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Wiebo Ludwig on his farm in Hythe, AB January 12, 2009 the day after the RCMP finshed up the search of his property in connection with a series of pipeline bombings in northeastern British Columbia. (JOHN LEHMANN/John Lehmann/ The Globe and Mail)
Wiebo Ludwig on his farm in Hythe, AB January 12, 2009 the day after the RCMP finshed up the search of his property in connection with a series of pipeline bombings in northeastern British Columbia. (JOHN LEHMANN/John Lehmann/ The Globe and Mail)

Search of Wiebo Ludwig's property revealed copper wire, ammunition Add to ...

Police seized items including books, pens and a bag of marijuana during an extensive search of convicted bomber Wiebo Ludwig's Alberta property in January, according to documents released Friday by the Supreme Court of B.C. in Vancouver.

From his home near Hythe, Alta., Mr. Ludwig said most of the items on the list were related to everyday activities such as farming, fixing machinery or teaching the children who live on the family compound.

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He said at least two books, Harvest of Rage: Why Oklahoma City Is Only the Beginning, and an instruction manual on blasting - included in the list of items collected in the January search - also were taken when he was under investigation for oil patch vandalism in Alberta a decade ago.

"Those two [books]they took in a previous search some 10 years ago and then returned them," Mr. Ludwig said in a telephone interview. "And now they've taken them again. They probably forgot about that."

Mr. Ludwig played down the significance of other items seized in the search, including a pellet gun and pellets - which he described as children's playthings - and a broken, double-barrelled shotgun, which he said a neighbour had given to the family in case his sons could fix it.

The marijuana - 75 grams in a plastic bag - was on hand because someone had recommended it as a remedy for nausea and cramps, he said, adding that family members had grown small amounts of the plant "as an experiment" and to use its fibers for weaving.





The list of items collected in the search also includes Mr. Ludwig's DNA.

Mr. Ludwig's Trickle Creek family compound, near the British Columbia-Alberta border, was searched in connection with a string of attacks on oil pipelines in the Dawson Creek area in 2008 and 2009.

Mr. Ludwig, 68, was arrested and questioned in Grande Prairie as the search was getting under way. At that time, he says, police told him he was going to be charged with extortion. He was released the following day without being charged.

RCMP said the arrest was driven by public safety concerns, but have provided no details.

RCMP officers have spent months investigating a series of attacks against EnCana installations near Dawson Creek, in part of the province where hundreds of wells and pipelines have sprung up over the past decade.

The first attack was discovered in October, 2008, when a hunter came across a crater underneath a natural gas pipeline, days after a handwritten letter had arrived at local media outlets demanding that EnCana leave the area.

Five other bombings followed over the next nine months, with the most recent occurring on July 4, 2009.

To date, nobody has been injured in the attacks, but residents and workers have been put on edge by the prospect of a potentially deadly gas leak. Calgary-based EnCana has put up a $1-million award in connection with the attacks.

Mr. Ludwig, an outspoken critic of the oil and gas industry, moved to Alberta in 1985. After a high-profile trial, he was convicted in 2000 on five charges related to 1990s incidents of oil patch bombing and vandalism in Alberta. He was released from jail in 2001 after serving 19 months of a 28-month sentence.

He has continued to lobby against oil and gas activity near his property in Alberta. Three companies, including EnCana, are seeking a peace bond against Mr. Ludwig, his son Ben Ludwig and friend Richard Boonstra, who also lives at Trickle Creek with his family. The companies say they fear the three men will "cause injury to their employees or agents or will damage their property."

Mr. Ludwig said he plans to challenge that application in court next week.

 

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