[THS] Marc Emery to be extradited to US
The Harder Stuff in news and commentary
ths at psalience.org
Tue May 11 17:00:42 CEST 2010
Pubdate: Tue, 11 May 2010
Source: Edmonton Journal (CN AB)
Copyright: 2010 The Edmonton Journal
Author: Laura Baziuk, Canwest News Service
POT 'PRINCE' TO BE EXTRADITED
Marc Emery Faces Drug, Money-Laundering Charges in U.S.
Canada's self-proclaimed Prince of Pot was ordered extradited Monday
to face drug and money-laundering charges in the United States.
Marijuana activist Marc Emery turned himself in to police custody
Monday morning and was informed that Justice Minister Robert Nicholson
has ordered his extradition.
The British Columbia man had been out on bail since the fall, while
facing a five-year prison sentence after pleading guilty to conspiracy
to manufacture marijuana in the U.S.
The charges against Emery and two of his associates at his Culture
Cannabis store in Vancouver were filed after they were caught selling
marijuana seeds across the border.
"I think there's a great deal of shock and disappointment," said
Emery's lawyer, Kirk Tousaw. "It's clear to me that this is a deeply
unpopular move by the Conservative government."
Tousaw said Emery, 51, will likely be transferred across the border
sometime this week, but there is a chance that the activist might
serve his sentence in Canada.
Based on a treaty Canada has with the U.S. over the transfer of
prisoners, Tousaw said his client must be convicted in the U.S. and
that country must then support the transfer.
"We have been advised that the U.S. will support the treaty transfer,"
Tousaw said. The decision will then go to Public Safety Minister Vic
Toews, but Tousaw said it's "really impossible" to say when Emery
could return to Canada.
Emery protested the decision outside B.C. Supreme Court
"There is nothing to be gained by this government for extraditing me,"
said Emery as he stood with his wife, Jodie, in front of supporters.
Canadians will be "very, very angry" if he is sent to the U.S., Emery
added, because it will mean the minister will have turned a "tin ear"
to the country's sovereignty.
Pubdate: Tue, 11 May 2010
Source: Edmonton Sun (CN AB)
Copyright: 2010 Canoe Limited Partnership.
Contact: mailbag at edmsun.com
Author: Mindelle Jacobs
THE IRONY OF THE PRINCE OF POT
Supporters of Marc Emery may be outraged that the so-called Prince of
Pot faces imminent extradition to the U.S., but you've got to wonder
if Emery isn't secretly pleased.
The Vancouver-based pro-marijuana activist deliberately poked Uncle
Sam in the eye by selling marijuana seeds over the Internet -
practically daring the U.S. authorities to go after him.
They did and Emery could be behind bars in the U.S. within days, now
that Justice Minister Rob Nicholson has given the green light for his
"I'm proud of what I've done and I have no regrets," Emery told
reporters Monday before surrendering to sheriffs in Vancouver.
This doesn't sound like a man who's particularly unhappy about the way
things turned out. Emery's been yearning to be a martyr for the cause
for years and it looks like he'll finally get his wish.
Compared to Americans nabbed in drug cases, he's pretty lucky. The
Prince of Pot faces a mere five years in jail in exchange for pleading
guilty. Americans involved in such drug-related endeavours can spend
decades in jail.
The great irony is that Canadian authorities have known about Emery's
seed-selling business for a long time and have, for the most part,
Emery has sent marijuana seeds to MPs, paid hundreds of thousands of
dollars in taxes and has generally been as in-your-face as possible
about pressing for the legalization of pot.
"I wish I could have done more to piss the U.S. government off," he
said in 2008.
Even though Emery brought this on his own head, it's worth noting that
Nicholson is shipping the Prince of Pot off to the U.S. for behaviour
that Canada didn't seem bothered about.
Health Canada even recommended that medical pot patients contact Emery
for a source of supply, says Eugene Oscapella, of the Canadian
Foundation for Drug Policy.
"It's hardly a surprise with this government," Oscapella says of
Emery's pending extradition. "Am I shocked? No. Am I appalled? Yes."
Canada won't be paying the bill to incarcerate Emery, mind you, unless
he's eventually transferred back to a Canadian jail.
The bad news is Canadian taxpayers will be paying a lot more to
incarcerate people if the Conservatives' latest attempt to bring in
mandatory sentences for various drug crimes passes.
People growing as few as six pot plants, for instance, face at least
six months in jail - or a minimum of nine months in jail if they're
"Are you going to get the major traffickers? No," says Oscapella, who
teaches a criminology course on drug policy at the University of Ottawa.
Every year, he surveys his students about drug use and 85% of the
students in his last class reported having used illegal drugs.
"So our government has decided that it wants to continue to
criminalize 85% of the population of university students I teach,"
"These are the privileged in society so they're not going to be the
kids picked up in the drug sweeps if they're on campus," he adds.
"But if they're in the wrong place at the wrong time or their skin's
the wrong colour, they're going to get picked up and we're going to
add billions to the cost of incarceration."
Watch more of your taxes go to the unwinnable war on drugs while
traffickers get wealthier.
Meanwhile, California, America's most populous state, is poised for a
fall vote on whether to legalize the adult use and cultivation of pot.
That should create quite a buzz.
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