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Current Affairs 2008 - Chronological (120 items)

Nov 29, 2008 Suburban Grow Ops Not As Seen On TV WHILE wheat and canola farmers struggle with crazy commodity-price swings and wacky weather, producers of Manitoba's No. 3 cash crop appear to be immune from the national farm crisis. Marijuana growers seem to be enjoying excellent market conditions these days, judging by the sheer number of cultivation operations busted up by Winnipeg police and rural Mounties..... If federal policy were as helpful to wheat and canola farmers as it appears to be to criminal gangs, there might not be a national agricultural crisis. After all, farmers tend to be a lot nicer than bikers.

Nov 28, 2008 Illicit Drugs Should Be Legal, Officer Says David Bratzer and I share at least one opinion in common: That it costs us a pointless fortune to maintain the charade of having effective drug laws in Canada. ....in fact, Bratzer, a constable, is one of only two active police officers in Canada who does public speaking on behalf of the U.S.-based non-profit organization Law Enforcement Against Prohibition ( LEAP ).

Nov 26, 2008 Mayor's Marijuana Work Still An Issue For Media Mayor elect Brian Taylor said he's aware and sensitive to the fact that many residents are opposed to his marijuana advocacy and promised to keep his two lives separate. "I've made some concessions in terms of my civil rights," he said, in an interview. "But I'm not going to give up my right to campaign against marijuana prohibition."

Nov 22, 2008 Police Target Pot-friendly 'Yongesterdam' Police flooded the burgeoning counterculture neighbourhood known as Yongesterdam late on Thursday, raiding an openly marijuana-friendly cafe after undercover officers allegedly purchased a mug of hot chocolate and snacks laced with drugs.

Nov 20, 2008 Defelice Released From Prison Pending Appeal After being sentenced to one year in prison on October 14, Holy Smoke Culture Shop co-owner Paul DeFelice has been released from Kamloops Regional Correction Centre since October 22, pending an appeal on his conviction.

Nov 19, 2008 N Van Woman Fights Seizure Of Grow-Op Home North Vancouver woman, a 58-year-old former realtor, has appealed to the Supreme Court of Canada to halt the forfeiture of the North Vancouver house she used as a marijuana growing and selling business, generating "over $100,000 a year" in income according to the B.C. Court of Appeal. Craig is one of three Canadians challenging federal drug laws that have been increasingly used to seize homes containing grow-ops.

Nov 19, 2008 City Faces Lawsuit Over Safety Inspection Abbotsford's Public Safety Inspection Team, which targets illegal marijuana grow operations, is under fire in the courts again. An Abbotsford couple is suing the City of Abbotsford in B.C. Supreme Court, saying the safety inspection team conducted an illegal search of their home.

Nov 17, 2008 Manitoba Releases National Hemp Strategy The Province of Manitoba has released a national hemp strategy that will seek to identify new opportunities for farmers, processors, researchers and exporters. "Manitoba's farmers and processors are at the leading edge of hemp production," Agriculture Food and Rural Initiatives Minister Rosann Wowchuk ( said ) recently.

Nov 14, 2008 Cops Can Drug Test Const. Chris Baillargeon, who recently became a certified Drug Recognition Expert, is qualified to conduct a 12-step drug impairment evaluation that allows him to classify the type of drugs he identifies in an impaired driver....since the legislation was passed, he has conducted two tests in Chatham- Kent, both resulting in charges. He said the cases both involved individuals taking prescription drugs and have not yet appeared in court.

[Just how much training is required to become an "expert"?
Nov 12, 2008 Grow-op Home Seizures Challenged Supreme Court Asked If Penalty Too Severe
OTTAWA ( CNS ) - Judy Ann Craig, a former realtor with a golden touch for gardening, will try to convince the Supreme Court of Canada on Thursday that being forced to forfeit her North Vancouver home for running a marijuana grow-op is extreme punishment for her crime.

Nov 10, 2008 Proceeds-Of-Crime-Law Challenge Could Cost Provinces Millions Eight provinces will gang up on a former Carleton University student in the Supreme Court of Canada on Wednesday as it considers whether provincial governments have the constitutional power to seize the proceeds of crime. Lawyers for Robin Chatterjee will argue that crime is a federal responsibility and therefore the Ontario government's 2001 law forcing the forfeiture of everything from houses to cash is outside provincial jurisdiction.

Nov 7, 2008 Store Dumps Hemp Stock Once the smoke cleared in the fight between the City and a hemp store, the owner got his licence. A Langley City employee hand delivered a business licence to Hempyz store late Thursday afternoon. Owner Randy Caine said once he and the City came to an agreement that he would not sell hemp products, City staff assisted him in reapplying, and the licence was quickly approved.

Oct 29, 2008 Judge Warns Cops To Get Warrants B.C.'s controversial Safety Standards Act -- aimed at smoking out dangerous grow-ops -- has survived a constitutional challenge. But police officers who tag along with municipal safety inspectors must bring along a search warrant before gaining access to a home, a B.C. Supreme Court judge has ruled.

Oct 28, 2008 Drug Case Evidence Tossed It seemed a stroke of luck for Halifax Regional Police that a pair of officers responding to a car accident last year found a large quantity of drugs and a loaded handgun stashed in one of the damaged vehicles. But their luck changed Monday when a Nova Scotia Supreme Court judge ruled that the constables lied to Christopher Henderson in order to search his car because they knew they had no grounds for a warrant.

Oct 28, 2008 Appeal Court Acquits Woman Of Theft Of Electricity At Grow VANCOUVER -- Three B.C. Court of Appeal judges have overturned a woman's conviction for fraudulent theft of electricity at a Kamloops marijuana-growing operation. Although the evidence indicated that the accused, Rui Ping He, had sole control of the house at the time of a police raid, the court found she was not the owner of the house and the electrical bill was not in her name. The appeal court upheld He's convictions for pot cultivation and possession for the purpose of trafficking.

Oct 27, 2008 Government's pot appeal up in smoke TORONTO - The federal government lost a court appeal Monday, paving the way for an end to its monopoly supplying medical marijuana to patients.
Justice Department lawyers had sought to appeal a lower-court ruling that granted licensed producers the right to grow marijuana for more than one patient.
But the three-judge panel said it was not persuaded by government lawyers who argued that allowing a grower to supply more than one patient would lead to an unregulated industry.
In January, a federal court judge struck down the one-to-one ratio as unconstitutional and unnecessarily restrictive.
The ruling was stayed pending Monday's appeal.
Lawyer Alan Young, who represented medical marijuana users, said the ruling was a victory for "sick people."
"It's time for Health Canada to recognize that medical marijuana is an established part of the regiment for a lot of patients," Young said outside court.
"Instead of thwarting patient needs, they should be accommodating patient needs and hopefully this case will be a signal to them."
Authorized users who cannot grow their own marijuana can designate a grower or access government-issued marijuana supplied by Prairie Plant Systems in Manitoba.
But a group of 30 patients who challenged the regulations argued the government supply was weak and they should have the right to choose their source.
They were lobbying to be lawfully able to purchase marijuana from Carasel Harvest Supply Corp., which, under the current regime, was not allowed to supply more than one patient with medical marijuana.

Oct 25, 2008 Police Need Search Warrant For Marijuana Inspections A B.C. Supreme Court judge has upheld a provincial law that allows municipal inspection teams to investigate homes suspected of being marijuana-growing operations, but ruled that police cannot enter a residence without a warrant in a case involving a Hells Angels associate in Surrey.

Oct 25, 2008 Fed Pot Policy Panned ORONTO -- It's a marijuana "monopoly" that deserves to go up in smoke, activists say. Lawyers representing a group of 30 medicinal marijuana users will be in court Monday to fight the federal government's bid to keep control of large-scale medicinal marijuana distribution in Canada. Activists say the government-issued pot is weak.

Oct 24, 2008 Appeal Filed In Holy Smoke Case Akka Annis and Paul DeFelice, the two of the Holy Smoke workers sentenced to jail earlier this month, have filed an appeal.

Oct 22, 2008 Cops To Keep Eye On Pot-Dealing Cafe Quebec City police warn they will closely monitor the activities of a cafe that plans to sell marijuana. The operators of Montreal's Compassion Club say they will open a second shop today in the provincial capital to respond to growing demand for "medicinal" marijuana.

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