All of the impacts of the recent Smith decision in the BC Court of Appeal have not been fully understood and many questions remain.
While the lawyers debate about how the government will respond, there are a few points I would like to raise about how this case could change the course of Canadian cannabis history. While I am far from a lawyer, breaking the law and studying case law have been things I have spent a lot of time doing.
There is first the question of whether the federal government will appeal this decision to the Supreme Court of Canada. Since there was a dissenting judge, an appeal would be automatically accepted by the SCC. For several reasons we would be very happy to go to Ottawa and argue this case, especially because the dissenting judges reasons were so weak. Though this would delay the outcome, the decision by the SCC would likely clearly direct the government to legalize cannabis extracts for patients.
If the government does not appeal the decision, then it is expected that individuals facing criminal charges of cannabis extracts across the country will use R.v.Smith show the laws are unconstitutional. Unless Health Canada gets the nerve to try the case over, and this case showed they lack the expert witnesses to do that, then we will see cases being thrown out or suspended pending the final outcome of this trial. Eventually the courts in each province will have to either follow Smith as binding or go through a whole new constitutional trial that will likely have the same outcome.
– Read the entire article at Cannabis Digest.