Arrested ‘Freeman’ Andreas Pirelli headed back to Quebec

CALGARY – The so-called Freeman-on-the-Land at the centre of a rental dispute in northwest Calgary has been arrested by police.

Andreas Pirelli, also known as Mario Antonacci, came under fire after staking a claim on the Parkdale duplex he was renting and refusing to leave.

Pirelli is also wanted in Quebec on assault charges after he allegedly pushed his Montreal landlord down the stairs.

Warrants were extended Canada-wide which allowed Calgary police to arrest him around 2 a.m. on Friday on those outstanding charges.

EXTENDED INTERVIEW: Listen to some highlights of our phone call with Rebekah Caverhill on Friday, September 27. Editor’s note: This interview has been edited and is not raw.

Speaking from her home in Sylvan Lake, Pirelli’s Calgary landlord Rebekah Caverhill says she is thankful to hear the news.

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“I’m grateful, I’m so grateful,” says Caverhill. “I hope the lady in Quebec that had the problems can rest easy, that was my first thought.”

“I understand there were other people in the house and don’t know whether or not [police] got them out too, I may have squatters there,” adds Caverhill. “So I still have that to go through, and I don’t know where that’s going to take me, but at least they got him out.”

Caverhill says she will travel to Calgary to check on the state of her duplex and see if there is anyone else there.

“I think there’s a lot of damage,” says Caverhill, audibly upset. “It hurts. I don’t have a lot of money to fix it up.”

Pirelli met with a justice of the peace on Friday morning, and will be remanded in custody for the next six days until he is transported back to Quebec.

Calgary police say at this point, they don’t anticipate laying any criminal charges against Pirelli.

However, he had been charged with being an unlicensed contractor, following an undercover sting by Service Alberta.

Police can’t comment on what will happen to alleged squatters who remain in the duplex.

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On scene: Squatter talks about his involvement in the Freeman house.

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