Pubdate: Thu, 23 Feb 2017
Source: Brant News (CN ON)
Copyright: 2017 Metroland
Author: Colleen Toms


Cannabis activist Marc Emery opens marijuana dispensary in city,
police shut it down days later

While his wife Jodie Emery was at Parliament Hill in Ottawa lobbying
in defence of marijuana dispensaries, Canada's best-known pot activist
Marc Emery - also known as the Prince of Pot - was in Brantford
protesting the shutdown of Cannabis Culture on Colborne Street West by
Brantford police.

The Brantford Police Service street crime unit arrested a 35-year-old
Stoney Creek man, who witnesses said was the owner of the store, at
about 8:30 p.m. on Tuesday and charged him with possession for the
purpose of trafficking.

He was held for a bail hearing.

Police were following up on an investigation that determined the
business was selling marijuana to people who did not have a medical
marijuana licence.

Cannabis Culture sells pot to anybody 19 years of age and over, Emery

"No judge is going listen to this stuff anymore," said Emery, the
founder of Cannabis Culture, PotTV, the B.C. Marijuana Party and Emery

"All across Canada judges are going to wait for legalization, lawyers
are going to put it off, they're all going to challenge the
constitutionality of cannabis laws, which are no longer justifiable
and no longer defensible in court.

"I don't believe the Supreme Court would rule that these are illegal
activities anymore."

On Wednesday morning, about four police cruisers and several officers
were at the store in a West Brant plaza that was cordoned off with
police tape. Investigators were waiting for a warrant to examine the

Protesters waved placards claiming "Marijuana Saves Lives" as several
motorists honked their horns in support while passing.

Emery said Cannabis Culture opened in Brantford on Sunday and "did
$5,000 worth of business" that day.

"As soon as those decals went up people started coming by, word got
out," he said.

Emery's Cannabis Culture marijuana dispensary on Church Street in
Toronto draws about 12,000 people every week, he claimed.

"That shows you the incredible demand that exists in Canada, that
people are willing to pay prohibition prices and yet we're trying to
establish a model whereby the price is going to come down, it's going
to be seen as legal, normalized, accessible" Emery said.

"Considering we have had 1,000 people die in this country from an
opioid crisis in the last year and no one has ever died from cannabis,
this is an absurd exercise."

According to Toronto Cannabis Culture employee Mathew Ferguson,
officers arrested another three employees of the Brantford dispensary
on Wednesday morning.

"They went inside and dragged everybody out that was inside," he said.
"They put them all in handcuffs and refused to tell us what they were
being charged with. It was very scary to see my friends being taken

About a dozen Cannabis Culture marijuana dispensaries are opening in
areas across Canada. Seven will open in Toronto next week, and one
opened in Ottawa on Wednesday.

Emery has been arrested 29 times and has been in 35 different prisons
and jails on marijuana-related charges.

"Sooner or later we're going to get to one of the higher courts … but
in the meantime small communities like Peterborough and Brantford and
larger communities like Montreal are going to have to suffer a lack of
access," he said.

"Everything about the way the government is treating us, from the
local level with these police to the federal level, is insulting. We
deserve an apology. There's no public clamouring to close this place,
this place has 100 times more people who want it."

The Brantford Police Service is asking anyone with information to
contact the street crime unit at 519-756-0113, ext. 2286, or Brantford
Crime Stoppers at 519-750-8477.
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