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Caitlyn Gowriluk · CBC News
A man who says he was a Hells Angels prospect alleges in a lawsuit someone revealed to a lawyer linked to the biker gang that he was also an informant — then police didn’t protect him.
The plaintiff is listed as John Doe in the statement of claim filed in Manitoba’s Court of Queen’s Bench on Jan. 25. He became a prospect with the gang’s Winnipeg and Thunder Bay chapter around 1998 and is now in prison on a drug conviction, the statement of claim says.
After being recruited as a police source while incarcerated, the man was released in August 2013 and started feeding police information on drug shipments, illegal cigarettes and encrypted phones, the statement of claim says.
The relationship was forged by Winnipeg Police Service Const. Wes Law and later shifted to another officer, Grant Goulet, the statement of claim alleges.
The court filing says the information the man shared resulted in the arrests and convictions of “numerous” people, including during Project Sideshow, a cross-country investigation that resulted in 14 arrests.
The information also led to the arrest of alleged Hells Angels prospect Sean Demchuk, the court filing says. It claims someone let slip the plaintiff’s informant status to Demchuk’s lawyer in a 2015 disclosure, “in cavalier disregard” of their duty to protect him.
- Project Sideshow: Winnipegger convicted of trafficking cocaine, laundering money after 2-year investigation
The statement of claim suggests this person worked either for the Crown — possibly an attorney or their assistant — or the Winnipeg Police Service.
After that, the man got a phone call from his roommate, a member of the Hells Angels. The court filing says he was told the gang knew he was an informant and he was “in trouble with the Club” — which led to years on the run and multiple attempts on his life, now marked by “constant fear.”
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The statement of claim lists the City of Winnipeg, the Winnipeg Police Service, police chief Danny Smyth, officers Goulet and Law, the Government of Manitoba and Manitoba Attorney General Cameron Friesen as defendants.
None of the allegations have been proven in court, and a statement of defence has not yet been filed.
Winnipeg Police Service spokesperson Const. Jay Murray said in an email police had not been served on Sunday morning and declined to comment. The province did not respond to a request for comment.