you go out with your friends but you make sure to wear a dark sweatshirt and not get too drunk.
Another 2 months later you are back to your normal routine, facebook is back up & you are about to start college. Life is good. The girl down the hall even has a little crush on you.
While at home for Christmas break you hear a knock on your door. It’s the police with a giant poster of you with a molotov cocktail in hand.
I think I would rather have bamboo shoved under my fingernails. Nothing worse than a prolonged “I almost got away with it.”