Graeme Hamilton of National Post reports that the leader of a punk rock group whose fans rioted Tuesday night (October 14) after their concert was cancelled blamed Immigration Canada yesterday for the destruction, saying authorities had no business checking band members for criminal records.
Hours before they were supposed to take the stage at a Montreal nightclub, members of TOTAL CHAOS and THE EXPLOITED were denied entry at the Canadian border crossing in Lacolle, Que. Robert Gervais, an Immigration Canada spokesman, said they were refused because three members had records for "serious criminality" and four others provided false information to Immigration officers.
Rob Chaos, lead singer and a founding member of the 13-year-old California band TOTAL CHAOS, said he suspects the bands were targeted because of their appearance. "We have blue hair and Mohawks and stuff," he said by cellular phone as his band traveled to their next show in Cleveland.
"I'm totally pissed off about it," Mr. Chaos said. "I told the [Immigration officer] there were a whole lot of kids coming to see us. Canadian government Immigration is, in my opinion, responsible for the riots."
The singer called the Canadian border the strictest in the world and said his drummer felt discriminated against when Immigration Canada dug up his 15-year-old criminal record. Mr. Chaos said the offence was "kind of major," but noted it was committed when the drummer was 18.
"I don't think a country should have the right to pry into people's pasts. There should be a law against that," he said. He noted that the singer of British band THE EXPLOITED has "tons of things he's done," but he never has trouble entering the United States. Read more.