Reverend Mike Ethier, of Sturgeon Falls Ontario, is still in prison for marijuana charges stemming from a raid on his home after police intercepted a package of medical marijuana sent by him to the Church of the Universe’s High Council (see CC#28, Church of the Universe under fire). Having cut a deal with regards to a portion of the charges, he was released on November 12, but still faces a charge of trafficking and possession in relation to the incident.
“He notified us that he has fired his lawyer and will be working with us now,” said Church of the Universe founder Reverend Walter Tucker, who is famous for his unusually inventive and effective approaches in court.
A court date has yet to be set for Reverend Ethier.
Church of the Universe in Supreme Court
Controlled Drug and Substances Act is un-constitutional.
Meanwhile, the Church of the Universe is pressing forward with their own court cases.
“On November 6 we will be appearing before the Supreme Court of Canada and asking them to throw out the CDSA as unconstitutional,” says Reverend Tucker.
The CDSA was ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court in the case of Chris Clay and Terry Parker, earlier this year. But the courts gave Parliament one year to change the law before it was deemed ineffective.
“We will be arguing that they had no legal jurisdiction to extend the life of the CDSA, having already announced it void and unconstitutional,” explained Tucker. “They have the power to strike it, but not to delay it for a year.”
Reverend Tucker and Reverend Michael Baldasaro, an archbishop of the church, are also awaiting a date for their challenge to the country’s freedom of religion guarantees. They are asking the courts to acknowledge their right to use cannabis as a sacrament.