The 64-year-old North Vancouver woman, who pleaded guilty to setting traps for mountain bikes on several trails on the North Shore, has been sentenced to three years probation and 150 community service hours.
Tineke (Tina) Kraal, initially faced three serious criminal charges that included setting a trap, mischief to property and mischief to endangering life, but pleaded guilty in September 2015 to the lesser charge of mischief rendering property dangerous, useless or inoperative.
In court today Kraal said she was sorry and made it clear that she did not intend to hurt anyone by putting sticks across bike paths. Kraal’s lawyer, Martin Peters, told Global News today that she only intended to slow people down. Crown was asking for three months house arrest and three years probation whereas Peters wanted a conditional discharge.
Crown was asking for 240 hours of community service from Kraal, which is the maximum number of hours under the criminal code that can be sought. Peters said he did not believe Kraal’s case warrants the maximum amount.
“You have to ask yourself is this the worst case? Is it deserving of the worst and the most serious sentence in the terms of community service. I say it isn’t. It should be about 50 hours and that way she will pay back to the community for what she’s done,” Peters said.
The other concern the defence lawyer raised with the court is the Crown wants Kraal to do community service for the North Shore Mountain Biking Association, who, as Peters said, are the people that have threatened her since her arrest.
According to Peters, the association “threatened her in the social media, they threatened to kill her, they threatened to damage her house and now the Crown wants her to go work for these people.” He believes, in this case, the court should separate the victim and the offender.
However Peters said in a statement to Global News that he incorrectly identified the group responsible for allegedly harassing her. In in it he said:
“Today I gave an interview to Global News in which I referenced messages that had been posted on the nsmb.com forum. In doing so, I at no time meant to imply or suggest that those who had posted messages on the nsmb.com forum were in any way connected with the North Shore Mountain Biking Association. This is a separate organization which I understand is in no way related to nsmb.com forum or those who may have posted messages on it relevant to my client.”
NSMBA Vince Beasse also said in an email to Global News that it was not the NSMBA but instead was a forum hosted on an online mountain bike publication, NSMB.com, that allegedly threatened Kraal. The threatening comments made on the online mountain biking site were taken down by moderators.
Beasse said in his email, “the NSMBA is a non for profit registered charity whose purpose is to maintain trails on the North Shore. The NSMBA is a voice for the mountain biking community of the North Shore. We protect and maintain the trails as environmental leaders, focused on sustainability through education and action. We develop trail networks that provide challenge and progression while fostering mountain bike culture and a community that embraces our sport as a positive force.”
Video footage taken in 2014 showed her setting up logs and rocks across Quarry and Lower Skull trails on Mt. Fromme with the intention to obstruct mountain bikers. Two mountain bikers, who use the North Vancouver trails regularly, took it upon themselves in December 2014 to purchase, install and monitor security cameras in the hopes of catching someone who was intentionally setting up barricades on the trails.
Between Aug. 1 and Dec. 29, 2014, the bikers noticed obstructions on the trails, which at times, were dangerous for them and other bikers.
Kraal was caught numerous times on the hidden cameras, appearing to intentionally lay logs, branches and rocks on the Quarry and Lower Skull trails. North Vancouver RCMP arrested her in the early morning on Jan. 4, 2015 at the head of the Quarry Trail, located just off the 1200-block of Dempsey Road.
Fortunately, no one was seriously hurt or injured in these incidents.
She was eventually released with conditions to not attend or go near any biking trails.
~ with files from Amy Judd