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What happens if protesting politicians are convicted of crimes?

Last Updated Apr 17, 2018 at 9:46 am PDT

NDP MP Kennedy Stewart and Green Party Leader Elizabeth May attend a rally in Burnaby against the Kinder Morgan Pipeline expansion project on March 23, 2018. (Lasia Kretzel, NEWS 1130 Photo)

'We're unlikely to see them resign or be forced out,' says NEWS 1130's legal analyst in discussing May and Stewart

If convicted of crimes, it's possible for Elizabeth May and Kennedy Stewart to be barred form visiting another country

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – Special prosecutors have been appointed to determine if criminal charges should be laid against Green Party leader Elizabeth May and local NDP MP Kennedy Stewart, both of whom were arrested last month at the Kinder Morgan site at Burnaby Mountain.

“Certainly, they could be facing the same type of issues and consequences that anybody who’s not a politician could be facing when it comes to the impact of a criminal record,” says NEWS 1130 legal analyst Michael Shapray.

As for whether Stewart and May would have to resign — if convicted — Shapray says that depends on whether criminal charges are actually approved against them. “We’re unlikely to see them resign or be forced out. But that could change, based on what the evidence is and pressures they feel in the political arena, as a result of that.”

Shapray says it’s possible they could be barred from visiting another country.

“It would be for that country to decide whether or not to allow them or anybody else in — based on their own immigration policies and any restrictions they have for people with criminal records and of course, the type of offence that someone’s convicted of can sometimes play a factor into that as well.”


Shapray notesĀ it’s too early to speculate on whether Stewart and May could end up spending time in jail because no charges have been approved yet.

May and Stewart are among several protesters who are accused of violating a court order aimed at ensuring construction continues. They were arrested late last month.