Pot Activist Jailed

Pot Activist Jailed
Posted by CN Staff on August 19, 2004 at 18:11:39 PT
By The Canadian Press 
Source: Canadian Press 
Saskatoon -- One of Canada's best-known marijuana activists was sentenced Thursday to three months in jail after pleading guilty to trafficking when he passed a joint to a supporter last March.Marc Emery, president of the B.C. Marijuana Party, was charged with trafficking after he spoke at a political rally at the University of Saskatchewan in March.
Mr. Emery's lawyer said the sentence is too strict for simply passing one joint to one person.“I do have an issue with the length of the sentence,” said Leanne Johnson. “Three months is a bit of overkill, perhaps, for passing one joint to one person.”Outside the courthouse, Mr. Emery said his devotion to marijuana won't change.“Marijuana is the most beautiful, perfect plant ever put on this earth. I'm a great devotee of it and that won't change, no matter what a judge would sentence me to.”Marijuana has provided medical benefits to many Canadians, added Mr. Emery, who has been a common figure at pro-pot rallies for years. Source: Canadian PressPublished: August 19, 2004Copyright: 2004 The Canadian PressRelated Articles & Web Site:B.C. Marijuana Party Charged with Trafficking Prosecution Goes To Pot Arrest Marijuana Activist 
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Comment #12 posted by afterburner on August 29, 2004 at 10:53:31 PT
The Answer, My Friend, Is Blowin' in the Wind
Welcome to drug-war Armaggedon 
by Reverend Damuzi (24 Aug, 2004) Can signing a petition to free Emery change anything?
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Comment #11 posted by afterburner on August 27, 2004 at 08:52:30 PT
I Think Therefore I Share But Govt Says Trafficker
' A Statistics Canada report released July 21 revealed that over one third (over ten million Canadians) have used marijuana in their lifetime. Presumably in most if not all of these instances, marijuana was transferred between individuals on a non-commercial basis (i.e. shared with a friend or spouse). Many Canadians would be surprised to learn that simply passing a joint between friends is considered trafficking under law and would lead to being put in jail. The charge of trafficking carries with it a possible seven year jail sentence for simply passing a joint to a friend. 
' Following his arrest Emery spent three nights in jail, was forced to pay $3,500 bail and additional legal costs, as well as agree to stipulations severely restricting his rights and freedoms – all for passing two joints. As one of the most tenacious, prominent and visible leaders of the cannabis political movement in Canada, Emery’s incarceration is sure to set off political fireworks in the coming months as a growing and emboldened pro-legalization community prepares to launch a full offensive against the government’s effort to revive a failed decriminalization bill in the fall. Emery’s case stands as an example of how the weak and ill-conceived Liberal decriminalization bill would do very little to improve the lives of Canadians and the flaws inherent in the current system. 
' Activists say Emery’s situation stands as an example of the injustice that continues to be suffered by many Canadians as a result of a thirty year failure to reform Canada’s outdated prohibition laws. In this day and age, no Canadian should be subjected to a prison for pot use between friends, say activists. '
--Top Story: Marc Emery Jailed for 90 Days In Saskatoon for Passing Two Joints. Province Has Major Problems With Alcohol Related Crime and Cannabis Related Law Enforcement. 
Posted by Richard Cowan on 2004-08-20 16:20:00
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Comment #10 posted by FoM on August 24, 2004 at 20:26:10 PT
Related Article from The Canadian Press
Marijuana Activists Write, Protest Over 90-day Sentence for Joint-PassingAugust 24, 2004SASKATOON (CP) - Pro-pot activists are staging protests and writing letters after well-known marijuana supporter Marc Emery was sentenced to three months in jail for passing a single joint.  Emery's supporters gathered at Saskatoon's provincial court building Tuesday to protest the jail sentence, which came last week after Emery pleaded guilty to trafficking. "We'll be here every day until Marc Emery is released," said protest co-ordinator Dana Larsen of Vancouver, editor of Emery's Cannabis Culture magazine. "I don't think this will succeed in getting Marc out early, but I think it will draw attention. Our goal really is to stop this from happening to anybody else." Emery, president of the B.C. Marijuana Party, was charged with trafficking after he passed a joint while speaking at a political rally at the University of Saskatchewan earlier this year. While it was Emery's eleventh drug-related conviction, it was the first time he has been sentenced to jail. The B.C. Marijuana Party has also begun a letter-writing campaign to federal Justice Minister Irwin Cotler. In July, Prime Minister Paul Martin promised to reintroduce legislation to decriminalize possession of 15 grams of pot or less. "The sentence, viewed by many as extreme, has evoked outrage in the marijuana community," said the party in a release. "Mr. Emery has the dubious distinction of being the first person in Canada to be charged and convicted of trafficking for passing a joint." Larsen said he wants to prevent others from being jailed for simply passing a joint. "I think most Canadians would think that's pretty extreme . . . and would look upon Saskatoon as a backward place because of that, like the Alabama of Canada," he said. "I don't think anyone else has ever been convicted of trafficking this quantity before." Seven people joined Larsen on Tuesday. They carried a pot-leaf version of the Canadian flag and handed out flyers entitled Free Marc Emery. Jay Crowter said he plans to be at the courthouse as often as possible until Emery's release. "It kind of scares me (that) a guy can go to jail for something so simple as passing a (marijuana) cigarette," he said. Emery's lawyer, Leanne Johnson, said her client won't appeal the sentence, but could be released early for good behaviour. "He'll probably only serve one-third of his sentence," she said.
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Comment #9 posted by FoM on August 24, 2004 at 12:39:20 PT
Thanks afterburner
I hope where they have Marc that it is a prison that is ok. I know prisons are never ok but I hope this time he has to serve won't be hard on him and his health.
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Comment #8 posted by afterburner on August 24, 2004 at 12:11:07 PT
In Answer to my Own Question
Marc Emery does plan to appeal his conviction/sentence, as it should be. Marc says that we in the pot culture all share joints with each other. To construe this as trafficking is a travesty, a perversion of the flawed cannabis laws. All are in jeopardy of being charged in this heinous way for the simple act of passing a joint, even under Paul Martin's proposed "decrim" bill. Canadians especially should exert whatever pressure they can exert on Liberal and NDP MPs to "lighten-up" the law to exclude such discriminatory treatment. BTW, the guilty plea was the result of a misunderstood client-to-lawyer communication.Marc Emery speaks from jail 
by Dana Larsen (23 Aug, 2004) ' Imprisoned pot activist discusses prison life and the need to change the law. '
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Comment #7 posted by FoM on August 24, 2004 at 11:30:08 PT
Related Article from The CBC
Protesters Rally Behind Jailed Pot Activist August 24, 2004REGINA  - Supporters of convicted marijuana activist Marc Emery have launched a protest in front of Saskatoon's provincial court building.On Thursday, Emery was sentenced to three months in jail for passing a marijuana cigarette to another person. He had 10 prior marijuana convictions, mostly related to his seed business.Dana Larsen, who works for Emery as editor of Cannabis Culture magazine, came from Vancouver to launch the protest. Larsen says he wants to prevent others from being jailed for simply passing a joint.About half a dozen people joined Larsen outside the courthouse. They say their protest will continue for as long as Emery remains locked up.
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Comment #6 posted by afterburner on August 21, 2004 at 09:35:38 PT
Re Marc
Can someone plead guilty, and then appeal? A plea of innocent might have led to dismissed charges, a waste of Marc's time, money and effort. On the basis of lack of co-operation by Health Canada with the Ontario Court of Appeal Oct.7.2003 ruling cannabis possession in Ontario is again unconstitutional. This can only be established in Ontario, Saskatchewan or in other provinces by court decisions until Parliament lightens up.The judges are timid about admitting that cannabis trafficking is gone, if "cannabis possession is an offense not known to the law."
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Comment #5 posted by FoM on August 19, 2004 at 20:32:26 PT
Virgil and Everyone
It was after the laws were changed. Here are a few articles.Judges Rule An End To The Pot Party: Sadness as Pot Law Valid Again: Tuesday for Canadian Cannaphiles: Court Reinstates Pot Law: 
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Comment #4 posted by Virgil on August 19, 2004 at 19:44:31 PT
JR- the rest of this story will be great
This charge came after October 7, 2003. I think it came when he was on crusade by giving speeches on college campuses.The comments by Turmel on this will be like lobster on a cannabis news buffet. 
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Comment #3 posted by JR Bob Dobbs on August 19, 2004 at 19:16:36 PT
Yeah, why did he plead guilty??
Wasn't the whole premise of the Summer Of Legalization tour - where this arrest happened - that the laws against marijuana in Canada had gone out the window because of the Terry Parker case in 2001? If so, how can he be guilty of a crime that doesn't exist? I'm sure they could still lock him UP for a crime that doesn't exist - while the legal issues get sorted out - but I thought the idea was that if Marc was taken before a judge that he'd be able to argue that there were no laws against what he was doing when he was doing it.Does Canada have a plea of "no contest" like the USA? If you're not going to plead not guilty, a plea of "no contest" makes a statement that "guilty" does not.
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Comment #2 posted by Dr Ganj on August 19, 2004 at 18:37:11 PT
Plead guilty? 3 months for passing a joint?
Why in the world would Marc plead guilty? I thought he was an activist? Where's the trial? Where are his balls?Look what Eddy Lepp was doing in Lake county, California.
Now *that's* an activist!
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Comment #1 posted by mayan on August 19, 2004 at 18:31:23 PT
Marc Emery sentenced to 3 months in jail:
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