A soldier who called on his fellow military personnel to refuse helping with the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines has been charged with an offence related to mutiny.
It’s believed to be the first time in decades that the Canadian military has laid such a charge.
Officer Cadet Ladislas Kenderesi was charged with one count of “endeavoring to persuade another person to join in a mutiny,” an offence under the National Defence Act. Kenderesi was also charged with one count of behaving in a scandalous manner unbecoming of an officer.
The charges were laid May 12 by the Canadian Forces National Investigation Service, defence officials told this newspaper.
Kenderesi had appeared at an anti-lockdown rally in December in Toronto dressed in his Canadian Forces uniform and speaking out about the COVID-19 vaccine, claiming it was a “killer.”
He called on military personnel not to be involved in government plans to distribute the vaccine. “I’m asking military, right now serving, truck drivers, medical, engineers, whatever you are, do not take this unlawful order (for) the distribution of this vaccine,” Kenderesi said at the rally. A video of his speech was posted on YouTube.
Kenderesi, who had a civilian hunting knife strapped to his Canadian Forces uniform and was carrying a non-Canadian helmet, questioned the safety of the vaccine.
“I might get in a lot of s— for doing this, but I don’t care anymore,” he said.
The crowd cheered his speech.
Department of National Defence spokesman Dan Le Bouthillier said the charges will proceed through the military justice system. “OCdt Kenderesi was removed from performance of military duties following the December, 2020, incident,” Le Bouthillier said.
Kenderesi is a member of the Reserve Cadet Instructor Cadre in Borden, ON, according to the Canadian Forces.
Kenderesi’s supporters filmed military officials reading the charges against him and posted that to a GoFundMe page for the officer cadet. The page noted Kenderesi “was charged on May 12, 2021, for speaking out against the experimental gene therapy on Dec. 5 at the human rights assembly at Dundas Square in Toronto.”
The page also stated that Kenderesi faces a maximum sentence of life in prison if convicted, but defence sources say such punishment is highly unlikely.
Kenderesi is also featured in the GoFundMe page video before meeting with Canadian Forces officials. “I’m just saying a small prayer for myself, and a prayer for Canada and Canadians, that hopefully my efforts and what I have done is not in vain,” he stated in that video.
The GoFundMe initiative is to collect money for Kenderesi’s legal battle.
Le Bouthillier said if he desires, Kenderesi has access at no cost to a lawyer provided by the Department of National Defence. “While the charges have been laid, it is currently in the referral process and no court martial has been scheduled,” he added.