Saturday, October 01, 2005

dea go away: cannabis kidnapping of marc emery could be thwarted

A DESTRUCTIVE but very legal 'wrench' has been thrown into the carefully laid DEA plan to kidnap 'Prince of Pot', Marc Emery and two other Canadians (pictured right), and put them in an American concentration camp for selling cannabis seeds by mail order.

David McCann, a Canadian philanthropist and businessman has announced that he has hired prominent lawyer Peter Leask to file three charges of conspiracy under the 'Controlled Drugs and Substance Act' and the 'Criminal Code of Canada' naming Marc Emery and his two associates.

Quoted in the Canadian Press McCann said "If he gets charged in Canada that will have major legal consequences for that extradition request."

"Canada has been hypocritical in allowing Emery to sell marijuana seeds and collecting thousands of dollars in taxes while the city of Vancouver gave him a business license for his pot paraphernalia store"

"We have let him operate and now we let the Americans walk into our country and charge a man who they will probably lock away for the rest of his natural life in the United States for doing something that the government of Canada condoned. And you know, I got a problem with that as a Canadian."

"He broke the law in Canada and so if we are going to let him be charged he should be charged here, where he did the offense," said McCann, adding he's never met Emery.

McCann noted that Health Canada even referred patients, many of them terminally ill, to Emery if they wanted medicinal marijuana.

McCann, who now runs an art shop, hit the headlines in 1990 as a crusader against sexual abuse who triggered one of the largest sexual abuse investigations in Canadian history. He told Vancouver's '24 Hours' that now he wants to spark a national debate on Canadian sovereignty and drug policy.

Kirk Tousaw, one of Emery's lawyers, said it's possible that the United States' attempts to extradite his client would be thwarted.

That's because Section 47 of the Extradition Act says the justice minister has the discretion to refuse extradition if he's satisfied that the same conduct is the subject of criminal proceedings in Canada.

Emery, leader of the Marijuana party in British Columbia, said he sees McCann's private prosecution attempt as something positive because he's always felt he should be charged in Canada for his activities.

"His intent is to stop the extradition and have me charged under Canadian law in a Canadian courtroom," Emery said.

"I'd much rather be in front of a Canadian jury in a Canadian court. It'd probably still keep me out of the seed business for the rest of my life, alas, but it certainly would lay people's fears of a sovereignty intrusion to rest."

58% of Canadians said they were against the extradition in a poll after the kidnapping proceedings were started by the DEA at the end of July this year. At the beginning of September there were international protests in 40 cities including London and every Euro MP was given a bag of seeds and a strongly worded but polite protest letter.

Above: Cannabis Grandma says "DEA Go Away" in protests outside US Embassy in London


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