Freemen on the Land are “parasites” peddling “pseudolegal nonsense”: Canadian judge fights back

Meads v. Meads, 2012 ABQB 571 (Canadian) – read judgment / PDF

Almost a year ago, I and some other legal bloggers wrote about a phenomenon known as the Freemen on the Land movement. I called the post Freemen of the dangerous nonsense, for that is exactly what the movement is, for those desperate enough to sign up to it. Now a Canadian judge has done many judges around the world a huge favour by exploding the movement’s ideas and leaders (or “gurus”) in a carefully referenced and forensic 192-page judgment, which should be read by anyone who has ever taken a passing interest in this issue, and certainly by any judge faced by a litigant attempting the arguments in court. 

The Freemen, alongside other groups with similar creeds, believe that if you change your name and deny the jurisdiction of the courts, you will be able to escape debt collectors, council tax and even criminal charges. As this member of the Occupy London movement, “commonly known as dom” wrote in guardian.co.uk (of all places) “if you don’t consent to be that “person”, you step outside the system“.

As you may have guessed, this magical technique never works in the courts, but judges are often flummoxed when faced with the arguments, which are odd and in many ways risible. But what has been lacking is an authoritative, systematic judgment explaining, in detail, why that is. Until now, that is.

Associate Chief Justice J.D. Rooke in the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta, Canada has published a ruling which deals exhaustively with the movements’ (there are a number of similar ones of varying craziness and scariness) history and arguments. He groups the various movements including the Freemen under the title “Organized Pseudolegal Commercial Argument litigants” (OPCA).

Clearly, this is Judge who has had enough. After “[o]ver a decade of reported cases” which “have proven that the individual concepts advanced by OPCA litigants are invalid”,

What remains is to categorize these schemes and concepts, identify global defects to simplify future response to variations of identified and invalid OPCA themes, and develop court procedures and sanctions for persons who adopt and advance these vexatious litigation strategies.

His aim? To “uncover, expose, collate, and publish the tactics employed by the OPCA community, as a part of a process to eradicate the growing abuse that these litigants direct towards the justice and legal system we otherwise enjoy in Alberta and across Canada“. Good for him. Somebody needed to do it.

The facts of this particular case are neither particularly interesting nor relevant to much of what the Judge says about the movements. Rather, he has used this relatively simple case where a litigant advanced Freemen-type arguments (“he was not Dennis Meads, the “corporate identity”, but was present as Dennis Larry Meads, “a flesh and blood man””) as a hook to hang a much wider exposition of the movement and its ideas.

What the judgment says

This is a long judgment, on the scale of a reasonably sized book. I will try my best to point out a few interesting bits but I would recommend that you read it. It is well set out and easy to follow. My numbered references are to paragraphs.

Justice Rooke begins with a fascinating summary of the (surprisingly recent, only beginning in the last 20 years or so) history of movements such as the Freemen [172], Detaxers [169], Sovereign Men/Citizens [176], the Church of the Ecumenical Redemption International [183], and Moorish Law [189].

One thing which is crucial to understand is that despite its anarchical tone, the movement has leaders or “gurus” who peddle its ideas to people. This is (you might have guessed) usually for a fee. The gurus focus on people who are at crunch points in their lives, such as those facing bankruptcy, foreclosure on their home or difficult litigation involving access to their children. So,

an OPCA litigant in court is likely operating under instructions obtained from a commercial source, and has been told to conduct and frame his or her court activities in an unnatural, incorrect, and distorted context. The litigant is instructed to follow a script that is, in all probability illogical, and certainly contrary to law.

Another interesting if unsettling aspect of the movements is the links to violence – see [175] (“Alarmingly, certain members of the Freeman-on-the-Land movement believe they have an unrestricted right to possess and use firearms.”) The danger is such that the FBI classifies the Sovereign Men, the chief US proponents of the ideas, as a domestic terrorist movement [181].

How to spot them and what to do with them

Justice Rooke goes on to explain how to spot OPCA litigants [from 203] by the odd way their documents are presented, their distinctive language [220], the obsolete, foreign, or typically otherwise irrelevant legislation they cite [228] such as our very own Magna Carta, Black’s Law Dictionary and their own birth certificate [230] and the claim that they are immune to the court’s jurisdiction (‘magic hats’) [302], of which there are many shapes and sizes. There are many other identifying features which have been discussed on this blog as well as others.

Then the Judge goes on to explain why the arguments don’t work. I will not summarise the arguments. They are well laid out and referenced, reaching back to basic contract law to, for example, explain why the bizarre unilateral “agreements”  produced by the movements are illusory. Although Canada-focussed, this section could form the basis of any judicial response to the Freemen arguments on these shores.

The oppressive, malignant entity

The Judge also considers appropriate court strategies for dealing with OPCA arguments so as to minimise the wasting of the court’s and, as importantly, other litigants’ time in facing down the arguments. This should be of interest to the UK courts, which could also follow this guidance:

I believe that a key element of an appropriate and successful response to OPCA litigation is that these proceedings be segregated, where possible, to minimize their effect on the innocent other parties involved. The suggested novel and conventional OPCA-specific court procedures (judicial review of suspect documents, show cause hearings, court security procedures, contempt, security for costs, elevated costs and damages, declaration of vexatious litigant status) may be a starting point for that objective.

A second aspect is that innocent parties be indemnified for the legal costs associated with OPCA litigation. No, or little, cost should flow to a litigant who is abused by OPCA strategies.

However, dealing with the cases systematically and efficiently will not be easy given the nature of the movement and the attitude of its adherents:

That challenge is not assisted by guru indoctrination that court and state actors are parts of an oppressive, malignant entity, or at a minimum willing supporting characters of a dark, concealed design. Given that, to say that the typical OPCA litigant appears to be ‘tightly wound’ is an understatement.

Importantly, the Judge also discusses the duties of lawyers [642] in such cases.

Eighth circle of hell

The Judge reserves his real ire not for the OPCA litigants or ideas, but its “gurus” who sell those ideas [669], for whom he quotes Dante’s Inferno:

evil counsellors – those who used their position to advise others to engage in fraud, and “the falsifiers” – alchemists, counterfeiters, perjurers, and imposters, into the inner canyons of the eighth circle of hell.

He goes on, and this really is the crux (recall my use of the snake oil picture to illustrate my first post):

Persons who purposefully promote and teach proven ineffective techniques that purport to defeat valid state and court authority, and circumvent social obligations, appear to fall into those two categories. That they do so, and for profit at the expense of naive and vulnerable customers, is worse.

For litigants, he provides this very useful set of questions to ask of those selling the ideas to them, which I will copy in full:

  1. Why do these gurus seem to have little, if any, wealth, when they say they hold the proverbial keys to untold riches?
  2. Why do those gurus not go to court themselves, if they are so certain of their knowledge? If they say they have been to court, ask them for the proceeding file number, and see if their account is accurate. Those are public records.
  3. Can that guru identify even one reported court decision where their techniques proved successful? If not, why then are all successes a tale of an unnamed person, who knew someone who saw that kind of event occur?
  4. How are their ideas different and distinct from those surveyed and rejected in these Reasons?
  5. How are these advisors different from the OPCA gurus who have been unsuccessful and found themselves in jail? What did Porisky, Warman, and Lindsay do wrong?
  6. Will your advisors promise to indemnify you, when you apply the techniques they claim are foolproof? If not, why?
  7. If they cannot explain these points, then why should you pay them for their legal nonsense?

Your spells fail

Judges do not have an easy job. Like sports referees, they are criticised when they get it wrong but rarely praised when they get it right. They are respected but not loved, and garner little support from other public figures for the valuable work that they do.

But, as any lawyer knows, judges have to play the hand which they are dealt, whether in relation to a particular case or a social phenomenon such as the Freemen and their sister-movements. Sometimes, this means that they are on the front line of a battle between citizens and the state, and it is hard enough to deal with the sensible arguments. In a way, the barmy ones are much harder if the system is to remain fair but also efficient.

So, I think we should raise our (non-magic) hats to Associate Chief Justice Rooke who has taken the time and effort to attack the OPCA movement head-on, and provide other judges, worldwide, an extremely useful, practical and sensible approach for dealing with this dangerous phenomenon. And as interesting and sometimes amusing as it may be, dangerous is what it is. For people are signing up to these arguments, often paying to do so, in proceedings which could ruin their lives. And, as this Judge put it:

You cannot identify one instance where a court has rolled over and behaved as told. Not one. Your spells, when cast, fail.

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74 thoughts on “Freemen on the Land are “parasites” peddling “pseudolegal nonsense”: Canadian judge fights back

  1. Who is going to tell “Old Holborn”? Alas I can see the point made by the “Free Men”. The Judge has the power to sentence you (backed up by dozens of armed police) he does not have the right. To put it in a UK context look at how PIRA did not recognise jurisdiction in Northern Ireland.

    • @goggzilla

      I doubt Old Holborn would ever deploy Freeman strategies in his own case; he merely pays lip service to Freeman ideas so as to impress and to maintain a hold on his juvenile and deluded teenage following. Old Holborn is a mature adult and has too much worldly wisdom to believe he would get away with the strategies he tacitly incites others to use. In this regard he is a menace.

  2. Very welcome indeed, and although I’m sure that freemen true believers will dismiss is with the usual handwaving about how the judge did not have authority, it is useful to educate third parties with.

    Also interesting to me is that the section on “foisted agreements” has some relevance to quasi-legitimate commercial practices as well, such as software “licence agreements”, private parking companies, and some rogue employers. Some examples of their practices are not a whole lot different, except that in a few cases the courts seem to have approved of it.

  3. Adam – thought it might be worth posting a sample you tube video to show what the police and indeed magistrates …. (Gloucester Court Case in 2010: ‘Rebel’ Raymond St. Clair)..are facing with these ‘freemen’ entitites in the UK…..

    .. this ‘guru ‘ doesnt appear to be asking for money of any sort, and does go to court for other people (judges checklist)….a ‘pro bono’ guru???

  4. Here’s an attempt to arrest a judge under Article 61 of Magna Carta because ..um…. access to justice is based on financial gain….which only covered personal injury under Clause 36, but no matter, no matter….http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J_QAoDNf0_s&feature=related
    …..don’t know which version of Magna Carta they’re looking at, mind you.

    Send no money……I narrowly avoided being forced to build a fish wier once by pleading Clause 23 …the clause only covered the construction of bridges, but nobody knew, and there was only a G4S ‘f###ing pleb’ copper on duty in the courtroom, so I walked!!!
    Even David Cameron didn’t know what Magna Carta stood for on ‘Letterman’ …why on earth should the judiciary or the police???….

  5. Certain obligations and expectations have been laid out in acts of law and some people are rightly incensed and refusing to cooperate in such areas as council tax where the law is extremely shaky in its application.

    The Perjuries Act 1911 explains without equivocation what a court order is and what our obligations to a court order are.

    Now here is the crux point, the council puts your name in a computer sheet and without any notification attends a hired room in a magistrates court to have liability orders rubber stamped then send you a letter stating you have a liability order against you and you have to pay.

    A letter telling a person of an existence of an order is not correct and from what I can gather there is no case of these orders being supplied on demand for inspection, PA1911 states clearly that an order is a wet ink or court arms embossed sealed order, it is not a letter from your local council stating an order has been made.

    We have an inherent right to know the case against us and defend our case but when councils do not notify you of any hearing, do you respond to it in that instance either?

    What if you don’t owe the money? Councils are renowned for not listening to your claims in this regard and they are not following the law yet forcing people to comply with a system that is being abused.

    • I forgot to add to, is when did Canadian law become English law? The application of the Magna Carta certainly are arguable in the former colonies but the application is different here in the UK where we enjoyed the expected rights and tenets of the Magna Carta in its many revisions for centuries.

      The difference between America and Canada of course is Canada does accept our monarch as head of state and the question arises then if the Magna Carta, a contract drawn between state and crown could be applied there, unless there is some historical statement from the crown or state when Canada was a colony that it was applicable to that area, that its held to be under the Magna Carta then it does look like the Canadian Judge is correct and didn’t need to write 190 pages to say so.

      • There is a recent Judgment which confirms that Magna Carta applies in the colonies: “124. It has been part of the law of England at least since Magna Carta, chapter 29 of which provides that no freeman shall be exiled otherwise than by the lawful judgment of his peers or by the law of the land. Historically this was no doubt aimed at preventing the King from arbitrarily banishing his more important subjects, in particular the barons, but it has come to be accepted as a right possessed by every citizen, which Blackstone said could only be removed by the authority of Parliament (Commentaries, 15th ed, 1809, p 137, the same wording also appearing in the 11th edition, published in 1791 and containing Blackstone’s ipsissima verba)…”.

        http://www.bailii.org/cgi-bin/markup.cgi?doc=/uk/cases/UKHL/2008/61.html&query=bancoult&method=boolean

    • I’m not sure which part of the Perjury Act you are referring to, but the terms “order” [in this context], “wet ink”, and “court arms” do not appear in its original or amended versions.

      If you want to dispute liability for council tax you are entitled to know of, and attend, the hearing. However the court is entitled to reject your dispute if the basis for it is incorrect. If you were not notified of the hearing, the liability order can be set aside under s.14 of the Magistrates Courts Act.

    • The reason why officials should know Magna Carta is Ch. 45 of Magna Carta “(45) We will appoint as justices, constables, sheriffs, or other officials, only men that know the law of the realm and are minded to keep it well…”. Not knowing is misconduct in office and grounds for instant dismissal.

  6. Here’s the Wikipedia entry for ‘Magna Carta’ which explains when the provisions of Clause 61 (right to challenge the King’ s power) were annulled.

    Which ‘Baron’ is’Raymond St. Claire’ saying he swore an oath of alliegance to exactly?

  7. Great work Adam, though I fear the old saying that you can’t reason someone out of a position that they didn’t reason themselves into will never be as true as it is here.

    There is another old saying that you can never disprove a conspiracy, because anyone who disagrees is part of the conspiracy …

  8. This “judge” and whoever wrote this piece are obviously mental incompetents, unable to read and think absolutely logically. Does the writer of this piece wish to take the debate to another level? Does he dare? If so, then make yourself known on this blog and I shall debate with you quite happily (if such is needed once you read the proof that the “person” is a legal construct and can be “crushed” by pure logic plus the documents and words of the United Nations, the UK parliament, legal websites and documents and also “the girl who did not exist” (yes you read that properly).
    So start you education ……
    http://earthlinggb.wordpress.com/2012/04/03/the-girl-who-could-not-commit-a-crime/

    Now, if you want to stick with your ignorant assessment of this whole question or, if you simply wish to somehow support the U.N. which, itself, is corrupt and a legal “person” itself, then be my guest. However, if you do, I suggest you and the corrupt judge (because he knows exactly what he is doing if you don’t) keep quiet and accept defeat on this issue.

  9. Thats funny!

    – I am reading the 192 page report and might even repsond by taking apart each one of the judges arguments!

    Here we go … the first thing the judge says is this!

    an OPCA litigant in court is likely operating under instructions obtained from a commercial source, and has been told to conduct and frame his or her court activities in an unnatural, incorrect, and distorted context. The litigant is instructed to follow a script that is, in all probability illogical, and certainly contrary to law.

    Yes … but what is he referring to when he says “contrary to law” – is he, like every other judge peddling the misguided mantra of statutes enacted by a 400 year commercial company based in the UK are law, or is he referring to the old laws (of the land, the common law, which overrides all statutes (yes it does)) and the old customs that HM QE2 swore and signed a contract to protect when every man and woman in the nation invested its sovereign powers into her at “investiture”!

    “unnatural, incorrect and distorted context!”- well thats merely his opinion based upon the years of mind altering brainwashing that he’s undergone from the institutions and organisations that pay him (handsomely) to peddle this rubbish. None of what Freemen say or do is based in anything other than ancient LAW thast existed long before the parliament and which are set in stone in this land (England).

    What makes me laugh most about that statement even more is that he infers that operating on instructions from a commercial source is a bad thing. Then why is he a Judge? Judges are appointed by a commercial source, they charge for their services, the organisations that trained them charge for that, in fact their whole career has been one set of instructions issued from a commercial source, even the law books that they refer to are issued by a commercial source. What utter hyprocrasy!

    The uninformed author of this postk, who is clearly biased, doesn’t understand that Magna Carta, is, in the UK at least and immovable object that the Judiciary cannot overcome. As confirmed by Lord Renton in the house of Lords when he said …

    Lord Renton: My Lords, before the noble Earl sits down, perhaps I may mention one point in relation to his fascinating speech. He suggested that we should amend Magna Carta. We cannot do that. Magna Carta was formulated before we ever had a Parliament. All that we can do is to amend that legislation which, in later years when we did have a Parliament, implemented Magna Carta.

    Earl Russell: My Lords, the noble Lord is of course correct in relation to present legislation. However, 17th century Parliaments treated Magna Carta, in its 1229 version, as being an Act of Parliament. I spoke loosely and I hope that the noble Lord will forgive me.

    http://hansard.millbanksystems.com/lords/2000/jul/20/football-disorder-bill#column_1208

    Note that Earl Russell stated that the Parliament treated the 1229 Charter as being an act of parliament – WHAT??? How could a parliament claim that they enacted something when there was no Parliament until some 400 years after the Magna Carta(s) were written. You see – this is the kind of “smoke and mirrors” that anyone – let alone Freemen on the land face when dealing with this corrupt and treasonous parliament.

    See – its not difficult to rebut this “legalese” – which according to various versions of Blacks Law Dictionary that I posess appears to to be a language aimed at “confusing”, such as Latin did for the romans when it was first introduced to them. Which is exactluy why the legal industry has its own language – they dont want you to comprehend what it is they are doing. Therefore they wrap it all up in long words and protracted meanings to confuse you.

    • I look forward to your point-by-point rebuttal. Just a couple of things to clear up before you get into it, to help you along the way:

      Common law does NOT override statute law. In fact, it’s the other way round. It’s called parliamentary supremacy: the legislature outranks the judiciary when it comes to law-making. That doesn’t mean common and statute law can’t work together – murder is a common law offence, but the death penalty for murder was abolished by the Homicide Act 1957. Another example: it’s likely that within the next few years euthanasia – which would seem to combine both mens rea and actus reus for the common law murder – will be allowed under statute. Again, see how the common law is codified and amended by statute.

      The UK is not a “commercial company”. Certain arms of the state may have taken on a company structure in order to, for instance, enter into supply agreements. Legal personality is a tricky thing to grasp at first – you’re clearly not there yet.

      Magna Carta is by no means an “immovable object”. In fact, all but a tiny part of it has been moved aside, either abandoned or codified into later statute. Magna Carta has no special status whatsoever – it is a point of the British constitution that parliament can make any law it wants, and cannot bind its successors.

      Black Law Dictionary has absolutely no relevance under English law. And if you wish to use it as a reference (to US law), I suggest you purchase the very latest edition, and stop referring to older, superceded editions (even if they are available for free).

      • Listen, any sensible supporter of Freemen law agrees with you. The fact is that Freemen numbers are growing, the lack of trust in the legal profession is growing as is the distrust in the Judiciary.

      • Common law does override statute law. Two well known examples are the “No Parliament may bind its successors” rule and the defense of duress.

        The common law death penalty for murder has been infringed in beach of the Coronation Oath but has not gone away. The common law rule “Not argued (in Court) not decided” rule covers that.

        The same principle will apply if the PTB (Fascists) try to get away with euthanasia.

        Magna Carta 1215 is a statute in force as Halsburys Laws of England confirms. Statute in the sense of 1215, a statement of the law by the Sovereign as an exercise of the Royal Prerogative. As such it has the force of an Act of Parliament but since it was not made by a Parliament it cannot be lawfully repealed by one. The “No Parliament may bind its successor” rule again.

        This is also confirmed by Halsbury’s “The extent of the Royal Prerogative has never been fully established”.

        Statutory confirmations of Magna Carta are subject to repeal, but not by implication per the recent “Metric Martyrs” Judgment.

        Re “Abandoning” law, this is unknown to the English Common Law. That is the reason why Article 1 and 2 of the Bill of Rights 1688 were put in place. In Scotland it is different (Desuetude, is acknowledged in the Petition of Right).

        The power of Parliament defined in the Bill of Rights 1688 is limited to “Amending, strengthening and preserving the laws”. The word “Amend” is correctly interpreted as “Improve”.

        There is no scope for “Abandoning” or “Codifying” in such a way as to abolish the Laws. Common Laws that is.

        You must be a member of the Bar or Law Society. Please try to imagine that you have been misinformed, deliberately.

        I am not decided as to whether the UK is a “Commercial Company”. The Crown, in its City of London guise, is a Corporation however.

        I agree that no reliance should be placed on Black’s Law Dictionary.

  10. I simply ask you to argue or explain away this fundamental logic from the above referenced blog: IF the girl DID NOT EXIST, according to “law” (the legal world) and she could not be “seen” by a court as existing, and therefore, could not be “granted” any “benefits” legally – such as a passport or gain a job etc – then you CANNOT have ying without yang. If the law did not recognise her as existing then it is logically impossible for the law to recognise her as having broken the law!
    Now answer that. Try to dismiss the logic or shut up!

    • She did exist, but had a tough time proving her identity. The BBC was applying journalistic licence to write a catchy headline, but I expect irony or mere puff is too much for the Freeman mind to cope with.

  11. The Rule of law is based on democracy and the Freemen movement is about changing the views towards are current legal system which has long lost sight of its democratic origins.

    I completely agree that there is too much focus on outdated law and various acts and interpretations of the law which are nonsensical at best. BUT the underlying idea of having a jury with simple to implement and understand common law where Judges administrate rather than decide is a sound one.

    There are plenty of sound Freemen arguments but most legal observers are unwilling to discuss them since the lawyers and barristers who have made justice inaccessible in interference with their human rights would have most to lose (money).

    Freemen is not something which exists but something which is hoped for. Until that time comes it will need to mature, refine and gather support against an outdated and inaccessible justice.

    W

  12. They can come up with as many arguments as they like.

    I will continue to withhold as many taxes from this corrupt system as I can for as long as it takes to force change and stop the illegal wars of aggression, the ridiculous surveillance state, the ongoing erosion of our civil liberties and the fraud and collusion between corporations and elected and public officials.

    Everyone should do the same, because if you do or say nothing, you are complicit and they will win.

  13. Everything he states can be thrown back at him so i would say thanks for the ammo .i am neither poor out of work or in desperation i am an ex policeman and find his trivialisation of common law very very worrying indeed.heres an idea why dont the high court open up some form of open debate and rhetoric on this….i am looking to put myself in peaceful rebellion for my peers

  14. I’ve nothing against Freemen etc opting out of paying taxes and refusing to conform with the ‘state machine’, just so long as they don’t use any of the amenities paid for by taxes. Such as roads, refuse collection, the emergency services, education etc.

    The biggest irony of the Freemen movement is that they claim that the legal system is an impenetrable system orchestrated by lawyers to shackle mankind, yet when they present their arguments, they are infinitely more impenetrable and convoluted than even the most complicated of statute (save perhaps for the new immigration rules).

    • Your argument appears to be that we should just put up with all the corruption and misuse of the law because we rely on certain services that are beneficial.

      If we removed all of the bad things from the ‘state machine’ then the tax we would pay for the beneficial services would be much lower.

  15. P.P.S The fact that this well respect blog is recognising the impact of Freemen is an important step, respecting criticism of the more outlier positions that some associate with Freemen is also important in refining the new future of law.

  16. in Canada, the Canadian constitution act 1982 states in section 52 that it is the supreme law of Canada… supreme meaning no law is greater than or equal too. section 32 states that it only applies to the government, members of the gov. or those acting in a specific capacity as an agent for the gov…. so it’s no more than corporate police, just like walmart or mac donalds has. How can their corporate policy effect me if i’m not in their employ?

    • i find it very interesting that people don’t like this… it comes directly from the Canada Constitution Act… don’t like the act? don’t like that it doesn’t apply to me, unless i’m an employee of theirs? what part don’t you like?

  17. When your elected representative turns his back on you and votes in favor of a corporate business (the party line) on laws which benefit few, can the law then be seen as representative? Maybe it’s corrupt…

    If the whole system starts looking corrupt then people have every right to walk away from none democratic laws, representation is supposed to be democratic (isn’t that why we vote?)

    Politics, courts and public services have been infested by special interests (I think special means private in legalese?) There will come a tipping point where people will say enough. The Freemen have a system to go back to that may need work, but the alternative may suit people less. Ultimately the people will decide, and no amount of press one way or the other will stop them.

    First you gotta get mad! LOL

  18. Everything he accuses a freeman of being is a description of himself and the system.I am an ex policeman and now an electrical engineer so complete opposite of all he thinks free men are.I also find his trivialising of common law very very disturbing seems like the system seems worried surely an open system there for the people would open this up for debate

  19. Adam, I am a loyal follower of the UK Human Rights Blog. In fact, I occasionally send links to UKHR blogposts via a daily International Religious Freedom Headlines service I maintain for more than 1000 subscribers worldwide. But, as an even more seriously loyal member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, I must record my objection to your using a silly and offensive graphic containing an image of Joseph Smith, who has nothing whatsoever to do with this subject, to accompany this blog. I can only assume that you are not actually responsible for such thoughtlessness. Perhaps a staff person found the image in digital a file somewhere, alongside a digitally dusty copy of A Study in Scarlet. In any event, reconsider, please? Regards (and thanks for your otherwise ordinarily very good work) from a grandmother-lawyer-academic in Provo, Utah. P.S. Also recommended, a Meet-an-Actual-Mormon endeavor. You could begin with David Rutley, MP.

    • DDT – this was my picture choice, I am sorry but I had no idea it depicted Joseph Smith. I had just been looking for a snake oil image. I had no intention to involve the Mormons in this post. I have changed the image on both Freemen posts.

      All the best and thanks for the kind words,

      Adam

      • Mr Wagner, you cannot simply make a one sided argument while ignoring another very well, and factually based, researched one. You either take the time to read the blogposts I have posted in earlier comments and we debate the points and issue which blow this entire Judge’s argument out of the water or you continue to ignore the points made because you simply do not have a logical leg to stand on. Which is it?

  20. This is fantastic work by Mr. Rooke, and will provide much fodder, reverse engineering, appeals, judicial reviews and constitutional motions by self represented hobbyists and enthusiasts … The court has moved one step forward, yet 2 steps back in releasing such a decision as the decision itself may serve as a stone for this movement to sharpen their skills. I’ve watched as many started out with bumbling, vexatious and idiotic tactics only to inadvertently gain a lot of court experience and some years later present as polished and much more sophisticated students of the legal procedures. Its really hard so say how this movement will turn out and what new twists and turns will lie ahead ! I enjoyed reading Mr Rooke’s material but fear he missed the bigger picture of the insidious back story as to why a great many people are doing this to begin with ! The one thing I can say is that the digital age is catching up to the legal profession and will change it, hopefully for the better!

    • I’m not sure it’s that polished: in most of the footage I’ve seen they just seem to shout a lot. No wonder so much writing takes place in capital letters.

      • Yes much of what I have seen online is quite crude, but I have followed and documented several that have gone on to become very good… One now works for a constitutional firm in Canada as a strategist and legal researcher. Some find they have an aptitude or interest in legal matters quite by accident as a result of their beginnings as typical “freemen” – sort of like a street level free law school of sorts. One that I documented sharpened his skills by submitting countless motions for a relatively insignificant summary offense ( which he claims he conjured for the purpose of getting an audience in court to practice his approaches ) At the end of 26 months, 34 court appearances, 2 judicial complaints, 1 judicial recusal, 9 NOCQ’s, 4 judicial reviews, and a trail, he actually won the case on a stay and inevitably cost the Court and Crown many thousands to prosecute the case. The Crown had actually pleaded with him to give up – but he would not consent to any negotiation with the Crown … He wanted as he said “the Justice to finish grading his papers” and “extract the maximum amount of free learning” he could from his appearances in court. This man drafted and researched all of his own motions and the first ones were absolutely terrible, but by the final NOCQ court motion, the judge presiding the case actually had to commended him on how polished he had become in both written and oral legal arguments ! It has actually been a really positive story !

  21. Whilst I agree on many points

    the judge goes over the top ignoring some fundamentals of law.

    the people themselves in republics, such as the individual states and the United States of America, and the republic of Ireland, are sovereign…

    > “…at the Revolution, the sovereignty devolved on the people; and they are truly the sovereigns of the country, but they are sovereigns without subjects…with none to govern but themselves; the citizens of America are equal as fellow citizens, and as joint tenants in the sovereignty.”
    — Ref: CHISHOLM v. GEORGIA (US) 2 Dall 419, 454, 1 L Ed 440, 455 @DALL 1793 pp471-472

    He also ignores some important constitutional aspects, which are dangerous, the common law is superior to statutes inc in Canada as it is a common law jurisdiction

    •The King is subject to the law
    •So are his servants

    Statutes that usurp the Law of the Land
    •English common law rights of the people of England
    Laws are liable to be struck out in their entirety, due to ‘MISCHIEF RULE
    •To decide whether an act of parliament is lawful judges must consider:
    •1. ‘What was the common law before the making of the Act?’
    •2. ‘What was the mischief and defect for which the common law did not provide?’
    •3. ‘What remedy the Parliament hath resolved and appointed to cure the disease of the commonwealth?’ And,
    •4. ‘The true reason of the remedy’

    Chief Justice Sir Edward Coke of the King’s Bench ruled that when a law is repugnant or impossible to perform:
    ‘the common law will intercede and strike it down’

    •Judge Coke:
    •”…when an Act of Parliament is against common right and reason, or repugnant, or impossible to be performed,
    •the common law will control it, and adjudge such an Act to be void.”

    By Caroline Davies
    12:00AM GMT 24 Mar 2001
    FOUR peers invoked ancient rights under the Magna Carta yesterday to petition the Queen to block closer integration with Europe.
    The Duke of Rutland, Viscount Masserene and Ferrard, Lord Hamilton of Dalzell and Lord Ashbourne were imbued with the spirit of the ancient Charter, thrust on King John in 1215. In accordance with the Charter’s Clause 61, the famous enforcement clause, the four presented a vellum parchment at Buckingham Palace, declaring that the ancient rights and freedoms of the British people had to be defended.
    The clause, one of the most important in the Charter, which was pressed on King John at Runnymede, allows subjects of the realm to present a quorum of 25 barons with a petition, which four of their number then have to take to the Monarch, who must accept it. It was last used in 1688 at the start of the Glorious Revolution.
    The four peers, who were all thrown out of Parliament in November 1999, proved they had that quorum by presenting Sir Robin Janvrin, the Queen’s private secretary, with the petition signed by 28 hereditaries and letters of support from another 60. In addition, they claim the support of thousands of members of the public.
    They say that several articles in the Treaty of Nice agreed by Tony Blair in December will destroy fundamental British liberties. The Queen has 40 days to respond. Under the Magna Carta’s provisions, if the Sovereign does not observe the Charter the people may rise up and wage war on her, seizing castles, lands and possessions until they have redress.

    The issue is people are clutching at what ever straws maybe available to deal with what is a very corrupt system, equality under the law needs to be restored.

    Remove the plank from the legal system’s eye!

  22. A couple of points, which (I hope are set out nice and simply) :

    Common law is used to interpret statute of plug holes where no statute exists it does not somehow override statute.

    The core provisions of the Magna Carta were suspended very soon after it was signed and many aspects of it have been repealed. It was not written to emancipate the people, it was a document created to promote the interests of the barons. The little man could not use the Magna Carta to guarantee their rights in the 1200s any more than he or she can now. Arguments that bang on about the Magna Carta are at best uninformed and meaningless.

    The validity of an argument is not measured by its length. Something many Freemen could do well to remember.

    • What you are saying is in fact what the freemen are trying to ferret out – that have been enslaved – subservient and subject to the masters. If I understand them ( freemen) correctly, this is EXACTLY what the freemen are trying to change through peaceful civil disobedience in the courts !! They need not be precise in their amateur legal arguments in order to resist and protest a corrupt system ( which is really how I view what they are doing ) Last I checked protesting was still constitutionally protected right amongst the slaves, so Mr Rooke may have his work cut out for him in trying to prove contempt when for all intents and purposes these people are actively engaged in non-violent resistance and civil disobedience within the court ! As for Guru’s I suppose Gandhi, in Mr. Rooke’s view could be classified as a “parasite” along with the rest of the freemen !

    • You have it the wrong way round, statutes “Plug holes” in the common law as Paul Randall-Joliffe explains above.

    • Core provisions of Magna Carta 1215 “suspended”? Halsbury’s Laws of England does not agree.

      The force of the Common Law is the number of generations of our ancestors who have upheld it.

      See Paul Randal-Joliffe’s authorities above. It is unsubstantiated opinions which are uninformed and meaningless.

  23. And finally… I had to laugh when Mr. Rooke talks about how “terrible” it is when these guru’s take advantage of the ignorance of people who are suffering and may not know any better! This was a tough pill to swallow when a large percentage of convictions in non-freemen related, criminal trials are secured because rights of the accused where voluntarily or deceptively “waived” and or “not advanced” by the the accused. In the Canadian legal system people don’t have rights unless they are smart enough to advance/preserve them, or rich enough to pay for someone competent and motivated ( $$$ ) enough to advance/preserve them conscientiously. Since when has the Court been uncomfortable allowing the ignorant and weak to walk the plank of jeopardy because of their own ignorance. It is common course for Judges / Justices / JP’s to sit back and watch daily as the “weak and ignorant” convict and incriminate themselves with their own admissions and ignorance of their rights. This happens thousands of times per day in every court in Canada and most certainly in front of Mr. Rooke during his days on the bench… It seems when it works in the legal professions ( $$$ ) favor, Mr. Rooke has no objection to “let he who can be deceived, BE deceived” – or is he simply taking issue with those who are not from a law society “deceiving” the weak and meager ! People in lower socio-economic classes already distrust the legal system and expect to get screwed. What is wrong with making a bit of noise, protest, revoke consent, rattle a few cages and learn some legal procedures along a one-way road to your nearly certain fine ( that they won’t pay anyways ) or imprisonment ? At least when they are doing time don’t feel like they did not resist. Resistance to a corrupt system is sustenance to the soul which has been documented and acknowledged in many struggles throughout history. The freeman movement is simply a non-violent resistance / civil disobedience to a system that many in the public have lost faith in!

  24. Government operates under the consent of the governed. Slavery was abolished. Your catch phrases and fluffy words are just opinion. Law is based on facts not opinion. Judgments not based on law are not in honour and invalid regardless of how strong your opinion is. Do some research, it’s all readily available and free. Your article is biased and one sided. Like the judges decision it was made without regard to the laws which have been established by the governed. If he doesn’t like being troubled by people who know more about the law than he does maybe he should do his own research or go work for McDonald’s

  25. Predictably, some here are claiming that this judgment is legally wrong and that Freeman-style claims remain ‘the law’.

    This raises the question of what it means to say something is the law, when no court has ever accepted it as valid, and no one in the executive or legislature agrees either. Surely you are confusing the question of ‘what the law is’ with ‘what you want it to be’. Using ‘the law’ in that way is simply meaningless, or at best confusing.

    There are certainly laws which are unjust. The council tax law, to take just one favourite example, really is in many ways unjust and regressive, particularly the way it’s enforced. But to simply assert that it isn’t even really the law at all is to miss the point, as it excuses those who are to blame. It’s no different than if Nelson Mandela had claimed he wasn’t really in prison, because the walls were the wrong colour. To fight injustices and make the law fairer is hard work; to just put on a ‘magic hat’ and pretend the problem doesn’t even really exist is an intellectually vacuous cop out.

    • LAW is esoteric… It is real only if people support a belief that it is real. Freemen have a somewhat colorful or bizarre, yet conscientious and honestly held belief that regulatory law does not apply and that in and of itself removes mens rea from much of what the state tries to prosecute them for.

      Rooke is cleverly trying to dissuade people from advancing their conscientious beliefs by threats and intimidation of a contempt of court charge. However, in Canada if a belief is honestly held ( even if mistaken ) it can form a defense for which the onus of Crown becomes proving the accused does NOT hold the particular belief. Good luck Rooke !!

      I find this debate fascinating and totally agree with the post below that the entire “legal profession” have themselves been peddling snake oil for a long time. Laywers and judges have long embraced a system so far removed from common sense and so full of procedure and obscure vernacular as to now face the a dramatic grass roots courtroom revolution intent on re balancing the scales of justice and even rivals Matlock for court room dramas :)

      This movement may be the antithesis to the legal profession which has unintentionally given birth to its own incestuous bastard twin… LOL !

  26. After reading all of these cynical posts, I have to sit back and look at what is being said by 2 groups of people here. You will laugh at this. I did.

    You have group (A) and (B)

    Group (A) slaves mocking another group who claims to be free. <these MUST be the slaves otherwise there is no need to mock at the free)

    Group(B) free people being mocked at by group (A) for claiming to be free. <these must be the free people who really are free because they are being mocked at by people who don't know they are slaves by their own words and actions.

    I suppose by now if you haven't recognized it by now, you were never free to begin with.

    now sleep on that…

    • Read all your points Gaylan and let me assure you, people like Adam Wagner and the rest of the slaves who administer this site CANNOT acknowledge ANY of this for, if they do, they acknowledge that they are weak minded serfs to a system that has them enslaved and, with all their “legal knowledge” they either can’t recognise it OR they are happy to cover for it. Either way, their wilful ignorance begs the question: How “intelligent” are these people?

      • the age of awakening is upon us…

        enjoy the ride and see where it takes us.

        All we can do now is enjoy what life there is, because soon it will be very different.

        and probably not in the way we all dreamed it would be.

        cheers

  27. What I find ironic about the entire premise of the article is that you have one brand of snake oil salesmen accusing another brand of snake oil salesmen of being “snake oil salesmen”. When will legal bloggers realise the more they attack Freemen the more they expose themselves to the same level of criticism? The fact remains our current legal system is a shambles administered by a group of individuals who operate professional under the same principles of a masonic lodge yet have the audacity to criticise others who start forming their own mad societies (while I am writing this trying to remember whether the legal professional is the second or third least respect profession in the UK…)

    edit

  28. I for one was never registered at birth so that proves that i am sovereign and i do abide by the law of the land, all statutes have not got the force of law unless you agree to it and the magna carta is the law that was formed in romnymied in wales in 1213, and there is more than 10 commandments i suggest you read them, then you will see what the corrupt system has been hiding from you all.

    • Pardon me,

      Lacking a registration does not “prove” one is sovereign. It is merely evident you were born “without debt”. Or should I say you were born out side the beast? Although a noble gesture (claim) one MUST prove now for the “claim” to be fact that one born WITHOUT a BC makes one “sovereign”. It does not make one sovereign. Sovereignty is a walk of life, or a lifestyle as some would think. It is as-a-king without subjects, it is one who questions well, it is one who can acknowledge the BC as the dead entity created by Caesar to snare the unwitting and unlearned.

      “Give unto Caesar what is Caesar’s”

      However I DO agree 100% with the later of your statement. Statutes do NOT have force of law unless you “consent” to them, And the “10 commandments” (over 600 to be just a little bit more accurate) is a fallacy. Yes, there is a LOT of misinformation out there.

      People have been duped all their lives, and now that the information is becoming “self evident” that ALL men are “created equal”, they are waking up in droves as they realize one who holds an office has LIMITED capacity (less authority) and one without an office has UNLIMITED capacity (all authority).

      Because you can’t conceal a fraud and usurp authority over the creator by that fraud.

      All things done in darkness will come to the light.

      If authority can NOT be questioned then it isn’t authority, it is diktat at the barrel of a gun.

      “He who does not repel a wrong when he can, induces it.” maxims

      cheers

  29. I would like to bring to your remembrance a claim made by “Elizabeth the Second by the Grace of God of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and of our other realms and territories Queen Head of the Commonwealth ~ Defender of the Faith .. By the Queen herself signed with her own hand.

    Does she not acknowledge her own oath as a defender of the faith?

    Is the world (realm) now not evident she has failed miserably at her JOB under her oath. Another sad point in fact: AS the SO CALLED defender of the faith she has allowed lawyers who are crooked liars and thieves to infiltrate her very own kingdom. These lawyers (by right) “according to scripture she DEFENDS” are now ruling the world (realm) she promised to defend. ?? is there something wrong with that picture??

    She knows the truth. Yet she will not say one word. Is it not true that “It is a fraud to conceal a fraud” and “What otherwise is good and just, if it be sought by force and fraud, becomes bad and unjust.”

    Is it not true her entire kingdom was enlarged by conquest? (force)

    Is that not prima facia evidence the people are shammed?

    She (the alleged queen) knows that man made law (the satan) aka the ego which is code of law, is NOT law. It is color of law. And it only applies to dead things aka corporations. Otherwise how can a creature of law, have more authority than it’s creator?

    Can you create a corporation and that corporation have more power than you?

    We fell so far away from the truth, we are now scrambling to put all the pieces back together again.

    What has the living to do with the dead?

  30. And he said, Woe unto you also, ye lawyers! for ye lade men with burdens grievous to be borne, and ye yourselves touch not the burdens with one of your fingers.

    Luke 14:46

  31. The Parliament of Canada, affirming that the Canadian Nation is founded upon principles that acknowledge the supremacy of God, the dignity and worth of the human person and the position of the family in a society of free men and free institutions;

  32. re/ gaylan
    thank you for them true words you make it so easy to understand only if more people looked in to the magna carta and the british constitution they would see the crimes that are being made against us all.

    • thank you weazle.

      I don’t find it surprising that more haven’t set their minds to look into “accusations” of government further and try to debunk the truth that is self evident.

      After all they are too dogmatic in their view via being “programmed” into a slave mentality at inception. It’s the only way to control the masses who are lost at sea and don’t know it, even though they think they are alive. That’s the difference between being free and being subject.

      Maxim of law says “He who considers merely the letter of an instrument goes but skin deep into its meaning. ” And to help illustrate that I would bring to the remembrance of a people’s so called former president.

      “It depends on what the meaning of the word ‘is’ is.”

      This is likely to incite a unintelligent being to be put into a round room and told to find a corner to sit in. Otherwise an open invitation into the truth by the few who can see through the veil.

      But it couldn’t ring truer in any form of State or State of hypocrisy. “Men can never escape being governed. Either they must govern themselves or they must submit to being governed by others”…

      In search of truth and self governance. With the law written upon the tablets of our hearts.

      cheers

  33. 4 Days have passed and no response from Crackers. Perhaps he checking some textbooks and reconsidering his position re the supremacy of the Common Law over Acts of Parliament.

    Another example for him to consider- Jury Nullification.

    Over to you Crackers. You said that you were waiting for a response.

  34. Crackers 2.44 pm 1st October

    “I look forward to your point-by-point rebuttal. Just a couple of things to clear up before you get into it, to help you along the way:…”.

    7 days and counting. No reply from Crackers.

  35. Matters are being complicated to try and pull the wool over the people’ eyes. There are 4 Common Laws to which we are all subjected. 1 Do Not Breach the peace 2,Do Not cause harm to anyone 3, Do Not cause loss to anyone and 4, Do Not be mischievous in your acts and promises. Acts of parliament are just that acts which means pretend. If they were laws then surely they would be called Laws of Parliament. Acts and Statutes are made primarily for the purpose of removing monies from those found guilty of breaking them. But to be found guilty of breaking an act or statute you have to give your consent to those enforcing them, without it they have no further recourse.

  36. A fascinating blog to read, and this will be my first ever entry into a site…hey hey.. I have been reading and listening for a long time, for just over 6 yrs, and yes I know before any Troll gets me I will need longer!!

    I post a question……..

    Setting the scene:

    (excuse the grammar I have little to no formal education, although I did walk past a school, once upon a time.)

    The State, and I mean all current accepted Western Law form, is absolutely necessary for our species to co-exist. It has brought us war, but also peace, ignorance, but also bliss. It was meant to be, otherwise it would not have been.
    The duality of man has always existed from the first moment man saw his reflection, and doubted his own existence. The mind of man was only surpassed by the minds of men and Law was born to help and protect all men, but especially the ones with minds…Lawyers and Judges are patriarchs to the oldest and greatest of man(to make sense of the void).

    If we are to judge the actions and not the rhetoric, to see beyond the sophistication of the WORLD then we must accept that something is wrong; (Contemptus mundi). I am not responsible for the utter contempt shown to our mother planet, nor the wars and diseases, the poverty, the rape, torture, murder, Jim’ll fix it and East Enders; but I was once, and only the Law had shown me this.

    The system like the tower of Babel, ever a construction site, is necessary for us to reach up to the heavens. I have done a little bit of construction and engineering in my time and one thing I know, if the foundation is wrong it will fail eventually, at best as in Pisa, it’s reach will be restricted. ‘Fortis est veritas’ is in itself a translation of a much older language. There is a gun in the room, logic dictates this and there is no time now for a Socratic argument to point this out.(excuse the fallacy)

    The question:

    Is it possible to create a new State, a new tower of Babel,?…. so to speak. One that is perfected as far as within the tolerances of the mind of man. If not, no matter, my soul is safe but what an adventure that would be. But if so yes, then it could not come from within the system, as it has a duty to protect itself (unless the trader priests know something I don’t).
    ……..is the impossible possible? If so what would it look like?

    ps. Mike…. you made me laugh out loud, thankyou…

  37. anyone who thinks they own anyone or that someone holds has any obligation to anything for no reason is a INSANE AUTHORITARIAN that doesn’t want to do everything involved in sustaining a human life independently … lazy collectivist … scum … what goes around, comes around, and most have children ….Mans freedom will come again

  38. Adam Wagner,
    You might have had some legal training, but you clearly need some schooling in writing accurate texts and being a responsible journalist/blogger. You need to go back to the drawing board and properly research the freeman movement. One glaringly inaccurate item in your, and the judge’s, report is your and his claim that the so-called “gurus” usually charge for their advice to, and thus take advantage of the litigants. This is simply wrong, because the freemen, in almost every situation, give their lawful advice for free.

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