Artur Pawlowski and his brother Dawid Pawlowski were released from custody on Monday night after being arrested on Saturday for holding a worship service. The pastor and his brother were charged with organizing an illegal in person gathering which violated COVID restrictions under Alberta’s public health order. The two were also charged with inviting others to attend an illegal public gathering. According to Artur, he was subjected to inhuman conditions while in custody.

“First 24 hours on a slab with lights on and no sleep. You could tell they have an agenda. They really wanted to make sure that we know that we are not welcome. That they don’t like us.” – Artur Pawlowski

Artur Pawlowski has been holding worship services weekly at a daycare/preschool building on 26th Avenue S.E. While he acknowledges he had received an injunction from the Court of Queen’s Bench obtained by the Alberta Health Services he chose to ignore it and proceed with holding worship services. As part of the new restrictions being imposed, police have the power to arrest individuals who held gatherings that violated the new restrictions. Artur was released on bail as long as he agrees to not hold services that comply with the limit restrictions. Sarah Miller is Pawlowski’s attorney.

“There’s the issue of whether the immediate arrest on Saturday is proper, legal. Those things will be addressed next Thursday, we have a hearing for the contempt application that AHS is bringing, but as far as the process of someone who’s been detained, it’s a very irregular process, simply because it’s not usually utilized. Criminal procedures arrest regularly, there’s processes for that. Civil procedure usually does not, so this has been an unusual 48 hours.” – Sarah Miller 

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