Ottawa Aims To Get Tough on Marijuana Grow-ops 

  Ottawa Aims To Get Tough on Marijuana Grow-ops 

Posted by CN Staff on March 03, 2005 at 23:31:59 PT
By Campbell Clark and Colin Freeze 
Source: Globe and Mail 

Ottawa and Toronto -- The federal government promised last night to consider tougher laws against marijuana grow operations, and possibly more money for police, only hours after the deaths of four RCMP officers.Public Safety Minister Anne McLellan said she had met briefly with Justice Minister Irwin Cotler and the two agreed to consider changes to a bill already before the House of Commons. She did not provide specifics.
They "want to take a look at that legislation, and we want to determine whether we have the right tools in place," she said. "There is a question of resources, clearly, and that is something as a government that we need to take up with the national force. Obviously local police forces and others are on the front lines of this everyday as well."Police have been warning for the past few years that the proliferation of marijuana grow-ops is leading to increased violence. Grow-ops are no longer the domain of casual dealers, they say, but of hardened gangsters and organized crime.According to a recent RCMP report, marijuana seizures are six times what they were a decade ago.In Ontario, police say that as many as 10,000 children have lived in homes that have been converted into marijuana factories in the past five years.Ms. McLellan said yesterday the proposed law to decriminalize marijuana, currently before the House of Commons justice committee, already contains measures to stiffen penalties for grow-operators, but that there are questions about whether the police have the tools they need to combat the problem."There is a resource issue, but I think there is also an issue around do we have the right laws in place, have we given the RCMP and other forces the right tools they need to deal with what is an amazing growth, quite truthfully, in these operations."That assessment of grow-ops as a major crime danger was echoed less than an hour later by RCMP Commissioner Giuliano Zaccardelli, who called them a serious threat."This is really a plague on our society," he said.He said, however, that while police forces face limited resources, there are laws in place to allow them to crack down on marijuana growers."We have laws. We have the means to do it."Ms. McLellan balked at immediately promising more cash for police investigations of grow operations, saying the government handed out additional funding when Ottawa outlined a national drug strategy two years ago.But now the spectre of four dead Mounties, who were gunned down while investigating an increasingly routine type of crime scene, is haunting police precincts across the country."It's going to send a shiver down everyone's spine," Vancouver Police Inspector Val Harrison said yesterday."We've been trying to say these things are dangerous. We routinely find weapons."While police are rarely injured in drug busts, many felt it was only a matter of time. Grow operations have flourished in recent years as courts handed out only fines and light sentences to offenders, most of whom police regard as members of dangerous criminal groups.Canada has introduced legislation that would decriminalize marijuana possession, but the proposed law would also increase the maximum penalties for people caught growing large amounts.Still, sentences for growers are almost always on the lighter end of the scale.Note: Ministers to consider changes to bill before the House.From Friday's Globe and MailSource: Globe and Mail (Canada) Author:  Campbell Clark and Colin FreezePublished: Friday, March 4, 2005Copyright: 2005 The Globe and Mail CompanyContact: letters globeandmail.caWebsite: Articles:It's Time for Canada To Legalize Cannabis Panel Backs Legalizing Marijuana Senate Panel Calls For Legalization

Home    Comment    Email    Register    Recent Comments    Help

Comment #52 posted by Hope on March 23, 2005 at 11:32:39 PT
Thank you, Afterburner, very much.
I do appreciate it and take your words as encouragement that people might not take me for some kind of least not everyone! Thank you. Also, I am very sad to hear that you lost your wife. 
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #51 posted by Hope on March 23, 2005 at 11:31:35 PT
Another example of what our government has become.
Unbelievable...but sadly, true. It's hard to believe...but...Journalists have been held at gunpoint in and around Red Lake to keep them from reporting! They have had their work confiscated by government!People have been ordered not to speak to reporters.
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #50 posted by afterburner on March 23, 2005 at 10:53:27 PT
Comments #48-49 posted by Hope 
Very insightful, Hope. I can just hear my wife, now deceased, saying such things, even using "blow," one of her favorite therapy words. I am especially impressed today with many of the comments. The prohibitionist backlash seems to be pushing the discourse to a higher and deeper level of human concerns.
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #49 posted by Hope on March 23, 2005 at 10:15:11 PT
Freedom...even to make the wrong choices,
is better than government force for people reaching an age where it is natural to want to make their own choices about what they want to do with their lives. Putting someone in a bottle like that and sealing it off is an excellent way to make some people blow the top off in violent ways.
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #48 posted by Hope on March 23, 2005 at 10:11:21 PT
Massacre at Red Lake and other schools
This thing is on my mind a lot. I keep wondering why this didn't happen fifty years ago. We had guns then. The thing that worries me more everyday is the way the kids are possibly being driven over the edge by what they see as being made clones with no sense of freedom or choice on their part. Used to, if a young man hated school and the system he could opt out. He could go to work and try to make it on his own with his own choices about what he was going to do with his life. Now they are forced into things they may not want. I think perhaps being forced into the curriculum by punative one size fits all laws has something to do with it. Of course, the kid in Red Lake had a very hard life and probably felt powerless as far as his own life was concerned and being disturbed he broke loose in ways that no law could touch him. He was lashing out with violence...the message that all too often is sent to the people by the government is "if you don't do it like we say...we will force you to with threat of violence or being locked away". I think access to freedom and liberty of personal choices might have made the kid less likely to blow...against the system he hated and blamed, in such a violent way.If he had been allowed out of a forced government curriculum, the tragedy might have been avoided. Free education to the masses is a wonderful thing. FORCED, and it is really forced by law... education to each and every one may have a lot to do with the problems we face now.Letting the kid choose a different route of his own volition might have prevented this. But no...that couldn't be allowed to happen.He wasn't an in school student at the time...but was forced fed the curriculum...even at home.It's something to consider.
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #47 posted by FoM on March 23, 2005 at 09:40:02 PT
I don't know what that means but I wish they were more specific. 
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #46 posted by afterburner on March 23, 2005 at 09:33:33 PT
Implied Support for Rational Cannabis Law Reform? 
"We want to eliminate regulations that are a nuisance, not a necessity." --Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin, North American Summit, Waco, Texas
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #45 posted by FoM on March 23, 2005 at 09:21:07 PT
I sure agree with you. What a world we live in now. I find myself retreating more and more from being associated with those leaders that have done this country in. At least my eyes are open. It's better then just believing that they care because they only care about money and money is their God.
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #44 posted by afterburner on March 23, 2005 at 09:16:02 PT
Lots of Bad Messages to Kids about Lots of Things
"I know why young people are confused because it confuses me."Someone here at CNews (or was it an LTE I read somewhere else) said that we send lots of bad messages to children about lots of things. You don't see balaclava-hooded LEO's breaking down the doors of private citizens to search for violent videogames. You don't see the personal property of chronic polluters being confiscated in civil court forfeitures. Why the extreme double-standard toward a God-given healing plant?
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #43 posted by FoM on March 23, 2005 at 08:11:35 PT
I agree with you. I don't understand the importance of issues sometimes. Adults should be able to decide if they want to use Cannabis or not. Adults have been at the mercy of what about the children issues. I'm sure you aren't getting the details in Canada about the Schiavo case but it really doesn't make sense to me. We have no problem putting someone to death in America. Another massacre in a school because of the obsession with guns in this country and I'll never understand loving guns. I know why young people are confused because it confuses me. 
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #42 posted by afterburner on March 23, 2005 at 08:02:30 PT
The Usual Suspects
Law Enforcement, fueled by lies and distortions. Politicians, paid for by corporate interests of the pharmaceutical and beverage lobbies. American Non-profit pressure groups with Canadian subsidiaries. Misinformed parents with no personal experience, believing all the media propaganda and fearing for their children.It is becoming a Canadian Civil War: rabid prohibitionists encouraging a zero-tolerance nightmare vs. the medical, spiritual and social consumers, producers, and merchants. As in the USA, the future of the Canadian economy hangs in the balance. The hemp economy will provide jobs, tax money, and visionary ideas to improve the nation. However, the forces of darkness want to keep the oil/pharmaceutical complex in control, poisoning the air, water, land and the health of the people. One culture offers hope and growth. The other offers fear and oppression. The Good Lord said to choose life, the blessing, not the curse. The will of the Canadian people remains to be seen. 
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #41 posted by FoM on March 22, 2005 at 19:44:07 PT

I've been reading what's happening in Canada on the CCC List. Little by little you are losing your rights like we have down here. I hope I'm wrong and that isn't happening. If it is who is behind it?
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #40 posted by afterburner on March 22, 2005 at 19:08:40 PT

'Almost vigilantism,' officers contend. Almost? 
Mar. 22, 2005. 06:46 AM 
Grow-op posse alarms police.
Politicians hunt drug door to door.
'Almost vigilantism,' officers contend. POWELL
CRIME REPORTER{Two Scarborough politicians are going door to door in their neighbourhood looking for marijuana grow houses to report to police.{MP Jim Karygiannis (Scarborough-Agincourt) and Toronto Councillor Mike Del Grande (Ward 39, Scarborough-Agincourt) say their crusade to weed out grow-ops in the sprawling suburb is already proving a success. "This past week we closed another two, three," said Del Grande.{While applauding the politicians' "enthusiasm and efforts," 42 Division Supt. Tony Warr says they should stick to lawmaking and leave the lawbreakers to police.{"I think (they've) got to let the police do the police work ... we don't want anybody getting hurt," he said yesterday. "It's almost vigilantism — there could be some serious repercussions." {In an interview, Karygiannis outlined how the politicians have turned traditional door-knocking into a campaign.{"We're not there to say, `Hey, you got a grow house?'" Karygiannis said. "When a guy opens the door, we'll say `Are there any concerns that you have?' If he doesn't look suspicious, then you go to the next door. If people don't open up, you ask the next door, `Hey you know, seen something strange? Smell anything?' This is how you get people involved."{Karygiannis says he recently went even further. He pulled up to a house flagged by neighbours as a probable grow-op, he says, and confronted two men standing outside the house. He suspected they were about to "tap into Hydro," to steal electricity needed for growing plants.{When one of the men "claimed to be fixing a garage door," Karygiannis parked his car in the driveway to prevent a van from leaving and called police. They arrested the men, said Karygiannis, crediting his "street smarts" for the detective work.{This past weekend, Karygiannis says, one of his constituents followed a car she'd seen at a neighbouring house suspected of being a grow operation.{"I got the licence plate and the car make," she said yesterday. Later, when another neighbour called to note the arrival of "a truck with no lights in the driveway," she called police — who came and left later with marijuana plants, she says.{"This is growing in front of our noses and we don't do anything and we can't stop it?" said the woman, who asked not to be named.{Karygiannis said he finds many people are prepared to take the initiative to help combat the spread of grow-ops. He said what he's doing is no different than "regular political canvassing."{A Toronto Police Service report, prepared as part of a request to the city for special funding for a team dedicated to dismantling grow-ops, concluded: "Present resources do not permit the proactive identification and investigation of suspected grow operations that are reported to police by the community. During 2004, the Toronto drug squad received several hundred Crime Stoppers tips but only a small percentage were acted upon."{Warr acknowledges the challenge facing police, particularly in east-end 42 Division where a majority of the city's detected grow-ops turn up. Of the 320 grow operations busted by Toronto police in 2004, 70 were in Scarborough. This year, police have raided and closed down more than 40 operations there.{But Warr cautions against people becoming "independent agents" and carrying out investigations with the intention of passing information to police. {When police apply for a search warrant and cite suspicious activity, the source must be revealed, he says. If the method used to obtain the information is illegal, the search warrant won't be issued.{"When are you trespassing and when are you not trespassing? What legal authority do you have? I don't think it's the route to go," he said, suggesting the politicians redirect their energies to "lobby for more resources so we can do more about it."{Karygiannis said his hands-on involvement to weed out grow-ops comes down to trying to build awareness and promote more community involvement.{"We're not trying to promote vigilantism. We're trying to promote `watch your neighbours.'" {He calls it "taking back the neighbourhood."{Part of that, Karygiannis says, is reaching out to some new Canadians in the area who come from cultures where minding your own business is a part of self-preservation. He has prepared a pamphlet with messages in seven languages about "what you can do to stop marijuana grow houses," and is holding a town hall meeting at St. Aidan Catholic Church March 31.{He and Del Grande belong to a marijuana task force, with a number of other Scarborough politicians, that hopes to step up education programs and encourage co-operation among agencies, such as public health departments and the Canadian Revenue Agency, to build cases against suspected grow-ops.}Shady reactionism is growing in Soviet Canuckistan! "Grow-ops," a problem created by prohibition on outdoor field growing and greenhouse cultivation.
The Star (subscription) - you know what to do 
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #39 posted by Hope on March 04, 2005 at 21:21:37 PT

comment 37
Apparently posts aren't being added to that forum.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #38 posted by Hope on March 04, 2005 at 20:17:11 PT

Both of them look really bad for reform. Really bad. Our votes need to be there....soon.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #37 posted by Hope on March 04, 2005 at 20:09:30 PT

This is definitely worth reading 
and keeping up with as more letters are added.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #36 posted by FoM on March 04, 2005 at 19:36:15 PT

News Article from Bloomberg
U.S. Removes Thailand From Drug-Producing List, Cites Canada March 4 (Bloomberg) -- The U.S. removed Thailand from its list of major drug-producing countries, while warning Canada its lax laws are enabling an increase in marijuana smuggling. ``The lack of significant judicial sanctions against marijuana producers is resulting in greater involvement in the burgeoning marijuana industry by organized criminal groups'' in Canada, President George W. Bush said in a statement accompanying the annual U.S. State Department report issued in Washington. Thailand has seen its cultivation of opium poppy fall ``well below'' levels set by Congress as a trigger for U.S. penalties, and no heroin-processing laboratories have been found in Thailand for several years, the report said. The U.S. issues the report each year, as required by an act of Congress, as a means of pressuring other countries to take steps to fight narcotics production and distribution as well as organized crime and money laundering. The criticism of Canada comes one day after four officers of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police were shot dead while raiding a suspected marijuana farm in western Alberta province. ``While the vast majority of illicit drugs entering the United States continue to come from South America and Mexico, we remain concerned about the substantial flow of illicit drugs from Canada,'' Bush said in today's report. Thailand is ``no longer a significant direct source of illicit narcotic or psychotropic drugs or other controlled substances significantly affecting the United States,'' Bush said. ``Nor is it a country through which such drugs or substances are transported.'' The report also praised the interim government of Haiti Prime Minister Gerard Latortue, saying it ``has taken substantive if limited counter-narcotics actions in the few months it has been in office.'' Although a change from the ``dismal performance last year under the Aristide regime,'' the U.S. remains ``deeply concerned about the ability of Haitian law enforcement to reorganize and restructure sufficiently to carry out sustained counter-narcotics efforts,'' Bush said in the report. 
Copyright: 2005 Bloomberg L.P.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #35 posted by John Tyler on March 04, 2005 at 19:32:55 PT

Another thought
From what I have read, this guy in question seemed to have had mental problems (paranoia being just one among them), he had an attraction for guns, (you would think the Bush people would like that), he stole a lot of stuff, and he grew a little weed on the side. The cops came around his place and somehow he shot them, which is a shame. He was not a big crime syndicate. He was a one man operation. Look how differently it gets played up by the prohibitionist though, "Four Mounties killed in raid on major drug grow op". The truth was "Four Mounties killed by deranged man in police investigation." It is such a shame to see these drug war lies. Now the prohibitionist politicians can say look at this tragedy, it's time to tighten the screws on this type of thing. Elect me. Give me more money and power and I will not let this happen again. Blah, Blah, Blah. It drags my head to see these people in action.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #34 posted by FoM on March 04, 2005 at 19:26:23 PT

Poll: CKNW AM980
Would you support tougher sentencing for grow ops? Current Results: 59% -- yes 41% -- no
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #33 posted by FoM on March 04, 2005 at 19:07:27 PT

580 CFRA Poll
  Some activists say yesterday's massacre of four RCMP officers is a tragic lesson in why marijuana should be totally legalized ... believing that this will take growing and distribution of pot out of the hands of criminals. 
 Current Results:I agree -- 23.3% I disagree -- 76.6% Total Votes: 1515
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #32 posted by FoM on March 04, 2005 at 18:59:27 PT

My Question
Excerpt from article: Around 9 a.m. on Thursday, the two officers were joined by two colleagues who planned to take inventory of the stolen property. ***How many plants did this grow op have? I haven't seen a number quoted in any article so far.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #31 posted by John Tyler on March 04, 2005 at 18:50:03 PT

US style Drug War brewing
Looks like the US has talked the Canadians into taking on a US style drug war. Increase the penalities, more prisons, more propaganda, more combat style operations, less freedom, just to keep people to using a plant. Has government gone crazy? How many more people have to die and how much money has to be wasted to see this is a failed policy?
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #30 posted by FoM on March 04, 2005 at 18:39:17 PT

Related News from
Mother of Slain Alberta Mountie Calls for Reform
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #29 posted by lombar on March 04, 2005 at 18:10:32 PT

There is a sound off here I am certain they edit/censor user comments. "This government does not support the legalization of marijuana. We've been quite clear about that." Anne McLellanSo you support more victims of the lost war on drugs. You could not pay me enough to vote for such bunglers.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #28 posted by FoM on March 04, 2005 at 17:48:44 PT

News Article from The Canadian Press
U.S. Officials Still Concerned about Increased Canadian Marijuana Shipments
Canadian Press March 4, 2005 
WASHINGTON (CP) - U.S. officials remain concerned about potential increases in Canadian-produced marijuana crossing the border in light of proposed cannabis legislation, said a State Department report released Friday. There's already been an increase in U.S. seizures of Canadian marijuana, much of it more potent and profitable than what's grown south of the border. To combat that problem and others, officials want to share more intelligence with Canada, expand joint training and operations and work with Canadian officials to increase penalties for drug criminals, said the annual narcotics control strategy report. The report noted the two countries already have an "excellent" law-enforcement relationship and said 2004 was a "productive " year for Canada in fighting the drug trade. The departments applauded Canadian efforts to curb cross-border smuggling of chemicals used to manufacture various drugs. It also noted Canada's plan to target organized crime behind marijuana-growing operations. But it said Canadian financial institutions remain vulnerable to money-laundering and terrorist financing from illegal drug sales. Canada needs to keep actively participating in international groups dedicated to fighting those crimes and continue efforts in the timely sharing of financial information, it said. Copyright: The Canadian Press 2005
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #27 posted by FoM on March 04, 2005 at 15:47:06 PT

News Article from The Canadian Press
RCMP Still Looking for Answers in Death of Four Alta Mounties
John Cotter, Canadian Press March 4, 2005 
MAYERTHORPE, Alta. (CP) - RCMP were struggling Friday to explain how one man known for years as a violent police-hater with a short fuse and an arsenal of weapons was able to gun down four young Mounties. James Roszko, 46, was notorious in the town and was feared by waitresses, high school students and community officials for his aggressive behaviour. RCMP regional Supt. Marty Cheliak had few answers for a grieving community wondering how a police search for stolen property at Roszko's farm could dissolve into a bloody massacre. "The investigative process is still underway and we can't really comment on that. We don't have the full circumstances to what occurred there," Cheliak said. "Our officers are well prepared to conduct policing activities in the province of Alberta." Cheliak would not confirm reports that Roszko had been shot and killed by a sniper or whether any of the slain officers fired their weapons. He would not say who actually ordered the Mounties to approach a quonset hut on the farm that housed a marijuana grow operation. Brock Myrol, 29, Lionide Nicholas Johnston, 32, Peter Christopher Schiemann, 25, and Anthony Fitzgerald Orion Gordon, 28, were found dead, along with Roszko, inside the building 130 kilometres northwest of Edmonton. Three of the four grew up in Alberta: Myrol was born in Outlook, Sask., but was raised in Red Deer, as was Gordon who was born in Edmonton. Johnston was from Lac la Biche. Schiemann was from Petrolia, Ont. "I hope he rots in hell for what he has done to our community. He ruined our town." Tracy Eisert, resident of Mayerthorpe, Alta. - "This loss is an unspeakable tragedy." Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty. - "I am deeply saddened by this senseless and devastating event." Nfld. Premier Danny Williams. - "Together, as citizens and as a society, we must continue to seek an end to the threat and injustice drug-related crimes bring to our neighbourhoods and communities across the country. That is precisely the goal these four officers were pursuing when they fell, and as Canadians we owe it to their memory to continue their work." British Columbia Premier Gordon Campbell. - "We've spoken to lots of people who think prohibition may have led to killing these police officers. Sometimes people have to accept the fact that there is evil out there. I mean this person owned guns but no one is suggesting we make those illegal." Marc Emery, leader of B.C.'s Marijuana Party. - The following is a statement read by Colleen Myrol, the mother of Const. Brock Myrol, in Red Deer, Alta., on Friday: The family of Brock Myrol are deeply saddened by the sudden and tragic loss of Brock. However, it is time that our government take a stand on evil. The man who murdered our son and brother was a person who was deeply disturbed and ill. It is our duty as Canadians to stop and rethink how we are raising our children. It is time to teach honour of our country. Brock knew that. It is time to care for our fellow man. Brock knew that. It is time to end the violence and stop the bullying on the play yard so our children won't commit suicide. Brock knew that. It is time as parents, whether a single or two-parent family, to raise our children with honour for our country, where a man's word is his bond. Brock knew that. It is time to take our liberal-minded attitude to task. Prime Minister Paul Martin, we depend on you and we expect you to change the laws and give the courts real power. Give the power back to the police. Take the power from the Supreme Court and give it back to the House of Commons. We are a good country. Brock knew that. He loved the RCMP and all it stood for. Our country is hurting. We have lost four dedicated citizens who were willing to do something about it. Children who are raised with hopes and dreams and goals and not in houses filled with drugs and violence will be better people. Brock knew that. Canadians are wonderful, caring, loving people. Brock knew that and dedicated his life to preserving that tradition. From the Myrol family to the families of the other constables that are dealing with their extreme and eternal loss, we are so sorry. Our hearts are with you. We share and we feel your pain. God bless you all. Respectfully, Keith, Colleen, Patricia, Kalhanie, Robert, Anjila, Blake, Rachel, Loren, and a host of aunts, uncles, cousins, grandparents, and very good friends. The four RCMP officers who were shot and killed in northwestern Alberta: Const. Peter Christopher Schiemann, 25: He was born in Petrolia, Ont., and joined the RCMP in Stony Plain, Alta. He graduated from training on Nov. 27, 2000 and was posted in Mayerthorpe, Alta., where he worked in general policing and highway patrol. Const. Lionide Nicholas Johnston, 32: He was born Lac La Biche, Alta., and that is where he joined the force. He graduated from training on April 17, 2001. In Mayerthorpe, he worked in both general and First Nations policing. Const. Anthony Fitzgerald Orion Gordon, 28: He was born in Edmonton, Alta., and joined the RCMP in Red Deer, Alta. He graduated from training Oct. 15, 2002, and was posted to Whitecourt, Alta., where he worked in general policing and highway patrol. Const. Brock Warren Myrol, 29: He was born in Outlook, Sask., and joined the RCMP in Red Deer, Alta. He graduated from training on Feb. 7, 2005, and was posted in Mayerthorpe where he worked in general policing. A chronology of key events in the history of the RCMP: -1873, Northwest Mounted Police established to police the vast area that later became Alberta and Saskatchewan. -1874, the 300-man force makes its legendary march west from Manitoba to the Rocky Mountain foothills. -1882, headquarters established in Regina. -1885, the Northwest Rebellion leads to violent clashes with natives and three Mounties are killed. -1896, gold is discovered in the Klondike. Mounties move north to police the gold rush. -1904, the force is re-named the Royal Northwest Mounted Police. -1911, four members of the Lost Patrol die of starvation and cold between Fort McPherson, N.W.T., and Dawson City, Yukon. -1919, the Mounties clash with crowds during the Winnipeg general strike, are tarred as strikebreakers. -1920, the force absorbs the Dominion Police to become the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. -1928, the RCMP begins provincial policing duties in Saskatchewan and assumes similar duties in five other provinces the next year. -1940-42, the RCMP patrol boat St. Roch becomes the first vessel to traverse the Northwest Passage west-to-east. -1950, the RCMP assumes provincial policing duties in British Columbia and Newfoundland. -1958, five Mounties drown when their patrol boat capsized in a squall on Lake Simcoe, in southern Ontario. -1962, three Mounties killed in a shootout with a deranged gunman in Kamloops, B.C. -1970s, a royal commission finds Mounties carried out questionable acts in pursuit of radical separatists. The RCMP security responsibility is eventually hived off to a new agency. -1990s, the RCMP expands its work in peacekeeping, with missions in Haiti, Namibia, Kosovo and East Timor. -2005, four Mounties shot to death in an ambush in northern Alberta. Copyright: The Canadian Press 2005
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #26 posted by Hope on March 04, 2005 at 15:24:29 PT

Wonder why no one has mentioned
Tougher Penalties for Murder?
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #25 posted by FoM on March 04, 2005 at 14:13:42 PT

Related Article from The Canadian Press
Judges Must Take 'Scourge' of Pot Grow ops Seriously: McLellanMarch 4, 2005OTTAWA (CP) - Marijuana production is a violent, organized scourge that judges should combat with serious sentences, says Federal Public Safety Minister Anne McLellan.All of society bears responsibility for recognizing the national boom in grow operations that are typically backed by organized crime, McLellan said Friday. Judges who don't penalize traffickers accordingly should be called to account, she said, one day after four Mounties were killed during a raid on an Alberta grow op that went horribly wrong."I would say that all of us - including the judiciary - need to understand what is at stake here. And I think yesterday was a horrible and tragic reminder."Judges who don't put major producers behind bars will have to offer reasons under proposed legislation now before Parliament that would decriminalize possession of small amounts of pot, McLellan said."Where there are aggravating circumstances and there is no jail time, you explain to the people who live in your community, that you serve, you explain to them why you did not believe jail time was appropriate in light of aggravating circumstances."McLellan denied that she believes judges have been too soft on pot growers - a common police complaint."I'm not saying that. As a society we all bear responsibility to take this particular crime very seriously."McLellan spoke at the Liberal policy convention where delegates will debate a resolution - from the Alberta wing of the party - to legalize pot. She dismissed any chance that the minority government will move in that direction."This government does not support the legalization of marijuana. We've been quite clear about that."Anne McLellan 
Copyright: 2005 Canadian Press
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #24 posted by FoM on March 04, 2005 at 12:33:26 PT

You're so right! Peaceful Hippies! They couldn't just leave it alone and let them live and let live. Now violence. Good comparison.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #23 posted by FoM on March 04, 2005 at 12:31:19 PT

How big was this grow op? Just wondering.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #22 posted by Sam Adams on March 04, 2005 at 12:30:55 PT

Cause and Effect
It's right here, look at this:Police have been warning for the past few years that the proliferation of marijuana grow-ops is leading to increased violence. Grow-ops are no longer the domain of casual dealers, they say, but of hardened gangsters and organized crime.According to a recent RCMP report, marijuana seizures are six times what they were a decade ago.The EXACT same thing happened here: in the 60s and 70s, MJ growing and selling was done by peaceful hippies. When the stakes became too high - long jail sentences, forfeiture & other ways of punishing the grower's family, etc, the hippies quit growing & violent criminals stepped right in.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #21 posted by FoM on March 04, 2005 at 12:11:37 PT

That's what I call an Agenda. Why doesn't she address gun control and mental illness too?PS: Guns aren't allowed in Canada are they? Maybe you can have high powered guns ( I'm asking because I don't know ) but I thought Canada was not like the U.S.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #20 posted by afterburner on March 04, 2005 at 11:58:16 PT

Follow Your Own Advice, Deputy PM McLellan
Canadian Deputy Prime Minister and Public Safety Minister Anne McLellan (formerly reluctant Health Minister, who recommended that medical cannabis patients NOT use their medicine, and former Justice Minister) is from Alberta where the tragedy of the 4 dead RCMP officers occurred. In a press conference just ended on CBC Newsworld she stated that no definite proposals regarding changes to marijuana [sic] laws should be offered in haste. Instead, she said that today should be a day of respect for the grieving families, only to turn around a few minutes later to again attack grow-ops and call for tougher penalties, as she and the RCMP Commissioner did yesterday.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #19 posted by Hope on March 04, 2005 at 11:28:14 PT

"prohibitionists just need a good story" 
Big Dawg, I have a feeling that this one is going to turn on them. I suspect this tragedy is the beginning of the end of prohibition in Canada. It certainly ought to be.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #18 posted by FoM on March 04, 2005 at 09:14:23 PT

Thank you. I agree with you. He was mentally ill.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #17 posted by BigDawg on March 04, 2005 at 09:11:35 PT

There is more than MJ to this
As mentioned a few posts previous... there was more to this than MJ.I have a friend who lives in the area. He said the guy was a locally known "nutcase" (his words) who loved guns... and was a theif with much stolen property. My friend said chances are the guy was being investigated, most likely, for the stolen property... and happened to have a grow. (my guess... stolen grow lights and half assed plants)This may not have been death caused by prohibition... but by a crazy fella who was into stolen property. The prohibitionists just need a good story right about now.. and the fact that he had plants... makes it a grow op bust. So, they run with it across the media til the fear generates enough support to crank out some new laws.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #16 posted by FoM on March 04, 2005 at 08:50:03 PT

Thanks Hope
I was told I can't post the whole article and I sure didn't think Mapinc. could either. Thanks for the link.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #15 posted by Hope on March 04, 2005 at 08:44:39 PT

The best piece I've read so far
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #14 posted by FoM on March 04, 2005 at 08:32:45 PT

He was Dangerous. He Had Lots of Guns

Suspect's troubles started with drugs, ended with jail time, shocked father says.Friday, March 4, 2005 - Page A6
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #13 posted by FoM on March 04, 2005 at 08:25:41 PT

Related Article from Reuters
Man Who Killed Canada Mounties Was 'Wicked Devil'  
   Friday, March 04, 2005 By David LjunggrenOTTAWA (Reuters) - The man suspected of shooting and killing four Royal Canadian Mounted Police officers, in the worst blood bath of its kind in Canada for 120 years, was "a wicked devil" who loved guns, relatives and media reports said on Friday.The four junior Mounties were guarding a farmhouse, which was believed being used to grow marijuana and store stolen property, when they were ambushed and killed on Thursday by a man with a rifle. The murders took place near the town of Mayerthorpe, about 90 miles (140 km) northwest of Edmonton.The deaths marked one of the bloodiest days in the history of the national police force and shocked a country where violent crime is rare.Canada has strict gun controls and statistics show it has about eight times fewer firearm homicides per 100,000 people than the United States.The suspect committed suicide by shooting himself, police said. Relatives and the media named him as Jim Roszko, 46."I hate what has happened. I feel terrible. He is not my son. He is a wicked devil," Roszko's father, Bill, told the Calgary Herald newspaper, saying his son had begun to experiment with drugs and guns at an early age.Neighbours told the newspaper that Roszko was a loner who would regularly confront people around his farm property and did not hesitate to fire warning shots. Others called him "a walking time bomb".The elder Roszko told CTV Television that his son had always had an angry streak and said he ended up in trouble "because of the drugs, you know, and the bad company with bad boys".The killings focused attention on Canada's booming illegal marijuana trade, which in the western province of British Columbia alone is worth an estimated C$5 billion ($4 billion) a year. Police say the trade is dominated by organized crime.Ottawa says casual pot users should not end up with a criminal record and last November unveiled draft legislation to decriminalize the possession of small amounts of marijuana -- an idea that angered U.S. law enforcement officials.The draft legislation would strengthen the penalties for those involved in large-scale marijuana growing operations. Public Security Minister Anne McLellan said on Thursday she would look at further toughening the bill, under which growers caught with more than 50 plants face up to 14 years in jail.The legislation would make possession of up to 15 grams of marijuana punishable by a fine of C$150 for adults and C$100 for minors. Users would not get a criminal record.The last time so many national police officers were shot and killed in a single action was 120 years ago during a rebellion in Western Canada by the mixed race Metis, made up of native Indians and white settlers.Figures from Statistics Canada show that from 1961 to 2003, only 26 Mounties were killed on duty. The total number of police who were killed in the same period -- including those in regional and municipal forces -- was 118."I am very concerned about people in society who are acting in a way which is almost unknown in Canada, where people react in a way that is so violent it's almost incomprehensible," said Commissioner Giuliano Zaccardelli, who is Canada's top Mountie. 
Copyright: 2005 Reuters
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #12 posted by The GCW on March 04, 2005 at 08:23:06 PT

"following orders" is no excuse 
(Those cops died for following Hitler type orders... They are in the wrong! We have every right to grow cannabis. Cops commiting crimes against humanity. Goons.)More Ward ("American dissident," cover story, Feb. 10.) I read an interview online conducted by the Boulder Weekly with Ward Churchill. I have read several of his books and consider them to be politically accurate and historically profound. We, the citizens of the USA, have benefited from 200-plus years of genocide, stolen land, stolen African labor, Manifest Destiny and Monroe Doctrine. In addition, a nonstop series of wars, invasions and occupations have created a relatively extravagant standard of living for the citizens of the USA. In this context, can any of us rationally claim to be "innocent victims"? We are now, and have been, consciously complicit with our ruling class in the system of U.S. imperialism, beginning with 160 acres of stolen land and continuing with volunteer soldiers and civilian contractors plundering Iraq. The Nuremburg trials made it quite clear that "following orders" is no excuse for crimes against humanity. I contend that neither is so-called ignorance. There is no dearth in explicit information on the history of the USA, beginning with the genocide of the indigenous people, the enslavement of the African workers and continuing today with more than one million Africans and Mexicans contained in the concentration camps known as the U.S. prison system. Dave Reardon/San Francisco in the Boulder Weekly letters section...
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #11 posted by ekim on March 04, 2005 at 08:15:45 PT

Business Week take a good look Canada
Source: Business Week (US)
URL: Newshawk: Doug McVay Votes: 0 Pubdate: Mon, 28 Feb 2005 Source: Business
Week (US) Column: Sound Money Copyright: 2005 The McGraw-Hill Companies,
Inc. Contact: bwreader Website: Details:
Author: Christopher Farrell Bookmark:
A NEW KIND OF DRUG WARThe Conventional One Has Been Highly Costly, With Little Return. Making
Narcotics Legal -- And Very Expensive -- Can Reduce Addiction And CrimeStarting with Richard Nixon, every U.S. President has declared war on drugs.
The FBI, CIA, DEA, military, and countless prosecutors have devoted enormous
resources to combating narcotics over the past several decades. According to
an estimate by Boston University economist Jeffrey A. Miron, federal, state,
and local governments have put some $33 billion in resources toward
prosecuting the war on drugs in recent years.How is the return on that investment? Abysmal. The demand for such illegal
drugs as marijuana, cocaine, and heroin remains strong. Drug lords and their
cartels terrorize nations and local communities. Crime and corruption
derived from the illegal drug trade flourish. U.S. prisons are crowded with
drug-law offenders -- more than 54% of federal prisoners sentenced in 2004
were sent away for breaking drug laws. snipped.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #10 posted by Hope on March 04, 2005 at 08:11:10 PT

Who is prohibition "protecting"?
From what I can glean about this tragedy, part of this investigation was about stolen property. Obviously, we aren't going to hear much about that. What we are going to hear about is dangerous grow-ops. Thievery is wrong and should be a law enforcement priority. The rest of the disaster can be laid at the feet of prohibition. The worse prohibition gets the more dangerous it becomes. History proves this. Prohibitionist's arrogance makes them blind and stupid. They wantonly ignore the facts. Anybody who thinks that ratcheting up prohibition will solve the problem is deluding the detriment of us all.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #9 posted by FoM on March 04, 2005 at 07:45:29 PT

Related Article from The Canadian Press
Legalize Pot, Says LiberalBy CPFri, March 4, 2005 Note: Mounties may have lived.  
OTTAWA -- Four RCMP officers cut down while investigating a massive marijuana grow operation might not have died if Canada had legalized pot, a former Alberta Liberal leader said yesterday. Nick Taylor, a former senator and onetime leader of the Liberals in the province where the tragedy occurred, said the incident proves once again that prohibition, whether for alcohol, tobacco or marijuana, doesn't work. "The way we've done it now is marijuana has become the exclusive prerogative of the criminal element because there's such fantastic profit in it," Taylor said in an interview. "I'm not saying that the four men would be alive if we had legalized marijuana, but I suspect they might be." RESOLUTION Taylor, in Ottawa for the national Liberal convention, said he's "hoping one of the good things that will come out of" the tragedy is that it will prompt Liberal delegates to support a resolution, proposed by the Alberta wing of the federal party, to legalize pot. The resolution, which would see pot legalized and taxed, is to be debated tomorrow. It asserts that "legalizing marijuana would be a serious blow to drug dealers and organized crime financially." Public Safety Minister Anne McLellan didn't wait for the debate to rule out legalization. "We are not in the business of legalizing marijuana. We are in the business of putting in place a new penalty regime for small amounts of marijuana," she said. McLellan said she and Justice Minister Irwin Cotler will review proposed legislation to decriminalize marijuana possession to determine if it is tough enough on pot growers. The legislation, reintroduced in November, would make possession of up to 15 grams of marijuana punishable by a fine of $150 for adults and $100 for minors. It also proposes growers caught with more than three plants face up to five years in jail, or 18 months plus a $25,000 fine. Anyone with more than 25 plants could face 10 years in jail and growers of more than 50 plants would face a maximum sentence of 14 years. McLellan dodged the question of whether minimum sentences are needed to deter growers, but conceded police need more help to tackle the "scourge" of grow ops. Calling it an "unprecedented and unspeakable" loss, RCMP Commissioner Giuliano Zaccardelli said yesterday's massacre must spark public debate on Canada's drug strategy.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #8 posted by fearfull on March 04, 2005 at 07:07:03 PT

But seriously
Just got done reading the Canadian press story. dosen't look like it will take too long for this bust forth into a full blown feeding frensy. Cannabists in Canada really need to make the point loud and clear, these men were killed by prohibition! ...if not by Uncle Sam....
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #7 posted by lombar on March 04, 2005 at 07:05:03 PT

I couldn't help thinking...
Did the shooter register his gun? Ms. McLellan's government wasted over a $1 billion forcing (honest) gun owners to pay money to register their firearms (to reduce gun crimes???). Now she wants to spend billions more on a never-ending game of whack-a-mole that is unwinnable???Those police officers were victims of government incompetence. Heel dragging and unwillingness to change. Political BS preventing Canada (and the world) from adopting more enlightened drug policies. Building a police state just to prevent people from having some pleasure. It is truly shameful and depressing. How many more victims?

[ Post Comment ]


Comment #6 posted by afterburner on March 04, 2005 at 06:53:01 PT

Three Stories from The Star (Toronto): 
Is There a Connection between them?{Four Mounties slain during raid  
 Mar. 4, 2005. 06:46 AM  
 {ROCHFORT BRIDGE, Alta. - His voice tight with grim self-control, Alberta's commanding RCMP officer groped for a way yesterday to describe a catastrophic drug raid that left four young officers, one of them a 29-year-old rookie, lying dead in a metal shed. [Full Story] 
 › Rookie officer gunned down (Mar. 4) › Grow-ops 'a danger' (Mar. 4) --------------------------------------------------------------------------------{PM, Bush set for make-up summit
Mar. 4, 2005. 06:11 AM{OTTAWA — Prime Minister Paul Martin faces a bigger job of fence mending with George Bush than originally thought, with reports indicating the U.S. president was personally offended at the handling of the missile defence decision. Sean Gordon reports.  [Full Story]--------------------------------------------------------------------------------{U.S. Senate nixes beef imports
Mar. 4, 2005. 07:36 AM{WASHINGTON - The U.S. Senate, in a stark sign of the toxic state of Canada-U.S. trade relations, has voted to overturn a Bush administration decision and keep the border closed to a wide range of Canadian beef and beef products. Tim Harper reports.  [Full Story]}Is it just possible that these brave rookies were deliberately sacrificed as pawns while the man, who relatives and police sources identified as Jim Roszko, (perhaps hopped up on PCP and methamphetamine) fought back in a paranoid rage? The timing of this tragedy is suspicious, coming as it does on the "eve" of a tri-lateral NAFTA-nations summit (March 23) with bully Bush (USA), PM Paul Martin (Canada), and President Vicente Fox (Mexico) in *Waco*, Texas! Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin refused to sign on to Bush's missile shield white elephant. Almost immediately, a US federal judge reclosed the border to Canadian beef and the US Senate endorses the action. Are they all in Bush's back pocket? Very suspicious indeed. The US-led global cannabis prohibition has taken 5 more victims. 5 more families are shattered. When will the madness of failed prohibition end? My heart goes out to all the victims and especially to their families.
The Star (subscription) - you know what to do
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #5 posted by fearfull on March 04, 2005 at 06:49:02 PT

I don't mean to be a conspiracy nut but...
Some one else was talking recently about The Maine, Pearl Harbor, and 911. The US Feds could have.... Naa! Couldn't be.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #4 posted by goneposthole on March 04, 2005 at 05:40:18 PT

There will never be...
a good drug war.There will never be... a bad drug peace. PeaceWhat do the communists want? The pastor of my church asked that question in 1966. "It's a five-letter word," he said. Still, no one could answer the question. "Peace," he said.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #3 posted by Hope on March 04, 2005 at 05:36:02 PT

Prohibition kills
Kaptinemo's right.If the LeDain Commission's recommendations had been followed, might these officers be alive and well today?Ann McLellan's wrong. She wants to make the policy stronger that bred this disaster in the first place.GCW's right. What in the world makes the prohibitionist's delude themselves about the "good" of prohibition?"Public Safety Minister Anne McLellan said she will consider tougher penalties for grow operations in the proposed marijuana decriminalization bill." (from article by Canandian Press)Prohibitionists...You don't want anyone to use cannabis. You say they shouldn't. You say that deaths like this are caused by people using cannabis. Take the blinders off. You can't change people finding a substance, a plant, enjoyable. It's the fact that you made it a crime that these people, like the Bowers, and countless others have been lost.
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #2 posted by The GCW on March 04, 2005 at 04:58:08 PT

The obvious and the have not's...
The extent that people miss the obvious and the multitudes of that group growing is revealing.We here see the obvious and it is making Us dizzy observing them not get what hits them in the chin.As it is said; and it has been said, the deluding influence will be given to evil types and it is going to be real and We are observing it. The deluding influence is one of the things disobedient Christians will receive and part of its blessing is that it will be visible to Us.2 Thes. 2:11 etc. in the area subtitled: Man of Lawlessness.
  “For this reason God will send upon them a deluding influence so that they will believe what is false, 
  12in order that they all may be judged who did not believe the truth, but took pleasure in wickedness. By the way,
2 Thes. 2:3 “Let no one in any way deceive you, for it will not come unless the apostasy comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction,”APOSTASY, comes first????
Well it just so happens the next book, 1 Timothy in 4:1-5, is subtitled APOSTASY and helps define the future that must come first, which seems to have arrived.1 Timothy 4
  1But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons, 
  2by means of the hypocrisy of liars seared in their own conscience as with a branding iron, 
  3men who forbid marriage and advocate abstaining from foods which God has created to be gratefully shared in by those who believe and know the truth. 
  4For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with gratitude; 
  5for it is sanctified by means of the word of God and prayer. It is important to know how We stand on this issue with Christ God Our Father. 
God says all the seed bearing plants are FOOD on the 1st page of the Bible.THCUIf You are going to trip, You may trip at the beginning. If You are not going to trip, do not trip at the beginning.

[ Post Comment ]


Comment #1 posted by kaptinemo on March 04, 2005 at 04:42:33 PT:

Time for some pointed questions to be asked
I don't know much more about the situation than anyone else, other than what I can glean from the CBC and CTV Websites, so I'll withhold any comments concerning specifics of what happened there. A terrible tragedy, for the RCMP and for Canada in general. For what it's worth, my condolences to the families of those slain.But it should not be allowed to slip under the public’s radar THAT IT NEVER HAD TO HAPPEN AT ALL.Given the fact that the LeDain Commission - and just about every other commission on both sides of the border before and since then - had made recommendations for legalization, some questions are in order. Chiefest of which, given the situation, is this: Would those men be alive if Canada had followed the recommendation of the Ledain Commission so long ago?The answer is obvious, but for those who haven't had their coffee yet, the answer is a resounding YES!. But that would necessarily have required the political stones to do something few Canuck pols have ever done, with exceptions like Pierre Trudeau; I maintain that if Canada had stood up to the US and calmly stated that they were going to proceed with the LeDain Commission's suggestions, so long ago, this tragedy would have been averted. Instead, the RCMP will have 4 more graves to sound their version of "Taps" over.Make no mistake: those men died, not for the RCMP, not for Canada, but for the US. For it is the US that is the single greatest force for maintaining the failed policy of prohibition...and just like alcohol Prohibition before it, drug prohibition is the single greatest risk to the lives of LEOs everywhere. It is diplomatic and other pressures exerted by the US - in the face of mounting evidence of the policy's glaringly evident failure - to maintain drug prohibition that fuels the rest of the world's efforts, even leaning on more enlightened nations with some success.So, when the newsies begin their spin, I hope that enough Cannabians have the presence of mind to point out this fact and throw the lies back in the face of those who would make ghastly political capital of the bodies of those recently lost.

[ Post Comment ]

  Post Comment