Courts Still Coming Down Hard on People Selling Cannabis

Article by Mike Hager, Globe and Mail

Courts still coming down hard on people selling cannabis MIKE HAGER

A Winnipeg man was sentenced this week to 10 months in prison after getting caught with a folding knife, a scale, cellphones, baggies and almost three times the legal cannabis limit of 30 grams.
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Three months after Rodney Clayton Felix was caught in a mall with 86 grams of cannabis, the Liquor, Gaming and Cannabis Authority of Manitoba handed out two $2,500 tickets to vendors caught selling thousands of illegal THC-infused edibles and more than a kilogram of dried bud at the HempFest Cannabis Expo in the same city.
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And in another case, Manitoba-based cannabis producer Bonify had its sales licence suspended by Health Canada earlier this year after allegedly selling 210 kilograms of substandard marijuana purchased from the illicit market but sold through licensed retail outlets. No criminal charges have resulted from that incident.
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Critics say the different punishments in these cases show Canada’s enforcement of its new cannabis laws is as arbitrary and heavy-handed as it was before legalization, which made squeezing out the illicit market a core priority.
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Spokeswoman Nathalie Houle said the fact that recreational cannabis is now legalized has no bearing on the PPSC’s position that drug dealers should be sentenced to periods in jail similar to how they were under the old cannabis laws.
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The authorities have the discretion to hand out a maximum $200 ticket for people caught with more than 30 grams in public or, if there is much more cannabis or other items such as baggies or “score sheets” showing customer data, the person can be charged with possessing cannabis for the purpose of distribution, which carries a maximum sentence of 14 years.

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