Five stores over the line

Chris ClayChris Clay

Chris Clay of Hemp Nation, London, Ontario

charges: Cultivation of a narcotic, possession of a narcotic for the purposes of trafficking, and trafficking in a narcotic.

defence: The prohibition of marijuana is unconstitutional on many grounds, and Chris will call many expert witnesses to testify about different aspects of this.

story: On May 17, 1995, Chris Clay offered marijuana clones for sale in his store and was arrested four hours later. Police also seized about $30,000 in merchandise. Chris is being defended for free by noted lawyer Alan Young, and they are trying to raise money to pay for the appearance of expert witnesses.

quote: “The Crown Attorney has offered to drop all charges except simple possession if a guilty plea is entered. A discharge would likely result, but I have refused and the constitutional challenge will continue as planned.”

  • contact: Chris Clay at Hemp Nation, (519) 433-5267, or email [email protected].

    Marc Emery

    Marc Emery of Hemp BC, Vancouver, BC

    charges: eight counts of trafficking in marijuana (seeds) and one count of possession for the purposes of trafficking.

    defence: constitutional challenge against prohibition of marijuana, also appeal to reasonable jury, that seeds contain no THC or active ingredients.

    story: Marc had been selling seeds for many months, but on January 5, 1996, (exactly one month after a mention in the Wall Street Journal) Vancouver police raided his store and office. Police seized about $50,000 in pipes and bongs, and about the same value in seeds. No charges have been laid in relation to the paraphernalia, but it has not been returned.

    quote: “I will continue to sell marijuana seeds and violate the cannabis pogrom laws until they are completely eliminated from our society.”

  • contact: Marc Emery at Hemp BC,

    (604) 669-9052, or email [email protected].

    Ken Venema

    Ken Venema of Kaiyun, Thunder Bay, Ontario

    charge: Selling paraphernalia in violation of section 462.2.

    defence: The ban on pipes and scales is arbitrary and unreasonably vague, and therefore unconstitutional.

    story: On December 14, 1995, Ontario Police raided Ken Venema’s jewellery store, which also carries a small selection of pipes and bongs. They seized about $5,000 in merchandise, and charged him under section 462.2.

    quote: “Both scales and pipes have many uses unrelated to marijuana. How can I be held responsible for the possible activities of a customer?”

  • contact: Ken Venema of Kaiyun, at (807) 345-1149.

    Ian Hunter

    Ian Hunter of Sacred Herb, Victoria, BC

    charges: Possession of marijuana, possession of marijuana for the purpose of trafficking, cultivation of marijuana, possession of psilocybe mushroom.

    defence: Appeal to reasonable jury, that marijuana is a beneficial and sacred plant.

    story: On June 17, 1996, Ian was charged with possession of one gram of marijuana on the steps of Langford City Hall, after meeting with their city council about their banning a hemp store from their municipality.

    He was later charged with cultivation after police seized a pot plant that was growing in the window of his store, and at that time they seized some of the marijuana seeds that he sells, and also charged him with possession of psilocybe.

    quote: “Given the failure of the courts and parliament to deal with this issue, it’s up to the responsible individual to deal with it and disobey an unjust law.”

  • Contact: Ian Hunter of Sacred Herb at (604) 384-0659, or email [email protected].

    Randy Caine

    Randy Caine of The Joint, Surrey, BC

    charge: Possession of marijuana (a quarter gram).

    defence: The prohibition of the possession of marijuana is unconstitutional.

    story: On June 13, 1993, Randy was arrested for possession of a roach after smoking a joint with a friend. Charges were laid despite the small quantity, and so Randy joined forces with cannabis-friendly lawyer John Conroy. John and Randy have launched a constitutional challenge, claiming that the prohibition of the possession of marijuana is unreasonable in a free and democratic society.

    Their constitutional challenge is designed so that anyone else who is charged for possession can join in and postpone their own trial for years.

    Randy has become more of an activist since his arrest, and now owns a hemp store and cafe called The Joint.

    quote: “Every time a person pleads guilty to a possession charge they are supporting the existing system. The time is long overdue for each personwho is charged to fight back.”

  • contact: Randy Caine at The Joint,
    (604) 583-7004, or email [email protected].

  • Contact John Conroy at (604) 852-5110, or email [email protected]


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