Pubdate: Tue, 17 Jul 2001
Source: Edmonton Sun (CN AB)
Copyright: 2001, Canoe Limited Partnership.
Author: Dan Palmer


A local group which wants to provide medicinal marijuana illegally will 
start work this week - because it's convinced its dope is more potent than 
whatever Ottawa's offering, says a board member.

"Their pot is going to be such a low grade, people will have to go to 
(us)," said Michael Cust, 21, a board member of the Edmonton Compassion 

The network plans to sell marijuana from lower mainland B.C. to 
Edmontonians who need a safe and reliable supply to relieve the pain or 
symptoms of a medical condition, he said. The dope will be sold at about 
$8.50 a gram, cheaper than the $15-a-gram street price, Cust said.

The CEO and president of the Saskatoon-based Prairie Plant Systems, 
selected by Health Canada to grow marijuana for medicinal purposes, 
questions how anyone can know for sure how potent their pot is before it's 
tested. "Which lab is measuring their stuff?" said Brent Zettc, 39.

Munir Ahmad, 23, director and co-founder of the network, said he knows by 
reputation the THC - the active substance in marijuana - will be high in 
the B.C. bud.

"That's by word of mouth," he said, pointing out that most suppliers want 
to provide a high-quality product.

The 5-6% THC content that Health Canada wants in its first dope crop is too 
low, since users will have to smoke more joints than necessary to see the 
benefits, he said.

Zettc said his group won't know how much THC is in the crop until it's 
harvested and tested this fall.

Ahmad said he will begin taking applications this week from people who want 
the marijuana.

"If I have to go (to jail), I will," he said. "But I think the judge will 
be sympathetic."

Ahmad cited the recent courtroom victory of medical pot crusader Grant 
Krieger. Last month, a Calgary court ruled Krieger was justified in 
breaking the law by selling grass to chronically ill people.

City police spokesman Dean Parthenis said cops won't treat the local 
compassion club any different from anyone else they catch selling marijuana.

"If they're found buying or selling, they're going to be charged," he said.

Alberta Solicitor General Heather Forsyth said the province will have no 
choice but to enforce the Criminal Code.
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