Pubdate: Sat, 11 Sep 2010
Source: Seattle Times (WA)
Copyright: 2010 The Seattle Times Company
Author: Mike Carter
Bookmark: http://www.mapinc.org/find?196 (Emery, Marc)
CANADA’S ‘PRINCE OF POT’ SENTENCED TO FIVE YEARS FOR SELLING MILLIONS
OF CANNABIS SEEDS
Marc Emery, Canada’s “Prince of Pot” and a powerful voice in the
debate over the decriminalization of marijuana, was sent to federal
prison for five years on Friday for selling millions of cannabis
seeds by mail and phone order, the culmination of a five-year
prosecution and plea agreement that saw Emery extradited from Vancouver.
In a statement to U.S. District Judge Ricardo Martinez and in a
letter to the court, Emery admitted his attempt to force a change in
U.S. and Canadian drug laws through “civil disobedience” and flouting
the laws was “overzealous and reckless.”
“I acted arrogantly in violation of U.S. federal law,” he wrote. “I
regret not choosing other methods — legal ones — to achieve my
goals of peaceful political reform.
“In my zeal, I had believed that my actions were wholesome, but my
behavior was in fact illegal and set a bad example for others,” he said.
The five-year prison sentence was no surprise. Emery and the
government had agreed to it as part of a deal that saw Emery
surrender to U.S. authorities in May after fighting extradition from
Canada for four years.
Two clerks who worked for him at his seed store in Canada had pleaded
guilty earlier and received probation.
Emery was indicted in 2005, and at the time, the then-director of
Drug Enforcement Administration, Karen Tandy, called Emery’s 2005
arrest a “significant blow” to drug trafficking and the
“Drug-legalization lobbyists have one less pot of money to rely on,”
Tandy said at the time.