Woolwich church faces more charges after ignoring COVID-19 rules once again

The Trinity Bible Chapel in Woolwich, Ont. @TrinityBibleChapel / Instagram

A church in Woolwich, Ont., is once again in hot water for ignoring provincial COVID-19 regulations.

Waterloo Region Chair Karen Redman announced that bylaw enforcement officials had issued further charges against the Trinity Bible Chapel on Thursday.

Read more: Woolwich pastor faces fine of up to $100,000 for Sunday service ignoring COVID-19 lockdown

“Bylaw enforcement attended Trinity Bible Chapel on Sunday, April the 4th, and observed approximately 300 people attending indoor services,” Redman said.

“The church has a capacity for 575 people. Under the provincial regulations, the capacity for the church would be 86.”

The Trinity Bible Chapel has been racking up charges on and off since Christmas.

These are the first new charges laid against the church since it was elders were ordered to pay $38,000 last month after they were found in contempt of court.

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In addition, they were also ordered by the court to pay another $45,000 in court fees.

Read more: Doug Ford issues warning to Woolwich church: ‘there will be consequences’

The church has been in the news previously — and has even attracted comment from Ontario Premier Doug Ford.

A spokesperson for the region says there were two charges laid on Thursday, bringing the total laid by local by-law and police officers to 26, all of which are before the courts.

“The maximum penalty for organizing an event exceeding capacity limits under the Re-opening of Ontario Act is a minimum fine of $10,000 to a maximum fine of $100,000 for an individual and $100,000 up to $10 million for a corporation upon conviction,” region spokesperson Stacey Abbott told Global News in an email.

The church previously had been fined after holding services despite a stay at home order which restricted gatherings including ones at churches which began on Boxing Day.

Ford issued an emergency brake on April 1 which limits current capacity at churches to 15 per cent.

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