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How Byron Sonne’s obsession with the G20 security apparatus cost him everything

The police raided Sonne’s parents’ cottage in Midland (top) and the house he shared with his wife (middle). At the cottage, Sonne kept a potato gun crafted from a PVC tube (bottom) (Images: Colin McConnell/Getstock)

In late 2001, John Peterson sold DSC Group to Massachusetts-based Tyco International for $90.2 million (U.S.). The next fall, Sonne and Peterson were married in an intimate 50-guest cere­mony in her parents’ backyard, followed by dinner at Zucca near Yonge and Eglinton. After a week-long honeymoon on a houseboat in Amsterdam, the couple returned to Toronto and began looking for a home. In early 2003, Peterson’s parents bought them a Tudor house for $880,000. It has a charming yard full of gnarled trees and is 10 minutes away from Peterson’s parents’ home on Glencairn Avenue.

Sonne continued to take contract security jobs. He says that Peterson told him not to worry about finances—she wanted to use her share of her family’s new-found wealth to allow her husband the same freedom that she now had. Peterson volunteered as a docent at the Art Gallery of Ontario and enrolled in the Masters of Visual Studies program at the University of Toronto. She began to create installation art projects that played with lines and dimensions, putting on solo and group exhibitions at Spadina House, Convenience Gallery and campus art spaces. She and Sonne shared an interest in good food, and Peterson leafed through cookbooks, went through a phase of wheat-free eating, and experimented with developing her own recipes, referring to their favourites as “Death Row” meals. Another pastime was travelling, including a trip with Sonne’s parents, Bue and Valerie, to Denmark. Paid computer security work became just one of the many things Sonne spent his time on.

Sonne’s list of hobbies is so long it’s almost absurd, and many of them happen to involve chemicals with potentially explosive properties. By the time he started thinking about building rockets, he was already growing deep blue crystals out of copper sulfate. He and his wife are both avid gardeners and in their garage stored urea, ammonium nitrate and potassium nitrate, which he claims he used as fertilizers. He also had the ingredients to make triacetone triperoxide, an explosive compound commonly used by suicide bombers. The main ingredients of TATP are hydrogen peroxide (which he had for his rocket experiments) and acetone (a solvent he kept in his garage). Separately, they’re relatively harmless, but together they form an unstable concoction known to blow up from the slightest miscalculation. Sonne maintains that he never attempted to mix any explosive substances, and the quantities he owned were legal.

He has a restless energy, and one of his favourite pastimes is mountain biking. He spent many hours and thousands of dollars in the Don Valley, building and maintaining public trails—some of them part of the city plan, others that just seemed to him like a good idea. The G20 wasn’t the first time he had posted photos of tools on the Internet: years before, he was using the discussion forum section of the website mtbr.com to share his opinions on the best rakes, saws and screws for trail building with other mountain bikers, and to mull over the ethics of reshaping the Don Valley without government sanction. He used a camp stove fuelled with hexamine tablets (another ingredient that can be used to make explosives) to boil water for coffee on long rides.

Sonne traces his obsession with technology to a pivotal childhood experience. His dad worked at Northern Telecom for decades, and in the early 1980s, Bue Sonne decided to build a computer. Apple’s early home computers were gaining in popularity, but they were expensive for the average family. Using a homemade motherboard and makeshift components, Bue and a group of technicians and engineers from Nortel put together an unwieldy device that used tapes for memory and made constant beeping sounds. When Bue brought it home, Byron was entranced. He tried his hand at rudimentary programming, and he and his younger brother, Kristopher, insisted they needed the machine to learn their multiplication tables. Then, says Bue, “the boys burnt up the board on me,” so the family bought a Commodore.

In Sonne’s high school yearbook he’s labelled “most likely to become an inter­national terrorist”

In elementary school, Sonne was pronounced gifted and skipped a grade. He was small in stature when he started Grade 9 at J. A. Turner Secondary School in Brampton and an easy target for bullies. In one incident, some older students zipped him into a duffle bag and hung it on a doorknob. He was a member of the audio-visual crew that operated lights and sound equipment for assemblies and plays. He was also a prankster. Once, at age 15, he tossed an artfully constructed combination of modelling clay, wires and a digital watch down the book return chute at the school library. Panicked school officials evacuated the building. Sonne approached the principal himself to explain that it was a joke and was nevertheless suspended. His classmates labelled him “Most Likely to Become an International Terrorist” in the yearbook.

A number of Sonne’s long-time friends showed up at his recent court appearances and bail hearings. “He’s the same guy he was in high school,” says Mark Allingham, a former roommate of Sonne’s brother, Kristopher, who considers them both among his closest friends. “He’s always liked to test people and rules. If you say, ‘You stay in that square,’ he’s the guy who’s going to have one toe out of it just to see if you notice.”

In the years after the 9/11 attacks, Sonne developed an interest in what skeptics call “security theatre,” a term used to describe expensive, large-scale measures that restrict individual freedom but have, in their view, a minimal effect on actual safety. He began to question the usefulness of CCTV cameras. Some research shows that CCTVs in the U.K. have reduced such crimes as parking lot break-ins but have little effect on crimes people really worry about, like violent assaults. Sonne also saw surveillance technology increasingly used for racial or class profiling—“paranoid Caucasians having to keep an eye on coloured folks or hobos in their precious lily-white urban enclaves, waiting for them to do something,” he told me. He was also disturbed by how security measures could be used to gather information about perceived enemies. This, he says, is when surveillance becomes a weapon. He engaged in debates with friends and colleagues about how the public was being observed and what exactly it would take to get “a visit from the men in black.” He decided he should find out. His plan: engage in borderline illegal activities, attract the attention of law enforcement and establish proof of the limits of Canadian freedom.

  • Digimer

    Bryon is a political prisoner, period. Anyone who doubts this need only come watch the hearings and the trial.

  • Anon.

    Arrogance. Maybe Sonne should have considered the consequences of endangering the lives of our political leaders. Innocent people don’t have explosive materials in their homes. Innocent people don’t give people tips on how to clip wires on securty cameras. He got what he deserved. I hope he is prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

  • Anon

    “Engendering the lives of political leaders?” Did you read the article? Google for “security theater”… you will find that the real danger to our leaders is wasting millions of dollars on fake security rather than holding such events in easy to secure locales.

  • anon

    If he was so worried about his beautiful home and beautiful wife, maybe he should have chosen different hobbies?

    He seems very arrogant and naive. What did he think was going to be the consequence of collecting chemicals for explosives and challenging a large security apparatus? Why on earth did he think his wife and her family were going to put up with that behaviour?

  • mophead

    He’s gonna be smokin’ when he gets out of jail.

  • What a Waste

    Here’s my take on this…

    You have an extremely hot wife, who also happens to be extremely wealthy.

    Instead of making love to her and rolling around in money all day, why on Earth would this freak waste his time building rockets and shite?

    Dude… I really hope that your new boyfriend(s) in jail wake up that special lover in you. You should have been in bed with wifey and planning your next worldly vacation, instead of being a mischief.

    Bad on you, dude.

  • KF

    Explosives? Camp Fuel, hydrogen peroxide, and acetone are something most people have in their home. I’m not arguing if he should go free or not but to suggest that those are enough for an explosives charge is ridiculous. Whats next, a water gun and a liter of gas magically become owning a flamethrower?

  • Anon

    Post #3, it’s endangering the lives of political leaders, not engendering the lives of political leaders.

  • Anon

    Completely agree with “What a Waste”. Wealthy and anti-establishment… an age old tale. This guy should focus on bettering the world instead of being a non contributing zero. He should put his skills to good use – maybe set up some cameras at one of his two summer homes so we can watch his wife take a swim.

  • Mike

    the guy did nothing wrong… He was just in a position to prove that the billion dollars spent on security was wasted. And the old saying rings true here that “there is no worse position to be in than being right when your government is wrong.” Remember not one cop has been fired or punished in anyway for what happened at the G20 and the police also have yet to admit to a single mistake even after the ombudsman says it was the worst mass violation of civil liberties in Canadian history. Also remember tyrants will always find excuses to justify their tyranny. When he is found not guilty they will say it is his fault they arrested him and ruined his life… Always happens that way.

  • TrueNorth

    Welcome to Canada – where police assault citizens, even Taser them to death, with virtual impunity, and where a potato gun is considered a WMD.

  • WalterP

    It would appear his major tactical mistake was using a TTC bus as a get away vehicle…

  • as

    he looks like Heath Ledger

  • 10izboy

    Duh! there are consequences to ones’ actions. the maximum sentence in jail would still be too little for what this idiot could potentially have done, or incited others to do.

  • LP

    I cannot believe his Wife bailed on him like that. It’s not like he murdered someone … or by the looks of it, that he was even planning to hurt anyone. After 15 years, she abandons her husband in his time of need…. sounds like a marriage of convience to me.

  • Mike

    He’s just an egotistical asshole (he even said it himself). Loser.

  • Q

    It’s one thing that this guy did some stupid and completely legal thing without thinking about the consequences, but it’s quite another thing for the government and the police to exercise their power and use our tax to try to put a stupid but innocent to jail just to prove a point. The way our police handled this entire G20 reminds me so much of the Chinese government.

  • Alexandra

    The sad thing is this guy has learned nothing at ll from this experience. He intends to continue his “security experiments” after he gets out of prison.

    For all that this guys seems smart, he sure is stupid.

  • anon

    Why is it hard to believe that his wife bailed on him? He got her thrown in prison, that would be a deal breaker for me.

    Also he clearly has no respect for her feelings or else this article wouldn’t have included her wedding pictures and so many details about their relationship! I really doubt that she gave them to the reporter. He’s an asshole.

  • Alison

    I get the Sonne in this story in that he is a part of human “normal” in that he is a big nerd. A real nerd. It’s very sad to me that the majority of kids and bullies still don’t accept nerds. Ok. a house arrest and banning of using a computer or technology until the courts have made a decision – I could see that being appropriate. But this, what they’ve done to Sonne lacks any sort of compassion. Yes, there are consequences; but it sounds like Sonne never got a first warning, let alone a clear “last chance” warning as would anyone in a Canadian workplace. It’s not right to punish based on the horrible potential reality that isn’t real and never happened and was not intended.
    Sorry Sonne for the “lashings” you’ve taken from the adult bullies.

  • Ryan

    Look up the definition of embarrassment in the dictionary and you’ll find a picture of this guy, and his wifes family with a tear down the middle. If he was married to my sister I’d be happy she left him too. What a waste of an obviously intelligent mind, but one that obviously he doesn’t know how to harness into things that would have been positive for his family. This whole story just creeps me out, period.

  • Ryan

    And that is tear as in torn paper. No sympathy tears for that guy.

  • It’sMe

    Everyone on here seems to have extreme sympathy for Sonne’s* ex wife. I find it hard to believe that she had no idea about his passion to push the limits, especially his G20 escapades. His whole life he’s been working towards this point! If I felt strongly against my husbands past times, was aware of the consequences, I would have made an ultimatum a long time ago. Yeah getting arrest must have been the final straw, but i highly doubt things were peachy before and if they were, then she set herself up. None the less, seeing your wedding picture on every newsstand months after the story died in the news, certainly blows.

  • Richard

    Youtube the film “into the fire film” — And you’ll see why this brave political prisoner felt the need to do what he did.

  • What a nutbar

    This guy is insane. Talk about uncontrolled obsession. Can anyone say “paranoid delusion” and “narcissist”? His family and friends are in denial. He must be very charming indeed.

    At least his wife finally saw who he really is and headed for the hills. I guess sometimes it takes getting thrown in jail and having your life ripped apart to wake up and smell the nutbar.

  • Em

    Yes, it does begin to sound like China!

  • Mike Carrick

    “This guy should focus on bettering the world instead of being a non contributing zero.”

    ?By sucking up to the un-elected rulers of the Planet?
    ?By passively allowing millions of dollars to be wasted on this event? By writing letters to the Editor?

    Gee … in America UNIONS built a middle class, a 40 hour work week, and the end of child labor. Are you presuming that this was done without breaking a single law?

    And in the end what was his crime against humanity?

    JAYWALKING.

  • Katie

    Bizarre how so many posters have judged Sonne on his personal life choices. I do not understand why, just because some might think he is a nerd, or an anarchist, or a “loser”, that means it is OK for the Government of Canada and Ontario to beat him up, send him to jail, and threaten to keep him there for 15 years … he did NOTHING … he had NO WEAPONS … and “citing mischief that did not occur” should be right up there with thinking about not paying your taxes …

    It is embarrassing to live in a place where people think it is OK for the government to “destroy” its enemies, even if they are as young, harmless, and ineffectual as Sonne.

  • t

    He wasn’t arrested because he’s a nerd and he’s 37, not a child being bullied by adults.

    He was arrested because he was purposely collecting explosives and building weaponry with an expressed hatred of security forces.

    What ever his reasons for doing so, I for one am glad that our justice system is investigating what he was doing.

  • andy

    I think that he just needed a skilled manager who would control him and direct him towards creation of something good. I would describe him as ”lost genius”.

  • Jamiya

    Two points:

    1. There seems to be a weird family dynamic going on here and one thing is crystal clear: Sonne married up. His mother’s pining for her son’s ‘perfect’ marriage is just plain creepy. If he was my kid I’d have a serious hate-on for the ex that walked out and abandoned him in his time of need, I wouldn’t be watching their wedding video over and over again.

    That said I completely don’t blame the wife for walking out. She’d obviously been willing to put up with a fair amount over the years, but being arrested would be the last straw for me as well. Sometimes you just have to walk away from things that aren’t good for you.

    2. To those calling Sonne a political prisoner who has done nothing wrong, I challenge you to answer this: if the police had let him go and he’d then blown himself up inside or near the security fence, killing world leaders, or if someone who’d read his postings had used that information to disable cameras, breach the security fence and assasinate world leaders, would you still think he had done nothing wrong?

  • Craig Hubley

    A clear case of police intimidation of political opponents and malicious prosecution (these are simply not “explosives”) especially of his wife. He should sue for many millions and get it. Every police officer and prosecutor involved needs to lose their career over this. They are Dr. Charles Smith: stupidity is no excuse.

    What this person did was document something and nothing more, from the facts given. That is not illegal in any democracy – where we have a right to know what is done to “secure” us and where obfuscation of that usually serves to sanction abuses.

  • stella

    This guy sounds like a total moron and he doesn’t deserve that poor woman I hope she dumps him pronto. Anyone who is that attention seeking needs to grow up. Putting your family at risk is a self serving SOB who deserves the jail time he gets and more. If his Mrs. is reading this all I can say is one word “Divorce Lawyer” and no access to her or the kids if they have any. This guy is obviously a psycho in the making if he has this kind of crap in his house endangering others he needs help.

  • Beanie

    Did the writer even bother to verify the facts of this story, or did she just transcribe this lunatic’s prison letters? Did she hunt down any of his “clients” for his security consulting business? Likely she would have found no one dumb enough to pay this guy $250/hr for his services. My guess is this guy was unemployable and invented a consulting company to give the illusion of usefulness. He clearly can’t follow direction and has a big beef with authority. So, an unemployed head case with an “anxiety” problem who stockpiles weapons and explosives and seeks to reveal vulnerabilities in our nation’s security structures is arrested and charged. Well thank God! I’m glad my taxes are being used for something proactive.

  • Buck

    Police interrogations don’t last six hours (let alone 14) when all you have to say is “I can’t answer your questions and I want a lawyer.” Clearly this guy can’t shut up. He sounds too stupid to be a criminal mastermind. Crazy fits.

  • cc

    Seems like the only thing the wife did wrong was marry this loser in the first place.

  • Kristopher Sonne

    It is really clear that this article misses the point from the comments that are written on this page. My brother was in no way a threat to anyone but was pinned as a scape goat by the government.

    Wonder why billions of your tax money was spent on security for the G-8-20 summits? Wonder why not one charge has stuck so far? Byron has yet to have his day in court but most comments here convict him already.

    This whole embarrassment (the way the security was handled, not Byron’s charges) has given me serious doubts about how much I trust police and the government. I was not a conspiracy theorist type person until this occurred to my brother. It all seems to be more from a bad novel than what I expected from the country I thought was just and was my home. The doubt that this has caused shaken the foundations of what I believed about Canada. Currently I live in the US and at least when rights are taken away it is well known (Patriot Act) as opposed to under the guise of the ‘Public Works Acts’ (that hasn’t been used since WWII) or the announced “10 foot rule” that was later rescinded as NONSENSE.

    As for my Kristen, my whole family is saddened by my sister inlaw’s reaction. The Sonne family tends to stick together when the cards are down and this shows what she is made out of. I do hope for the best for her family because they are decent people but it is disappointing.

    My my last comment is if everyone had the same moral standing as my brother, the world would be a better place. Don’t be quick to judge until this whole ordeal has gone through the system. Don’t be surprised if there is a settlement adding more $$$ from what you have already spent one the G20 boondoggle.

    These are solely my opinions on this matter.

    Kristopher B Sonne

  • Shelagh D-B

    What a horrific family she comes from. He is a victim of a classic case of abuse of power. By all rights not only should she have stood by him, but so should have his in-laws. With their 90 odd million it would not have hurt them to have helped with his defense fund, rather than breaking the retirement of his parents.
    My guess is that Daddy’s little princess has control issues, as does quite likely her own father.
    If this man were a criminal, I would understand it but I question the common sense of anyone who might think otherwise.
    I sincerely hope the arts community takes into account her betrayal and shuns her accordingly!

  • Shelagh D-B

    Kristopher B Sonne:

    I wish you and your family the best. All I would suggest is that I would be careful not to go as far as becoming a conspiracy theorist but the abuse and corruption amongst the police has been well documented for years.
    In the end, your brother will end up with a woman much more deserving of him and I suspect less controlling.
    In retrospect her offering your brother a lifestyle free of the problems most face might have been the root of her problems. I am yet to meet a financially secure woman who doesn’t end up resenting her less secure male partner for the very gift she offered him. And although in my own opinion he didn’t do anything remotely criminal and is only guilty of naivete, his type of mind is likely better suited to more structured lifestyle.
    Good Luck and I do hope he is not only freed soon but successfully sues for his unjust incarceration!

  • Ella

    Please show some compassion.
    What did this guy do?
    14 hours of questioning without a lawyer?
    It is wrong. Police are acting as bullies, completely swollen with power.

  • Kent

    You know, those who are calling Byron a terrorist should really have their heads examined for THEY would be terrorists as well if the law decided to do to them what they’ve done to Byron.

    I’ve been very good friends with him since he was 15. He’s no where near into terrorism or blowing people up. Truth be known, he’s actually very much against these things & did what he did to show those who insult him just what a farce things have become. All of what he did was documented in the months leading up to the G20 for anyone to see.

    Had something be planned, do you really think he’s have posted this info? No way. He was trying to inform the public of the false security that we’ve been lulled into. He was trying to show the government how utterly ridiculous some of their ‘security’ measures were. He shows no remorse due to none being needed. He did nothing wrong, certainly nothing illegal.

    He’s a great guy & a great friend. I was at his & Kristen’s wedding. They were a great couple. They were both very happy when I saw them on the days leading up to Byron’s arrest. Her leaving him is their business, although I’m rather lost as to why myself. Once you know the info not allowed due to the publication ban, you’d know he’s innocent, as Kristen would have as well. Denise’s article touches on some, but not all these details. All in time I hope. Byron’s a great person. He’s nothing more than a political prisoner; A token to the ‘effectiveness’ of a 1 billion dollar rip-off.

  • Kent

    “2. To those calling Sonne a political prisoner who has done nothing wrong, I challenge you to answer this: if the police had let him go and he’d then blown himself up inside or near the security fence, killing world leaders, or if someone who’d read his postings had used that information to disable cameras, breach the security fence and assasinate world leaders, would you still think he had done nothing wrong?”

    Ok, here’s the thing. Yes, I can easily understand why he was looked into. The police were right to arrest & detain him over the G20 weekend. That’s just good precautions. However, with the “evidence” gathered, he should have been released (even with parole if they really thought they had a case) after the weekend was over. For what he had ‘explosives’ wise, there is no way, 11 months on, that he should still be in jail. Also, had someone else used the info, that’s THEIR problem. Otherwise, if you tell someone how to do something, it’s your fault if they do it? Nonsense. At that point they are the ones doing something illegal.

    I’ve no doubt that investigation & detainment was the correct thing to do – initially. Even with the secret laws & the idiocy surrounding the jaywalking bit. However, at this point, 11 months in jail without parole, well, it’s just plain wrong.

  • Kent

    “It is really clear that this article misses the point from the comments that are written on this page. My brother was in no way a threat to anyone but was pinned as a scape goat by the government.”

    Indeed Kris. Although I don’t think it’s the article as much as stupid people not reading it, just skimming it.

    Your brothers still a great guy in my books & I look forward to sitting down & chatting with him again soon. As I’ve said throughout this, the best wishes to your family. We’ve all been friends a long time & we all know the truth. Hang in there & all will work out I hope.

  • Laurel L. Russwurm

    @Anon. ⇒ (May 3, 2011 at 11:03 am)

    I think you need a reality check. As both a crime writer and a mother, I am well aware that Innocent people DO have explosive materials in their homes. And I’m willing to bet you have two of the simplest… baking soda and vinegar together.

    Also as a mother, I know that keeping my family safe does not involve pretending danger doesn’t exist. When I deploy a smoke detector in my home, If someone points out that the smoke detector doesn’t work because I haven’t installed a battery, I don’t get angry, I fix the problem by putting in a battery.

    Regardless, the presumption of innocence means that Byron Sonne is legally innocent unless or until he is proved guilty in a court of law.

  • Kent

    Byron just got bail granted! :)

  • Keith

    After reading this article I am 100% convinced that this man is a victim of malicious prosecution by the police and crown. He came to the attention of the police by uploading video’s of the convention centre to Youtube. A perfectly lawful act. That he was pointing out flaws in the security fence should have been seen as a service to the police instead they took offense and set out to destroy his life and the lives of his loved ones (imagine the suffering of the parents!). What we learn from this brilliantly researched and written article is that the “weapon” discovered in police raids – the Potato Cannon was purchased SIX YEARS BEFORE THE G20 and was used at his cottage as a “red-neck sport” Likewise the “bomb-making” chemicals were related to his rocketry hobby which again predated the G20 by years. This is the very definition of trumped up charges and Mr. Sonne is an example of a political prisoner. I hope that when this is over that Mr. Sonne will sue the police and crown for malicious prosecution. In Canada prosecutors have been successfully sued in the past: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miazga_v._Kvello_Estate

  • ts

    I give him maybe a week before he violates the conditions of his bail…

  • Danny

    Your all right !!!!…in a sense. Those for, Those against. but a very valid point he has. Why the millions on security and crap, isn’t TO’s infrastructure failing. SUBWAY this and roads that. They did breach our rights. They did treat us like terrorist’s…..so u treat people the way u want to be treated…golden rule growing up in a “diverse” Canada. How many people were arrested or detained just trying to get a glimpse of the hustle and bustle. Don’t put a candy in front of a child and expect him not to scream bout it. Let the man out see how he evoles….or hold him longer and strip more from him see what his potential actually is. He obviously has access to weapons has bomb making capabilities…..His own fault or not. The government needs to realize that its people are more important than the rest of the world….oh damn that’s right.They don’t care unless it effect’s SUSSEX drive.

  • nk

    All the very best to the Sonne family, particularly Byron himself. Finally bail has been granted – a long time coming. I was reading all of the posts here, and it is amazing to discover just how ignorant a lot of people seem to be. You’re reading Toronto Life magazine, so by default I assumed readers of this magazine were at least somewhat educated, or could at least think and critically analyze, independently without bias and without preconceived bullshit notions society tries to impose on us. I was surprised. Byron has not been given an opportunity to have his case heard in court. How is that people do not understand the significance of that, and yet convict him in their minds without necessary justice taking place? Shame. Also, as for his wife? It says she left him; however, one of the conditions of her bail is that she is not allowed to have any contact with him at all. At all. This was printed in all media sources after she was released!!! Sure, she started legal separation papers, as a symbol of the conditions imposed on her for her own freedom, but really, coming to conclusions on someone’s own private matters is just plain stupid. If you want to a part of a conversation then you have to be informed, otherwise your comments are just nonesensical bs that infuriates us the rest of us who actually read the piece.

  • AnotherCanuck

    This is their mastermind criminal to make an example of? Someone uploading torrents, and building potato guns?

    If they thought he was that talented, they certainly put him in the right place, with bikers, atm scammers, and more. If he’s that much a threat, authorities have made sure everyone gets hands on training.

    He’s basically pulling pranks like Woz & Jobs.

    More waste of taxpayers money.

  • Kristopher Sonne

    Thank-You Kent, I’m sure soon we all will be able to get together. You have been a great support for my family, it is difficult to be far away from my family. I think Wednesday he may be getting out.

    Thanks Denise Balkisoon from the great well balanced article, it does put everything in perspective.

    Laurel L Russworm: I have been following your Blog for some time. Great Work.

    The court case in fall should be interesting.

    Best Regards,

    Kristopher B Sonne

  • Jack Meoff

    Sad that the wife bailed. She wasn’t in love in the first place if she can leave so easy.

    Sonne is a bit of a lugen though. You had a decent life man. Lots of us don’t have the breaks you have had, looks, health, money, career. A good looking lady and good family ?

    I dont have any of those. Perfect example of how an intellectual and educated person can be a victim of self-inflicted arrogance and stupidity.

  • tony

    If one chooses civil disobedience and/or to poke the guard dog in the eye, one has to realize that there might be unanticipated reactions and consequences.

    When one tests boundaries, one should expect that ones intentions and motivations may be challenged, and that one may have to demonstrate that ones’ intentions were not malicious.

    If one isn’t prepared for the heat, one should stay out of the kitchen.

    It was probably a bad idea to have dual purpose materials and substances lying around, if one intended to play games at the G20 security perimeter.

    Sonne didn’t think about the potential blowback from his choices, and how his dual life could be shattered, and impact his family and friends.

    The carelessness of an upper middle class “dissident” leading a dual life.

  • TOdf

    Whenever you have a big, massive, blind ‘security’ apparatus, it becomes incredibly dumb and crude.
    There were countless false arrests at G20.
    TTC guys getting grabbed, beaten and arrested for nothing.

    Countless citizens arrested with zero evidence of anything.
    Others grabbed as they had a black t-shirt on, while buying milk.

    Meanwhile, the real vandals get away with everything, and not one of them was arrested as they broke windows for almost 2 hours.

    So in that context, where totally innocent people were snatched and grabbed, its obvious that someone who was trying to provoke the system would get a massive over-reaction. And once it starts, they don’t back down.

    So let this case go to trial, and see where it ends up, and publish all of the info openly.

    But a full Public Inquiry into the G20 must occur.

  • turner fenton ss

    I like Byron Sonne and his brother Chris especially. In high school at JA Turner Fenton in Brampton; 1991 He had the whole school evacuated, because of a fake plasticine bomb he left on the top shelf of the library. He was an anarchist back then, and I knew it wouldn’t be the last I would heard from him. Let the mounties do their job because they know more than you think.

  • WTF?

    It’s summertime. Both he and his wife are free of having to earn a living due to her rich parents. They’ve been given a $1 million dollar Forest Hill house paid for by her rich parents. They have not one, but two summer homes to enjoy. Yet there he is getting on a bus just to make some sort of point that will make him feel important. What if they had both actually needed to work for a living in order to pay the mortgage or rent? The ex wife still has the lifestyle that her parents can provide, but I guess he will be finding out what working for a living is like shortly – if he’s lucky enough to find employment now. Kind of like blowing all your lottery winnings.

  • born rich

    It’s amusing that this article mentions how his now ex-wife insisted he move out of his parents’ home to prove himself to her, while she was being completely taken care of by her wealthy parents who then bought her a Forest Hill estate.

  • KF3

    10izboy writes:

    “the maximum sentence in jail would still be too little for what this idiot could potentially have done, or incited others to do.”

    Wow, aren’t you the authoritarian boot-licker of the day. We don’t jail people in Canada for things they “might have done”, you weasel. Might you consider relocating to a more iron-fisted nation if that’s the kind of “justice” you’re after? Way to sell a fellow citizen up the river, pal.

  • TOdf

    Actually, during G20 many people were rounded up for what they “might do”.
    Hundreds.
    And they were all 100% innocent, as they were released without charges after being caged like animals.

    That is why the Public Inquiry is being suppressed, as those were illegal detentions. The Charter was shredded.

    And why pick on his wife? People get divorced everyday for leaving the toothpaste cap off, so its no one’s business that she left him.
    Its not relevant to any of the issues.

    What is needed is a Public Inquiry into the G20, to find out how over 1000 innocent citizens were illegally jailed in those G20 cages.
    And why hundreds more innocent people were illegally detained in vans, to the point of urinating on themselves as there were no bathrooms…then released without charge in the boondocks.
    That happened hundreds of times during G20, to totally innocent people, often young women, who were easy arrest targets.
    The most shameful and illegal violation of the Charter in Canadian history.
    And now its being covered-up by those who gave the orders.

    So why do they fear having a Public Inquiry run by a judge, to determine the facts? Why do the authorities fear the facts? That is the real question.
    Let a Public Inquiry figure out what happened, and who gave the orders.

  • Antony Hilliard

    Wow, a lot of authoritarian commenters here. If you’re slagging Byron because he didn’t sit down, shut up, and say ‘yes sir’, that says more about your cowardice and lack of curiosity than anything.

    After the publication ban is lifted, and as the civil suits are underway, I expect we’ll find what many suspect all along: Byron was detained 11 months for threatening police and security agencies with… embarrassment.

  • Sardonic

    Well, you reap what you sow. Apparently a fully-funded life of semi-retirement in his mid-30s wasn’t enough. The man wanted to see what would happen if he pushed it, and he did. Tough shit guy.

  • Petunia

    Just finished reading Cory Doctorow’s young adult book, Little Brother, yesterday and it’s amazing how relevant its themes are to what’s happening to Byron Sonne. I highly recommend reading the book and then coming back and rereading this article.

  • Jon

    Wow, frightening how many people here commenting are just so damn eager to lick the boots of authority.

  • Freedom

    I always find the comments section a great light to illuminate the cowards, the selfish, and the toadies. These are the same people who allowed the countless atrocities of history to occur. Every dictator gets his power from the legions of such as those here that deride the brave and courageous, who fight against the constant threat of evil men.

  • ts

    What are we supposed be fighting for exactly? The freedom to own as many dangerous things as we want because we aren’t planning on using them to hurt anyone really (trust us!), it’s just that they are fun to have… Or the right to play with the police and security forces as childrens toys because that’s fun too??

    Thanks, I’ll pass. There are far better things to fight for.

  • Chris

    There’s a strange point buried in this article that no one else in the comments seems to have picked up on: “[his wife] was forbidden from contacting her husband except through her attorney”. The implication is that this was a bail condition. As far as I can find (as late as a Supreme Court finding in 2007) spousal testimony against the defendant is not even admissible in criminal proceedings (except where the alleged crime is committed against the spouse). How then can the court , legally, bar someone from contact with her spouse? The article doesn’t give any information regarding the current status of charges against her, so the refusal of her parents to reply to letters from his parents may be regarded as not wanting to cause a breach of her bail conditions.
    As far as explosives go, anyone who owns a diesel generator and has a couple of bags of fertilizer around is in the same boat. Acetone and peroxide? Look in your medicine cabinet. If you have nail polish remover and a first-aid kit, watch out! This charge looks as spurious as the weapons charges (potato cannons).
    The interesting charge is the newest one. Inciting mischief not committed. On the face of it, it looks akin to inciting violence or inciting murder. Even if no one takes you up on it, if you call for someone to be killed, it is a crime. In this case, it’ll hinge on how he worded his posts. If, as it seems is indicated here, he merely pointed out weaknesses in the security apparatus (such as “look at this mickey-mouse setup, anyone could cut those wires!”) it’s hard to call that incitement. If, on the other hand, he was recommending that people do cut the wires, that would be harder to countenance.
    The number of people in these comments saying he’s getting what he deserves is appalling. We do have a system in this country whereby people are innocent until proven guilty. Nothing has been proven here.

  • D

    Uhhh, almost any home you go into will have hydrogen peroxide and acetone.

  • Jeremy

    Probably stupid of me to think the reporter will read this but here goes!

    All the obvious points have already been made about the absurdity of the charges and all these pathetic mindless drones trying to rationalize the way Sonne is being nailed to the cross, nuff said. Plus its just predictable.

    What’s much more disturbing is how a lighter version of the same is clearly internalized by Balkissoon. All the charges are completely ridiculous, every citizen of sound mind should be constantly challenging abuse of authority, and to write 5 pages without acknowledging any of this WOULD make her a sorry excuse for a journalist if I didn’t know this is exactly the editorial line she’s forced to toe to keep her job.

    He wrote you 17 pages because he’s in jail with time on his hands you callous airhead

  • read this post again…

    I don’t think Sonne is the result of some Frankinstein lab experiment with an expected behaviour protocol. Great real Aron and What a Waste and anyone who thinks that any of this investigation is right, or justified. Recognize the real issue here is the rights of the individual, including the right to expose the buffoonery that is the glorious war on terror/security of the masterminds behind it. I suppose an innocent person is someone like your self-afraid to fight for the bigger issues and more than willing to give over your rights for a video clip of another man’s wife swimming. I’d like to thank you for pointing out where your priorities lie. You need to understand that there is really no difference between your perspective and that of the people Sonne is fighting with for his rights. If you’re not the one at the top on there side your just another coward to corrupt authority willing to take it backwards just to avoid persecution. This is a war on individual dignity; the right to choose, the right to think, the right to ask, the right to act, the right to expose corruption, the right to be human. I’m incredibly grateful to Sonne for having the ability and the balls to challenge this. A future worth fighting for depends on people like him.

  • Jamie Washington

    You can also make explosives out of fertilizer and sugar.

    Or rust and aluminum.

    Or just a good old propane tank. Hell, if you really want a bang, strap on a portable oxygen cylinder from your local hardware store for an extra $8.

    And by the logic of this case, you should be arrested for having these things, and I should be arrested for telling you about them.

    We don’t put people in prison because we think they’re stupid or crazy or yuppies or assholes or losers. We put people in prison for committing a crime.

  • PA

    From the information provided in the article, there is no case against Sonne. There are no weapons. There is zero evidence of any planning or preperation for an act of violence. Why was he held for so long without any solid evidence agaist him? Why did a potato gun lead to weapon changes that were later dropped. This whole story reeks of the Toronto police acting like keystone cops and a prosiction that is grasping at straws. I hope Byron sues their pants off.

  • PA

    From the information provided in the article, there is no case against Sonne. There are no weapons. There is zero evidence of any planning or preperation for an act of violence. Why was he held for so long without any solid evidence agaist him? Why did a potato gun lead to weapons changes (later dropped)? This whole story reeks of the Toronto police acting like keystone cops and a prosecution that is grasping at straws. I hope Byron sues their pants off.

  • Anon

    Perhaps Office Bubbles is advising the prosecution?

    As an Australian, and a long way away, I wonder what Canada is becoming?

    Hope he makes bail, wins, sues for millions and gets it. It should not be a crime in a free society to be a gadfly.

  • jal

    What I find interesting about the comments is that everyone is assuming that this article accurately represents the facts of the case. All of this is from Sonnes perspective. Why has no one done a deeper investigation from outside of just his letters and his defense lawyers? I think a closer look at things would change some of the ideas people have about this.

  • Aaron

    @ Jamiya

    To those calling Sonne a political prisoner who has done nothing wrong, I challenge you to answer this: if the police had let him go and he’d then blown himself up inside or near the security fence, killing world leaders, or if someone who’d read his postings had used that information to disable cameras, breach the security fence and assasinate world leaders, would you still think he had done nothing wrong?

    You’re absolutely right. Anyone could hypothetically commit a crime while their not in prison. There is obviously only one solution. Lock everyone up! Which prison would you like to be sent to?

    This whole planet is turning into an Orwellian nightmare one attrition of liberty at a time and all the good people of Canada can motivate themselves to do is lambast the scapegoats. Humanity is a bad joke on itself.

  • nothing

    Let’s see. Make “advising and counseling” about child sexuality a crime of child pornography. Now it’s illegal to “counsel” disabling security systems.

    Next: making it illegal to talk about exploits? There will be no computer security industry in Canada if he is convicted. The police, no doubt at the direction of their big friends down south, have trashed this man’s life, but in the end, it’ll be their own ass that gets pounded when security experts are unable to do their work.

    Parliament will have to pass a law permitting the discussion of disabling security systems “for the purpose of the lawful protection of such systems.” And then we can all enjoy a long period of “lawfully defined discussions” while the cops crack down on any grey-areas of speech.

    What’s next in the Great White North?

  • Allan

    I think a lot of people commenting here ended up being confused about the explosives and weapons charges. Acetone is nail polish remover. Hydrogen peroxide is… hydrogen peroxide. Lawn fertilizer is… lawn fertilizer.

    He was charged with building explosives for owning nail polish remover, hydrogen peroxide, and lawn fertilizer. I’m pretty sure most of the people who have derided him over this probably have the same things in their own possession.

    As for the pellet gun, same idea. Many people own pellet guns. Same idea with a potato gun (and if you don’t know someone who’s made a potato gun, you’re probably over the age of 40).

    It’s not to say that he wasn’t attempting to troll the security establishment in Canada. But that is certainly not a crime, and attempting to resolve your own cognitive dissonance about an annoying narcissist being in the right, and The Government being in the wrong, by lashing out against Sonne, is an indirect way of eroding the bank of rights that allows you yourself and your family to live their lives the way they choose.

    It’s best not to cheer when the government starts chipping away at the rights of another even if you don’t like them… as you’re going to come up next eventually.

  • read this post again…

    or we just lock you up and then get on with the real issues, the fight for our rights. The responses are sympathetic because a lot of people don’t see the world the way you do, (I’d say your views are neo conservative) -we are not afraid of the big old bad guy or each other for that matter, we are afraid of th people like you and the people who claim they are “protecting us”, hunting down the “terrorists”, “foiling terror plots”, arresting would be criminals. As we see here its all brainwashing! This is a clear example: the operators of the war on terror will go to any length to create terrorists, the bush admin did it in Gitmo-(90% of the inmates are just Afghan farmers rounded up and handed over to the U.S. soldiers at check points in return for services or goods, they use torture to create confessions, wake up!). Sonne’s arrest legitimizes there actions until he proves them wrong, which he will. You and everyone else who blindly believe in the virtues of “the war on terror”, (have you had a personal experience with these terrorist?) are sad human beings and fluffers of the real terrorists. The motives of the security force behind the G20 is to create terrorist where there are ZERO. They now need people to cover up for their crimes committed against society and they are targeting people like Sonne, who have the balls to show you the hypocrisy, corruption, and fallacy that is the war on terror. I don’t think anybody is trying to hurt world leaders, I’m sorry that is just pure fantasy, like the case against Sonne. Maybe stay off the video games for awhile and reconnect with nature. It will be a good thing for all of us.

  • siliconvalley

    He didn’t do anything illegal, and he just showed curiosity in trying to understand the weak points of the security apparatus.

    This kind of fear-mongering is ridiculous and not Canada’s best moment.

    Based on many of the fear-laced comments (‘…the maximum sentence in jail would still be too little for what this idiot could potentially have done…’), it seems that critical thinking is not being taught in Canadian schools anymore…

  • blendergasket

    Re: “Arrogance. Maybe Sonne should have considered the consequences of endangering the lives of our political leaders. Innocent people don’t have explosive materials in their homes. Innocent people don’t give people tips on how to clip wires on securty cameras. He got what he deserved. I hope he is prosecuted to the full extent of the law.”

    It’s funny how “our political leaders” feel the need to protect themselves with high fences from the people they ostensibly govern.

  • John

    >Innocent people don’t have explosive materials in their homes.

    Yes they do. I am pretty sure you have in your house the same materials he has being arrested for.

    They are common cleaning products, disinfectants and teeth whitening products, it’s just that uneducated people like you don’t know what they are and constantly say irrational things without knowing what they are talking about. Go read a book.

  • annilateur

    a guy here said that : Welcome to Canada – where police assault citizens, even Taser them to death, with virtual impunity, and where a potato gun is considered a WMD

    dude , just go to any other fu”"”ing country on earth, and you will see a police to shoot bullet in people everyday. you are stupid . i hope you will get a disease and have a lots of pain before you die.

  • no

    I realize I’m an American and this happened in Canada, but I really have a hard time feeling sorry for this guy. Anyone as intelligent as this guy seems to be should be well aware that taking photos and nosing around and *especially* criticizing or questioning your government authority is a great way to get arrested, lost in the system, or even disappeared. That, during normal times. Triply so during summits where the world’s elite are coming to hammer out how to help the rich at the expense of the other 98% of society and the hosting country simply can’t afford to look bad to their friends.

    And, as the article indicates, this guy actually knew this going in and expected it. So . . . congratulations, you proved the obvious and are being subjected to it.

    He has clearly decided that proving a point is more important than having his physical freedom, so I’m not really sure how I’m supposed to feel sorry for him or anything. I would love to rally against all sorts of abuses and injustices, but the system is setup so that doing so is a great way to have your life ruined and I have people to care for, a job to worry about, and a home to pay for.

  • Tim

    @10izboy – In Libya, Saudi Arabia and Burma there are consequences to ones actions. That alone does not make any worthwhile statement about the actions of the establishment. In Libya, scores of Gaddafi supporters quite legitimately fear violence and anarchy – and are ready to imprison and kill their fellow citizens to avoid it.
    I am disheartened to see the tone of the majority of the statements here. It is as if we no longer respect dissent. Taking photos and speaking words – publicly and transparently – would never had been an issue 20 years ago. Freedom is being constantly redefined. I am afraid the U.S. seems to have successfully exported their brand of fear-driven autocracy. Perhaps Libyans will lend aid to freedom loving Canadians one day?

  • Rahul

    Sonne sounds like a totally awesome dude. A crazy smart guy who follows his passions no matter how much money he has.

    I quote What a Waste: “Instead of making love to her and rolling around in money all day, why on Earth would this freak waste his time building rockets and shite?”

    You call him a freak!? This is a guy who didn’t let money get to his head, who loves knowledge and learning, a typical renaissance man. Sonne seems like someone who lives life to its fullest, someone we should all try to emulate.

  • Natem

    Well, after reading the whole article, I have to say, the guy had it coming – he literally wanted this to happen. Of course, people need the freedom to do a lot of things without anyone controlling them, but if you look at his actions from a law enforcer’s point of view, he’s a starting terrorist or enemy spy – surveillance, hacking, bomb making, firearms – this guy knows and can do it all and could be very dangerous if he decided to become an enemy. I’m actually surprised it took all of this for the “system” to finally notice him.

    I mean, he can do whatever he wants as long as it doesn’t affect others, and yet one of the first things he did is share information on how to circumvent security measures, build bombs and published some dangerous books/materials known to have influenced many criminals in the past.

    He didn’t think that someone will get angry, read his stuff, and go blow up a building of coworkers while thinking he’s justified. It’s the same as with suicides – the rates are higher in areas with easier access to firearms.

    Besides, I see normal people having chemicals in their house, building rockets, applying for firearms, being interested in security and surveillance, publishing potentially infringing and/or dangerous materials online, applying for a PI license and filming officers at work – BUT doing ALL OF THAT AT ONCE is definitely a big red flag in any sane person’s eyes – if your neighbor did that, you’d most probably report him or at least be worried.

    And now he says he’s finding more in common with other criminals – many of which are actually dangerous, despite saying they aren’t (don’t they all say that?). I see two paths for him – either he becomes a more public person who speaks for a cause, or he goes underground and helps criminals, because, you know, they’re not all bad…

    I actually can’t believe I went from sympathizing with him to not caring at all in a couple of minutes…

  • im_original

    For God’s sake people, the “bomb-making materials” that he had in his house were hydrogen peroxide (a common disinfectant), acetone (nail polish remover), and some fuel for camp cooking. Is that it? You can be labeled a terrorist and dragged through the courts for that? This whole case is completely crazy.

  • Stoopid_American

    The next time I hear a Canadian freak out about the American legal process I’m going to go over some of the details of this story.
    Insufficient evidence for the initial charges.
    Unreasonable denial of bail. Arrestee had no criminal record, strong community ties, and was not a risk to abscond or harm others.
    Media blackout of trial proceedings.
    Time from arrest to trial greater than a year.
    The guy is clearly clean, or would be clean in any truly free state. The government should have hired him, not seal him away.

  • laura

    I wanted to spit after reading this article. Sonne obviously thought that his white skin, impressive address and wife’s bank account made him special. Did he really believe that after his desperate bid for attention worked, that the RCMP would just say pat him on the head, and send him home to his comfortable life? Did he have dreams about being a hero to all those other grown men who spend their time drinking Red Bull and playing at being ‘anarchists’ online?

    Only a child, or someone who lived in his own special world, didn’t know that Stephen Harper was very serious about turning Toronto into an armed camp. Harper was going to stick it to Canada’s most hated city and the hippies that lived there. Harper knew that Mayor David Miller, another pasty, soft boy, would not only stand up for his city, he would hold Toronto down while Harper raped us.

    Has Sonne apologized to the people whose lives he’s hurt? It’s obvious that Kristen Petersen is being painted as the villaness her, the spoiled rich girl who won’t stand by her man, but did Sonne give a single thought to the woman he had vowed to love and honour? Or did he expect that Kristen, her family, and more importantly her family money, would be there to bail him out of his little scrape.

    Like any good parisite, Sonne is now sucking his parents dry. When he gets out of prison, he will probably get a nice settlement from his soon-to-be former wife; hopefully he’ll be able to scrape up enough decency to repay his parents financially; Sonne will never be able to repay the emotional costs.

    Sonne isn’t a political prisoner, he’s not an anarchist; Sonne is a tourist.

  • topsy

    Why is Byron Sonne being painted as some kind of progressive hero? His interest in weapons and violence indicate a more right-wing lean and his reading list includes some of fascism’s greatest hits. The inclusion of the ‘Turner Diaries’ directly contradicts all those people who claim that he was interested in people’s freedom; the ‘Turner Diaries’ is about not only taking away the freedom, but also the lives,of Black people.

    Byron’s very comfortable life was financed by the hard work of others. He had a lot of spare time on his hands but it doesn’t seem like he used any of that time working for social justice or helping others to enjoy just a fraction of the benefits he so obviously took for granted. I’m struck by how passive Sonne’s life was. He puttered around the house he was given, cooked with his wife, got together with other computer geeks regularly and visted cottages and took vactions that he never had to pay for. Other than this and his fake bomb in high school, Sonne doesn’t seem to have done much with all of the advantages he was given.

    I don’t blame his wife for divorcing him one tiny bit. Some of the comments here have been vile, including the one from Byron’s brother who should be ashamed of himself for attacking his sister in law like that. None of the Sonnes seemed to have had any problem with the type of person she was when Kristen and her family were paying for all of the goodies. The woman doesn’t appear to have had any idea what her husband was up to and I can’t imagine what it must have been like to be arrested as a dangerous criminal. And then, to add insult to injury to have her wedding pictures handed over and plastered on newsstands all over the country for any and everybody to look at; she must feel like she’s being slapped in the face every time she leaves her house.

    Like I said before, Byron seems to have taken a lot for granted. His free ride appears to be over and he has no one to blame but himself. Whenever he gets out of prison, hopefully he’ll spend some time trying to give back, since he’s already taken so much.

  • Ibrahim

    Not Canadian but if that is what they do to you for looking closely at what *your* government is up to then I do not envy Canadians.

    I will never take any Canadian leader seriously when they get to lecture us “third worlders” on Democracy and justice.

  • Joanne

    I think what he did was brave – he was challenging the system. He may have gone a lil overboard on the weapons thing – taking another route might have been a better idea. But what he’s been doing all these years is more than what any of these dumb-founded bloggers have been doing. I respect what he’s been trying to prove and I honestly believe he had no intentions on hurting anyone.

  • Jack Augh

    The sad part about Sonne is not that he lost his wife and home (you can always replace those), but that he used his intelligence and skills for no other purpose than to test the boundaries to see what he could get away with. He could have used them for greatness, like building a company or helping law authorities catch terrorists. What a waste of talent!

  • protagonista

    I avoided the G20 circus of the absurd in Toronto, but watched in fascination from a safe distance. It was very frightening to watch the army of “Darth Vader” clad police forces readying themselves for a complete annihilation of the slightest perceived security infringement to protect the global elite at the cost of billions of tax dollars. How did it feel as a spectator/suspect, to be rounded up by these well paid specialists and to languish in a holding cell for doing nothing out of the ordinary? This does not include those agents of change who evaded the security squads as if by divine providence. Does this sound like we live in a democracy… really?? When people can’t question the decisions of government in a democracy, we have a problem. The class action lawsuit, although a sweet revenge is a double edged sword, and once again we the people will have to pay up with our taxes. Just keep sticking it to us! I suspect that Byron Sonne is someone who is seeing the trend of world to come and this is the most disturbing vision of all.

  • T Joe

    Some of the comments enrage me. Apparently most people are only concerned with how hot his wife is and how he should just be having sex with her all the time. Some people have more active and complex minds than that.

    As for “he got what he deserved.” Are you kidding me? HE DIDN’T DO ANYTHING WRONG!!!! This is absurd.

  • Thomas

    Well, having just been directed to here by the CBC Metro Morning podcast. I have to say I was far more interested in reading the comments than the article. People are disgusting, wives aren’t for the sexual gratification some religious fanatics seem to believe they are. This is just terrible, you all seem so convinced that it’s wrong to stop and ask “Why did this happen?” Well, it happened to him because his wife was likely egocentric about her importance to him. It happened because he pursued his profession into a personal interest, finding flaws in Security. Do you not remember that the downtown core became criminal territory over the G20. They could have held the G20 anywhere, do political leaders really all take pride in seeing the ‘lively core’ of toronto swarmed with police and footage of police firing on their own citizens with rubber bullets? Is that what political leaders want to see? The citizens of a nation under fire in their own homeland. For what? Disagreeing with expenses, with security measures, with fake laws and unnumbered officers yelling at people blowing bubbles?….. If that’s what our nation wants to display to the world than Byron Sonne did the one thing we should all be doing. He asked a questions and we see now, when you ask too many, you will be detained with a slew of charges and little explanation. Welcome to Canada, please obey and lower to your knees when your politicians ask you to spit shine their proverbial loins and stroke their long, hard ego.

  • melth

    Judging by the commentary, we seem to have become a nation of full-on fascists. The police broke the law and violated human and civil rights, attacking unresisting, ordinary people and journalists and beating and incarcerating them with no cause. Meanwhile, beefy guys in new black clothes trashed selected store fronts while police were directed away from the area. The policing of the G20 was state-sponsored terrorism. It was intimidation, the criminalization of political engagement or even daring to be on the street while a international conference is taking place.

  • Florian

    People, what are you paying your taxes for? This guy did nothing illegal and is thrown into jail. That he was not acting “normal” may be, but he never was a danger to anyone. Also, the respect for “world leaders” here is disgusting. If these people weren’t so arrogant, they would hold their meetings in locations that are easier to secure than Metropolis. That “world leaders” in a democracy fear their people like that is very showing.

    Dissent is criminalized. I’ll spare the nationalistic china comparison. People, please look at yourselves first.

  • Louis

    This really points out that there are no effective checks on the police and court system when they deal with a perceived affront to their power and legitimacy. Anybody who challenges the natural order of things — as they narrowly see it — is a target for revenge. Byron’s big mistake was underestimating the forcefulness of the vengeance.
    As for the haters out there commenting on this article, just be aware that if people like you could decide who was worthy and virtuous, and who wasn’t, you probably wouldn’t make the cut.

  • Patrick Bay

    Yup, straight-up terrorist, this guy. Nail polish remover (acetone) and hydrogen peroxide (hair bleach, wound cleaner) are both clearly only usable to make bombs so why would any INNOCENT individual have them in their home? It’s not like you can walk down to your local Shopper’s Drug Mart and buy up a bunch!
    And his wife’s paintings? Also obviously bomb-making material. Same for anything at Byron’s dad’s cottage; old guy was probably hiding Al Qaueda under his kitchen sink! Besides, cops don’t need a warrant to bust down doors. That’s their right, just like it’s your right to just the hell up and not ask any questions about how your tax money is being spent.
    I’m personally glad this scumbag is off the streets — I know I feel WAY safer. Good job, government!

  • Mandy G

    He is clearly suffering from grandiosity and is delusional. Yes I am a psychiatrist and no I have not treated him. It is quite apparent that he is a victim of his illnesses and the ego and pomposity of his lawyer combined with the system.
    He needs help and it appears his lawyer placed his own needs above his clients. I congratulate his wife for leaving someone who refuses help.
    I also have been told by those close to the case that it was his decision to remain in jail by his choices which were made AFTER his arrest. Was his lovely wife supposed to sit by him after he made statements knowing it would lead to her arrest and hoping her family would then finance the defence ? He seemed to put the well being of himself, Joseph Di Luca, Peter Copeland and Kevin Tilley far ahead of hers. She supported him financially and otherwise for a decade and a half. Let him rot ! I wonder if his lawyers will take him in..or have they already?

  • Roger Mainstay

    Folks, don’t feed the trolls. It’s clear the previous comment poster is not a psychiatrist; if they were, then I feel sorry that such a hateful person has control over other’s mental health states.

    Sonne is a hero.

  • MasonicHandshake

    He didn’t consider how his activities might be interpreted. Lucky for him they didn’t do anything really dirty such as invoke the mental health act. The consequences would have been much worse than having a criminal record. He still has a chance.

  • CarlosSanchez

    Teasing the cops? What for? It’s simply idiotic.

  • jimmy

    hes a bro

  • PureDanish

    What a knucklehead.

  • Shubham

    - Congratulations a million times over. I just love the partogohph of Byron and the bubbles always have, and always will. And I just love the photo you’ve posted of him as he is now. You should be so proud of yourself how fantastic!! Well done xx

  • Janet Merner

    In Canada it is legal to fondle the breasts of a transsexual without her permisioon, as she is not a real woman, as found in a 507.1 hearing in Kitchener, Ontario in 2009. In Canada the police will not stop people from putting burned out cars in front of a Transsexuals business or cutting her fuel lines. But all you have to do is make Stephen Harper look foolish and he will sic his goon squads on you. Me! I am hoping to find a safe country in Europe and get them to accept my asylum or something where I can stay there. Canada no longer believes in tolarance, justice, or fair treatment.

  • aha

    Take that you arrogant communist bastard…. Us morally correct conservatives loath people like him and how much they cost us tax payers needless dollars!! Let him rot in jail for eternity

  • Gene wilder

    Hey
    He was offered a deal that was far better than the ended
    Result

    No explosives and keep peace for freedom
    Sitting in jail and house arrest bail to say I won instead of
    Charges withdrawn is a hell of a victory.
    Either he had the worst lawyer or he’s insane or both.

  • Peter Voth

    I find the first few pages of comments, attacking Byron Sonne, to be quite fishy. It almost seems like they were written by the same person.

  • Bill crouter

    Byron had terrible legal advice who drew out a case to the total detriment of his client. Both liked to see their faces in the paper. One of Sonnes lawyers was so outraged by the handling of the defense that he quit never to speak to Diluca again. Byron and Diluca have one major difference and that is Diluca is supposed to have ethics and be professional for Byron there is no professional obligation to do anything . For Diluca it obviously at least in his overblown mind believes he too may act with impunity and a complete lack of duty towards his client.
    Mr. Diluca shame on you !

  • Evelyn Posen

    The guy was offered release …but then he and his lawyers would lose all the wonderful publicity. All the crown wanted was a psych assessment and no bombs . If his wife didn’t leave the parasite she’d have to be mentally ill. He needed help but refused it. This should be known as the parasite case . Somes chose a fine lawyer a fellow parasite …..not many lawyers would let there clients rot in jail for a year to get their picture in the paper and not to many people are twisted enough to sit in jail for the same purpose. He just could not fit in with the moneyed class he so desperately wanted to be part of. Another thing he has in common with his lawyer. Class is not for sale for the likes of Somme and di Luca ( who has changed his name from Diluca ? Why …google and find out….no I’m not the one all the complaints are about I’m di Luca no Diluca ….

 

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