HTTP/1.0 200 OK Content-Type: text/html RCMP Put Spin On Grow Op Busts
Pubdate: Wed, 06 Dec 2006
Source: Kelowna Capital News (CN BC)
Copyright: 2006, West Partners Publishing Ltd.
Bookmark: (Cannabis - Canada)


If the first casualty of war is truth, then what are you supposed to 
believe about the war on drugs? The Kelowna RCMP would have you 
believe their version.

Drug squad head Sgt. Tim Shields of the Kelowna RCMP spent a 
considerable part of a media briefing yesterday trying to convince 
reporters of a stand the force has taken often in the past: The 
majority of marijuana grow operations are connected to organized 
crime and that the dope they grow is smuggled into the U.S. and comes 
back as cocaine.

During Green Team raids on 23 large grow houses, Shields said police 
seized 10,500 plants, enough by their calculations to provide every 
teenaged kid in the Central Okanagan school district with a joint a 
day for 429 days.

But what about the obvious disparity? If the pot is all going south 
for cocaine, how is it that the same dope can also supply our kids 
for over a year?

The sergeant painted grow ops as hazardous health risks, staffed by 
desperate criminals with guns who may also have their young children 
living in a house filled with the exposed wires and overloaded circuits.

Yet police seized no guns and not one child was found inside any of 
the 23 grow houses.

When pressed for specifics, RCMP will often cite confidentiality rules.

Now we're sure that most of what the RCMP tell us is true, at least 
in a composite way, where things they've found at grow houses are put 
together to paint a worst-case scenario picture.

No one wants a gang-related grow op in their neighbourhood.

Trouble is they don't spend much time talking about the other half of 
the picture: The mom-and-pop grow ops in basements and attics where 
the product is either for medical use or the personal use the 
majority of Canadians say they would tolerate.

A hidden agenda?

You decide.
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