November 29, 2022

The Queens County Citizen

Complete Canadian News World

Saint-Armand: Second Wroxham Road at home

Saint-Armand: Second Wroxham Road at home

A resident of Saint-Armand in the Eastern Townships, whose land overlooks the US border, has condemned the authorities’ inaction when it appears a second Roxham road has been built on his property.

André LaBelle thought he was enjoying a peaceful retirement on his estate in Saint-Armand, but the refugees ruined his plans.  An abandoned vehicle can be seen directly behind him on the border between Canada and the United States.

Photo by Martin Alary

André LaBelle thought he was enjoying a peaceful retirement on his estate in Saint-Armand, but the refugees ruined his plans. An abandoned vehicle can be seen directly behind him on the border between Canada and the United States.

“It’s a joke to them,” said Andre LaBelle, who has seen at least three episodes of illegal immigrants in about two weeks on his land.

Despite his repeated calls to the two agencies that manage the Canada-US border — the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) and the Customs and Border Protection Service — no one wants to take matters into their own hands.

The problem is that a network of smugglers seems to have noticed that there is a road in nearby Highgate, Vermont, that almost leads to the residence of a recently retired science teacher.

Agents are hard to find

On Sept. 12, a 59-year-old man reported an illegal crossing in the middle of the night after tire tracks were clearly visible on his property and tall grass had apparently run over a vehicle. However, sending RCMP officers to investigate the situation is inappropriate.

Two days later, the voices and headlights of a vehicle parked on the other side of the border woke Mr. LaBelle in the middle of the night.

After a while, he saw a dozen people crossing his land, especially a mother with a stroller.

The next morning, he finds a violin case on his lawn. When he reported the situation to the RCMP, Andre LaBelle had to insist for a long time that an officer come and inspect the case, because at first he opened it himself and asked him to ‘describe what he saw’ on the telephone.

About a week later, Andre LaBelle woke up to his surprise to find a gray Dodge Caravan completely stuck on the curb. Both front wheels are in Canada, while the rear wheels are in the United States. The vehicle, registered in Arizona, was apparently abandoned at the scene around midnight.

The RCMP sent two officers during the Journal's visit.

Photo by Martin Alary

The RCMP sent two officers during the Journal’s visit.

Inside were, among other things, toiletries in a travel case, a bag of chips, cigarette butts, several papers containing personal information such as car registrations showing the identity of the owner, and a cell phone.

“They left so quickly that they didn’t even see him,” said Mr. Labelle in frustration.

It returns the ball

Two RCMP officers arrived and briefly searched inside the vehicle to assess the situation, but nothing was seized or fingerprints taken. They told the man there was nothing they could do about the vehicle and told him to call the Sûreté du Québec to declare it abandoned.

For their part, American agents advised Mr. LaBelle that they would come to tow the trailer, but only after his neighbor in Vermont had harvested corn, so as not to damage his farm.

They also advised him that three other vehicles had been abandoned a few meters away from his residence, on the American side.

“They throw the ball back to each other, but meanwhile people are still spending the night, and there’s a caravan on my land,” said the pensioner.

Two cameras were installed by the RCMP

RCMP officers arrived after several steps by Mr. LaBelle to install the two cameras.

Photo by Martin Alary

RCMP officers arrived after several steps by Mr. LaBelle to install the two cameras.

Visit of Log There was a lot of interest in St-Armand yesterday from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, who sent two officers to the scene to question us and quickly dispatched a helicopter.

Over the past few days, at Andre LaBelle’s insistence, police have installed two cameras on his property.

They came in handy yesterday when an air patrol made a sweeping sweep of the pensioner’s residence minutes after the reporter and photographer arrived.

Then, a first policeman appeared on the scene, all smiling and calling the man by his name.

“We saw you on the cameras,” he confirmed with a proud look.

Cellular

Andre LaBelle took the opportunity to remind him of the situation by asking him to act. Meanwhile an agent came.

The two officials were surprised when the representative of Log A cell phone was reported to be in the vehicle. Checking on the phone, one of them confirmed that it was not their responsibility and that they were leaving the situation in the hands of the Americans.

Other questions were then redirected to the media department, which never responded to our interview request yesterday. Same story with Americans.

READ  COVID-19: CAQ unveils its surveys

“Arrived early today without too much trouble, eh?” “, began André LaBelle, with a smile on his lips, with a touch of irony.