Quebec man arrested in YouTube murder threats against Arabs

Quebec man arrested in YouTube murder threats against Arabs

MONTREAL — A Montreal man will spend the next few days in jail after being charged in connection with a YouTube video in which someone wearing a Joker mask says one Arab would be murdered in Quebec every week.

Jesse Pelletier, 24, was arraigned on Wednesday on charges of uttering threats, possession of a false weapon, public incitement of hatred and hoax regarding terrorist activities.

Pelletier, who was arrested early Wednesday morning, will remain behind bars until his bail hearing Monday.

The person in the video was wearing a Joker mask and could be seen brandishing what looked like a pistol as he made the threats and spoke about last week’s terrorist attacks in Paris that left 129 people dead.

“It’s really time to act,” the person said in the three-minute video.

“So in the wake of the attacks in Paris, it’s really time to stop messing about and to intervene. So I and a group of people will intervene. Beginning next week, there will be murders all over Quebec…We have decided to take things into our own hands and to eliminate one Arab a week.

“There are 10 of us and we will eliminate them all, one after the other. Islam has done us a lot of harm and if we don’t do anything, nobody will be able to control anything whatsoever.”

Pelletier, who has a bone defect from birth and suffered an accident about a year ago, is in a wheelchair for the time being.

Asked outside the courtroom how her client was feeling, lawyer Audrey Amzalleg replied: “Guilty. He has a son at home, he has a wife at home. It’s a situation where he’s definitely scared of what’s going to happen.”

Amzalleg called the incident “a joke, a bad joke obviously.”

“He did not mean anything on the video,” she said. “It was a very short video. And when he realized the impact it had… he took it off. And unfortunately, as mentioned, it stayed on the Internet.

“I don’t think this is a person who deserves to be in jail. I understand that those are very severe accusations but I don’t think this is a person who should stay in jail.”

Pierre Saint-Arnaud, The Canadian Press

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