Incarcerated in two Montreal prisons from 2009 to 2015 in the SharQc case, Sorelois Serge Lebrasseur initiated civil proceedings aimed at improving medical services for disabled prisoners in provincial prisons. Several years later, the Hells Angel of the Trois-Rivières chapter won.
In a transaction approved by the Superior Court of Quebec on August 17, 2021, of which the newspaper Les 2 Rives obtained a copy, we can read that Serge Lebrasseur filed a request in September 2013, when he was imprisoned. He alleged that the defender, in this case the Attorney General of Quebec, was intentionally and unlawfully violating his rights and freedoms during his detention at the Montreal detention center and at the Rivière-des-Prairies detention center. .
Eight years later, the state agreed with him, says his lawyer, Me Rudi Daelman. “The judgment is clear: it indicates that people with disabilities have rights and they must be respected. Now, all provincial prisons will have to meet the special needs of prisoners with disabilities, ”comments Daelman.
Difficulty taking a shower
His client, Serge Lebrasseur, has difficulty moving. “For example, for him, it was difficult to take a shower since he had nowhere to stand. It may seem trivial, but this is the basis in 2021. We are there in our society. To be honest, it was about time. Prisoners have rights, too, ”says Rudi Daelman.
According to what we can read in the transaction, Serge Lebrasseur can use his wheelchair when he is imprisoned for trips of 200 feet or more. He can also use crutches for his other trips. He is allowed to take the elevator during his long journeys, to use non-slip strips in the shower and to have a second mattress, for example.
Me Daelman assures us that the purpose of this legal process was not to make money or obtain privileges over other detainees.
“The goal was to help the cause of disabled people in prison. My client is very proud to have reached this point. In provincial prisons, we talk about small sentences, two years less a day on the way down. People who, for example, may not have paid their tickets. These are not always people criminalized in these prisons. If these people were unfortunately disabled, they would be at a disadvantage compared to others, ”he continues.
The lawyer believes that the state will have to take some time before making the necessary corrections in the prisons, but that this judgment is a step in the right direction.
“We will give them time to adapt, but this decision is clear: people with disabilities can obtain adequate services when they are incarcerated,” concludes Me Rudi Daelman.
Recall that Serge Lebrasseur made the headlines recently in Sorel-Tracy, when he pleaded guilty last May to having broken his release conditions related to an act of intimidation towards a security guard. A month and a half later, his residence on rue Tellier was raided by the Sûreté du Québec as part of Operation Quincajou aimed at combating drug trafficking. The Hells Angels and the Mean Tribe motorcycle club were particularly targeted during this operation, which did not lead to any arrests, but the investigation of which is continuing.