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Occupy protesters plead their case as court decision looms

As the clock ticks down to Monday morning’s court ruling on the Occupy Toronto eviction, the protesters are trying to prove the city doesn’t have the authority to evict them from what they say is actually land belonging to St. James Cathedral.

“Nowhere in this agreement does it state that the transfer of the western part of the land is governed by the city in any way, shape or form. It actually transfers all rights to St. James Cathedral,” said Occupy protester Taylor, referring to a land deed document from 1959.

The demonstrators are looking to the church for protection.

“We’re seeking still to work in partnership with the church and what we’re afraid of is even the church is feeling the pressure of the city, and these greater authorities,” said another protester.

But earlier this week, the Anglican dean of Toronto, Rev. Douglas Stoute, said it is up to the city to decide whether the protesters can stay.

Stoute is also urging the demonstrators to obey whatever ruling the court hands down on Saturday.

On Sunday, protesters also discussed security issues at the camp, revealing they discovered explosives in a demonstrator’s tent earlier this week.

“When we found these fireworks in the person’s tent, we were quick to move them off site. We hung on to them for a future date. Initially we were concerned of course of the optics of the situation. Now in the lead-up to the eviction, we want to assure the people of Toronto that our commitment to non-violence is paramount. The actions we did today, which was turning over the fireworks and other devices to the Toronto Police is a sign and a symbol of how committed we are to peace,” said protester Antonin.

The ruling on the future of the Occupy Toronto campsite is expected to be handed down at 9 a.m. Monday morning.

With files from Saphia Khambalia