Pubdate: Wed, 22 Aug 2001
Source: Regina Leader-Post (CN SN)
Copyright: 2001 The LeaderPost Ltd.
Author: Kevin O'connor of The Leader-Post
Bookmark: (Cannabis - Canada)


Fiddling sensation Ashley MacIsaac may have a reputation for outrageous 
antics, but he was on his best behaviour last month when he was busted near 
Regina for possession of pot.

"He was extremely polite and co-operative with the police officers," 
MacIsaac's lawyer Jayme Day said in Regina Provincial Court Tuesday.

Day entered a guilty plea on MacIsaac's behalf on one count of possession 
of marijuana.

The Juno-award-winning musician was charged July 27 after being stopped by 
the highway traffic patrol while on his way to a concert in Saskatoon.

Prosecutor Paul Malone, representing the federal Crown, said RCMP pulled 
over a speeding car on Highway 11 near Aylesbury.

When the driver rolled down the window, there was "a strong smell of 
cannabis," Malone said.

Inside the car, police found a baggy with eight grams of marijuana. After a 
search, a hash pipe and another four grams of marijuana were located.

MacIsaac admitted the drugs were his and was charged with possession of 
marijuana under the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act.

Although MacIsaac, 26, wasn't present for Tuesday's proceedings, the 
mention of his name sent a ripple of excitement through the courtroom.

"Is that the Ashley MacIsaac?" asked Provincial Court Judge Linton Smith.

"The same," replied Day.

The Crown prosecuted the case as a less-serious summary offence, which 
carries a maximum penalty of $2,000 and a year in jail.

However, after accepting the guilty plea Smith gave MacIsaac no fine and an 
absolute discharge.

"The only condition I'd like to attach is if you could get my wife an 
autograph," Smith told Day.

He quickly added he was joking.

With a discharge, MacIsaac won't have a criminal record and will be able to 
cross the U.S. border.

MacIsaac, who is touring Canada this summer, wasn't available for comment, 
although Day said he's pleased the case is concluded. "He was quite happy 
with the result," she said.

The Saskatchewan bust is the latest in a series of controversies for a 
performer who has both delighted and scandalized audiences in recent years.

In past media interviews, the outspoken MacIsaac has made regular 
references to his use of such drugs as crack cocaine, LSD and marijuana.

Before performing in Red Deer last month, he told a reporter he enjoys pot 
and uses it to recover from the physical toll taken by fiddling several 
hours at a stretch.

MacIsaac performed at a Regina nightclub on July 26 and at a university pub 
in Saskatoon the following evening.

Aylesbury is about 100 kilometres northwest of Regina.
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