By Castulo Zane

Is possession and cultivation of marijuana a big deal in BC? It is easy to find out exactly what happens if you get caught just by looking on the web. Look at the actual court cases below and see what you find out.

Provincial Courthouse, North Van. June, 2011. Offense: Possession of Marijuana. The defense lawyer had to have the court decide if criminal charges were in the public interest. The court decided to proceed with an alternative measures program involving a course. On completion of the course the charges were dropped. There was no criminal record as a result.

Provincial Court, Nanaimo. Spring 2011. Offense: Possession for the Purposes of Trafficking and Cultivation of Marijuana. The police caught the grower and seized $2000 dollars, alleging it was proceeds of crime. The defense lawyer successfully argued the opposite and convinced the court to return the funds to the defendant.

Nanaimo Provincial Court. Early 2011. Offense: Possession of more than three kilos of pot and cultivation of pot. The police argued that the grower had about 200 plants, which is over 3 kilograms. The grower's lawyer got the Crown to change the charge to possession of less than 3 kilograms. The court imposed a 9 month conditional sentence and rejected a Crown request prohibit the grower from possessing hydroponic equipment.

Vancouver Court. Fall 2010. Offense: Production of Marijuana; Possession of Marijuana. The issue was whether the search warrant used by police was valid and legal. This was a 250 plant grow show. The Crown tried to argue that the grower knew about and was in control of the grow op. The defense lawyer convinced them to drop the charges. The grower didn't get a record.

Abbottsford Provincial Court. September, 2010. Charge: Production and possession of pot. The client was in possession of more than 1000 plants. The lawyer negotiated a plea that the client was only responsible for 63 clones. That's a guilty plea to possession of less than three kilos. The sentence was three month's conditional, and no jail time.

Supreme Court, Williams Lake. May, 2010. Charge: Possession and production purpose of trafficking marijuana. Offence: The grower was caught by police with a 5000 plant plus grow operation. The grower's lawyer made the case that the police breached the grower's rights when they got him to confess. The defense lawyer went to court and argued his way to a plea bargain. Crown had wanted a sentence of two years, but it was dropped to a 12 month conditional sentence without house arrest, no electronic monitoring and no probation.

This history of charges and the results is instructive. The courts are very lenient. Growers got their wrists slapped. Some escaped with no criminal record. It's obvious that British Columbia is soft on marijuana production and possession.

About the Author:

blog comments powered by Disqus