Reservist with alleged links to neo-Nazi group relieved of service
The Canadian military has told a reservist accused of having connections to a neo-Nazi group that he is being relieved of his duties.
Master Cpl. Patrik Mathews will no longer participate in any military activities and will not return to work, according to a statement from the Department of National Defence.
“This action was deemed necessary, considering the seriousness of the allegations and the risk to unit morale and cohesion,” the department said.
“It is incumbent of our leaders to know their soldiers, and to take measures when they have acted in a manner that is not aligned with our beliefs and culture of respect for all people. We have taken decisive action, and we will continue to exert full energy in removing those from our ranks who harbour extremist ideologies.”
Mathews’ voluntary release from the forces will not be finalized for another few weeks, but he is no longer in possession of a uniform.
Mathews, 26, joined the reserves in 2010 and had been a combat engineer with the 38 Canadian Brigade Group based in Winnipeg.
The military had been investigating him since the spring due to alleged links to a hate group called “The Base,” a sister organization to the neo-Nazi group “Atomwaffen.”
RCMP officers raided a home registered to Mathews last week, where they seized several firearms, but did not charge anyone with a crime.