Two prominent Canadian neo-Nazis are under police investigation for their actions following the white nationalist terror attack in New Zealand late last week.
One man is under investigation for allegedly posting and endorsing the manifesto of the Christchurch gunman who’s been charged with murder for the shootings that killed 50 Muslims and injured 50 more late last week. The other man is under investigation for allegedly attempting to inspire similar violent actions against Canadians. Both have been involved with the Canadian neo-Nazi movement for decades. No charges have been laid in either incident.
On Monday, Hamilton, Ontario police announced a “full investigation” into longtime Canadian white-nationalist figure Paul Fromm for allegedly uploading the Christchurch manifesto to the website of his white nationalist group, the Canadian Association for Free Expression. The manifesto, entitled “The Great Replacement” was originally posted online by Brenton Tarrant shortly before the March 15 mosque attacks—17,000 words that mix far-right tropes, trolling, and white nationalist ideology.
For decades, Fromm has been one of Canada’s highest profile white supremacists, working as the international director of the white supremacist Council of Conservative Citizens, the leader of the Canadian Association for Free Expression, and working as a co-host on Stormfront Radio. Most recently, Fromm was in the news when he ran for mayor in Hamilton.
In a lengthy write-up that accompanied the manifesto, Fromm claimed he doesn’t endorse the violence, but wrote when “debate and dissent are silenced by ‘hate laws’ you make violence almost inevitable.” Fromm added, “[Tarrant’s] analysis of the crisis we face is cogent.” Speaking to Global News, the Hamilton police service said they’re looking into the posting and “are currently investigating in order to determine if a criminal offence has occurred.”
Richard Warman, a human rights lawyer and a board member of Canadian Anti-Hate Network, told VICE that he would like to see Fromm charged.
"I think it is abhorrent and disgraceful for him to engage in that kind of conduct, sadly it doesn't surprise me given his decades-long history involvement with the neo-Nazi movement here in Canada,” said Warman. “In this case I think he has gone well over the bright red line in terms of posting the terror manifesto."
Meanwhile, a post appeared on the Facebook page of long-time neo-Nazi Kevin Goudreau, which called for attacks against a litany of targets. Goudreau, who resides in Peterborough, Ontario, has denied writing the posts, though they were posted by an account with his name. Among the targets listed in the post are Antifa, the Canadian Anti Hate Network (of which Warman is a board member), Anti-Racism Canada, and “any government organization like the Human Rights Commission.” The post also mentioned CBC, VICE, and the National Post.
Goudreau, who has a shotgun and swastika tattooed on his chest, told local news site My Kawartha that he does not endorse violence and that the post was probably written by “just people messing with [him.]”
Goudreau has been a longtime player in the Canadian neo-Nazi scene. He heads up the Canadian Nationalist Front—of which he seems to be one of the only members—and is one of Canada’s most prolific posters on Stormfront (an infamous and longstanding neo-Nazi forum). Warman described him as a"lone-wolf” whose “involvement of the movement dates back to the 80s and 90s where he was involved in the Heritage Front. So he's had an extended period of time involved in the neo-Nazi movement.”
"He repeatedly advocates violence against individuals and groups based on his racist ideology,” said Warman. “I think it's high time that the police start taking his threats seriously and say we have laws against uttering threats and, not only that, you can't counsel people to commit murder."
"I think the fact there has been no consequences emboldens him to continue making these threats of violence up to this point where he is now counselling murder.”
In a press release, Peterborough Police said they are “aware of the information being posted and circulated on social media regarding potential threats or hate crimes.” Warman said he made a formal complaint to police.
In his complaint, which was provided to VICE, Warman wrote that “Kevin Goudreau… for years uttered threats of hate-motivated violence online against his perceived enemies. For reasons that I am unable to comprehend as a lawyer, he has gotten away with it up to now.“
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