Friday, January 06, 2006

Canadian government caves to US pressure - Emery extradition will proceed

I'm looking at a couple of days off and after nine hours of sleep, the old brain is sort of working again, so posting is likely to pick up.

There's fresh developments in Marc Emery's case. The brilliant procedural move in bringing private criminal charges against Emery by a Canadian citizen has been thwarted by a Vancouver prosecutor who recently took over the case. The charges have been stayed, on the grounds that it is not in the public interest to charge him. This clears the way for Marc's extradition hearing to proceed in February.

As Marc points out, it's interesting logic. If it doesn't serve the interests of Canada to pursue the "crime" then why does it serve their interest to allow him to be extradited on the same charges except to kowtow to the US government? Are they a sovereign nation or a US terrority?

And it seems to me that Vancouver was a rather peaceful place and cannabis was not a huge problem until the DEA opened an office there a couple of years ago. Sudddenly there's crimes and fires and all sorts of trouble. As tin foil hattish as it sounds, one has to wonder how much of it arises organically from the growth of the trade and how much is manufactured by the DEA themselves to justify their presence. But I digress.

David McCann, the citizen who laid the Canadian charges and doesn't know Emery, says he filed the suit out of anger over the hypocrisy of his government's stance.
"You can't, for 10 or 12 years, give somebody licence to operate their business and collect taxes from them and then come along later and let him be extradited to another country to face charges for operating that business," he said.
How true and especially galling when as Marc notes, "...there are still over 100 seed companies in Canada that are operating without any interference and that inexplicably I was targeted." The explanation is obvious. As stated in the ONDCP's own press release, Marc was targeted for his activism on drug policy reform and more exactly for funding drug reform activists in the US.

It's got nothing to do with seeds and everything to do with suppressing the success of the policy reform movement here. And maybe a little something to do with simple petty revenge for Marc having made a mockery of John Walters at a speech he gave in Vancouver a couple of years ago.

Come to think of it, I believe that was right around the time the DEA opened their office....


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