Pot-Trial Lawyer Given Time to Prepare Questioning

A Victoria man’s challenge to Health Canada’s medical marijuana access regulations was delayed in B.C. Supreme Court Wednesday to allow his defence lawyer to prepare for a cross-examination.

Owen Edward Smith, 29, challenged the regulations in relation to charges against him from Dec. 3, 2009, when a police search of a downtown apartment turned up large amounts of pot cookies and cannabis-infused baking oils.

Smith was the head baker for the Cannabis Buyers’ Club of Canada at the time. Officers discovered the apartment was being used as a bakery to make items to be sold through the club.

They charged Smith with possession for the purpose of trafficking THC and unlawful possession of marijuana.

His court challenge began Jan. 16, but quickly went into a voir dire – a trial within a trial – when defence lawyer Kirk Tousaw challenged the validity of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act.

On Wednesday, the Crown’s key witness, Hanan Abramovici, was supposed to testify, but Tousaw said he had not been given enough time to prepare.

Justice Robert Johnston agreed and adjourned the trial until Monday.

Johnston said “there may be a risk” in providing the accused with an “inadequate opportunity to cross-examine.”

– Article from Times Colonist.



  1. William Liberty on

    For the first time in history a majourity of people in Canada support decriminalization and regulation of marijuana. The Liberal Party of Canada may finally get marijuana regulated and into stores if elected in the next election. Unfortunately, we can’t count on that but there is a case to be won in the courts if only a lawyer committed to the science could be found. I work in media but I have a degree in statistical research design and analysis and have written a book, The Path of the Pure Creature, available on amazon.com about forming empirical evidence based beliefs. As I argued in my book, it is the facts regarding long term and short term health effects of marijuana use as well as facts about addiction that will win the day in court. It’s not a large amount of information required.

    Only three sets of statistics and facts are required to unequivocally establish the safety of marijuana for public use:
    1) Statistics on the proportion of casual vs regular users of each recreational drug. This is unbiased information about the addictiveness of a drug because obviously if a drug has very few casual users it must be highly addictive like tobacco is for example.
    2) Overdose statistics for each recreational drug. What happens to people when they do too much in a short period of time?
    3) Chronic use statistics; What happens to people when they regularly use a recreational drug over a long period of time?

    This empirical data needs to be competently compiled and a court challenge based on the Charter of Rights and Freedoms started.

  2. Riley M on

    Pretty sad state of affairs when the leader of Canada wants to put large quantities of our youth population into hellish jail cells for smoking a drug that is obviously everywhere, and harmless. The CIA has been caught shipping drugs like cocaine into the states, no doubt there shipping here too. So the government designs the drug war, brings in the drugs, then sets you up to either become an addict and torture you that way, or steal your freedom and toss you into the worse possible conditions(jail) for being a victim of their scam. Awesome system this is, freaking joke conservatives are gonna burn in hell.