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(CBN NEWS) — A Canadian pastor, who was arrested twice in 2021 for defying the Canadian government’s harsh public health restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic, was acquitted of all charges Tuesday.

The Provincial Court of Alberta exonerated Pastor Tim Stephens of the Fairview Baptist Church in Calgary of all public health-related charges regarding social distancing, according to the nonprofit law firm Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms (JCCF) whose attorneys represented Stephens.

“We are pleased that the Court has acquitted Pastor Stephens on the charges of not complying with a public health order,” the JCCF said in a press release. “Pastor Stephens was illegally arrested and imprisoned for having allegedly violated the Public Health Orders, which have since been shown to be ineffective and harmful. This decision sets the record straight about the justifiability of his actions and about the importance of respecting Charter rights and freedoms.”

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