Investment Banker Falsely Arrested at The G20
A Bay Street Banker’s Account of Getting Arrested at the G20 in Toronto.
My name is Marian Anders, I am 23 years old and I am an investment banking analyst by profession working for a rather large investment bank on Bay Street in Toronto.
Bankers usually work at least 60-70 hours a week and it is very common for us to come in on the weekends to work on time sensitive projects.This week was no exception but some of us opted to work from home rather than brave the temporary mania that was supposed to ensue. That was the plan at least. At around 10am on Saturday morning of the G20 weekend, I realized that I had left some vital paperwork at the office and if I valued my job I would have to retrieve it to meet my deadline that afternoon. So I quickly hopped on the bus in mid-town Toronto and took the Subway downtown.
When I hit Bloor Station a subway delay forced me to take the manageable walk down Yonge towards King/Bay. I was determined to get my documents without issue so I kept my head down with a quick pace made my way over to the skyscraper where I work. Unfortunately, all the doors were locked so I had to do a bit of clever maneuvering through Path and another Tower to get into elevator bay. I swipe my security pass take the elevator up to my floor grab my papers a bottle of diet coke from the office fridge and head back downstairs.
Not willing to risk a try of the non-functional subway system, I emerge into the daylight and start to speedwalk/jog north up to Bloor. About 8-9 minutes into my walk I hear some voices and radio static from behind me, next thing I know my face is in the pavement with a knee on top of my head. I quickly realize I am being arrested as plastic handcuffs are put on me. I try to explain that I work downtown and I just had to get something that I forgot from the office but no response from the now 3-4 cops searching me and grinding my face into the pavement.
Unfortunately, for me, I chose not to wear a suit to work like usual. I am sure this would not have happened if I had. Rather I was dressed in a Calvin Klein T-shirt, American Eagle Shorts and Basketball sneakers; not the typical banker look but surely not the protester-vagrant look either. I did however have my Card Key tagged onto my belt with photo ID, proving that I was telling the truth about working downtown. While getting stood up to my feet and swept away by a police escort I yelled for 2 minutes that my card key proved I was an employee of one of the towers. I gave up hope when a cop grabbed the card key off my belt, examined it and through it as far away as he could into an alley.
I was thrown into a cell that was maybe 10 by 20 steps in perimeter with 4 dozen other men that were mostly young in their 20s but with a couple of middle age. I was kept in the cell for what must have been about 22 hours. A few hours in a number of prisoners yelled for water and started banging on the cell doors. It took at least 2 hours before the officers finally complied. We were also given a bit of toilet paper which wasn’t much help since we were handcuffed. In my shorts and t-shirt I was freezing so i asked for a blanket but was rebuffed by the guard. Even Jews in concentration camps were afforded blankets and water. It was very cramped in the makeshift prison and not enough room for everyone to sit comfortably.
My mouth was cracked and cottonball from dehydration. I was drinking with my co-workers the night before so my body was definitely not in shape to endure this. I passed in and out of sleep catching maybe two minutes of rest overall. Instead of water we were given disgusting sandwiches which made me gag. Another prisoner helped feed me, unlike others I was never released from my cuffs. I was never given a phone call either.
After 22 or maybe 23 hours I was finally released with severe cuts on my wrist from where the cuffs had been. I walked out in the rain and head home for some sleep.