Defendant Goes Online

Defendant Goes Online
Posted by FoM on December 27, 2001 at 08:47:48 PT
By Chris Lambie, The Daily News 
Source: Daily News
A Middle Sackville man charged with growing and selling marijuana has turned to the Internet to smoke out some public support. Michael Patriquen, 48, was arrested Feb. 28, 2000, after police seized several hundred plants, seedlings and homegrown pot in several communities. On Nov. 24, Patriquen set up a Web site — — to criticize the cops who arrested him and the laws they are enforcing. “Why is the federal government of Canada attempting the destruction of the Patriquen family?” says the site.
“Is it because of the war on cannabis or is it to cover up a massive RCMP investigation gone wrong? Did a scapegoat have to be found and Michael Patriquen was chosen? We feel the material contained within these pages is quite clear. You be the judge.”Patriquen’s Web site contains links to background on his case and ways to speak out about it. But they don’t work yet.“Site will be opened soon,” the site says. “Stay tuned to national media for release date.”Patriquen’s marijuana-trafficking trial starts Jan. 16 in Halifax, and he’ll be back in court March 20 to face charges of conspiring to produce the drug.“In June 2000, a three-year RCMP investigation came to a close,” Patriquen said in an e-mail to The Daily News. “It involved most Canadian provinces and a number of foreign countries. It was a complete and utter failure, doomed from day one because the police started out on a false premise that they ultimately couldn’t prove — there was nothing to prove.”Patriquen said Mounties spent millions of dollars on the investigation.“Big charges had to be laid,” he said. “I had been under a microscope for years as suspect.”He said Mounties found only “circumstantial evidence,” including lunches Patriquen had with pot dealers.Patriquen is a former Marijuana Party candidate.“Activists are known to lunch with those from the cannabis community,” he said. “Unfortunately many people are tried and convicted on circumstantial evidence in cannabis conspiracy cases.”Patriquen said he shudders at the prospect of a long prison sentence, should he be found guilty.“The RCMP and the Federal Department of Justice wish to lock me up forever, throw my wife and kids on the street and steal the family home,” he said. “All to cover their asses.”Justice Department spokesman Glenn Chamberlain said he’s never heard of someone taking their criminal case to the Internet.“To our way of thinking, the appropriate place to resolve any legal question is before the courts,” Chamberlain said.But Dalhousie Law School professor Rollie Thompson said the phenomenon has been seen before.“In family law, there’s lots of Web sites saying terrible things about about family law judges,” Thompson said. Patriquen probably doesn’t risk getting charged with contempt of court for setting up the site, because the offence of scandalizing the court was struck down by the Ontario Court of Appeal in 1987.“People are given a fair degree of leeway in their discussion of the court system,” Thompson said.“And the fact that you’ve got a Web site that discusses your own prosecution would ordinarily certainly not amount to contempt.”Note: Former Marijuana party candidate works on Web site to refute charges.Source: Daily News, The (CN NS)Author: Chris Lambie, The Daily News Published: Thursday, December 27, 2001Copyright: 2001 The Daily NewsContact: letterstoeditor hfxnews.southam.caWebsite: Articles & Web Sites:Railroadedhttp://www.railroaded.infoFTE's Canadian Links They're High On Pot Plan Articles - Canada 
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Comment #1 posted by greenfox on December 27, 2001 at 09:33:14 PT
This sort of nonsense is what it's all about- it's the old "Don't kill someone or we'll kill you", but in this case it's "Don't grow a plant or we'll lock you away and steel your house & kids". I'm sorry but that's too f**ked up for me.-gf
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