Canadian ‘Prince of Pot’ Supporters Petition Obama for Pardon

October 6, 2011

Friends and supporters of Canada’s so-called “prince of pot” are using one of U.S. President Barack Obama’s democracy outreach projects to get the president to weigh in on Marc Emery’s stay in a U.S. prison.

Under Obama’s newly launched “We The People” program, anyone who can gather 5,000 names on a petition will receive a formal response.

In Emery’s case, the petition-signing effort took just nine days, and the marijuana advocate’s supporters now expect a presidential response within 30 days.

The Vancouver man was extradited to the U.S. in May 2010 to begin his sentence for selling marijuana seeds to Americans through his mail-order business.

“Marc is a political prisoner stolen from his home country for the crime of financing cannabis activism in the U.S.A. and Canada through selling seeds,” said Emery’s wife Jodie.

“There was widespread opposition to his extradition in the first place, and now we’re demonstrating that thousands of people want Marc to be free and sent home to Canada,” she said.

Obama is quoted on a government website, outlining his objectives for the program.

“When I ran for this office, I pledged to make government more open and accountable to its citizens,” the president is quoted as saying. “That’s what the new We the People feature on WhiteHouse.gov is all about — giving Americans a direct line to the White House on the issues and concerns that matter most to them.”

Jodie Emery said that having her husband serve out his sentence in Canada is a reasonable goal.

“He’s a Canadian — American taxpayers shouldn’t be paying for a Canadian to be in jail there,” she said. “That’s always the goal — he should never have left Canada.

“He’s agreed to serve his time, but his supporters are upset that he’s in the United States.”

Emery, 53, is currently behind bars in Mississippi at a medium-security prison, hoping to be set free on an early release date of July 9, 2014.

This article was written by Ian Austin and published by the Vancouver Sun on October 4, 2011.

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Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.

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Canada’s ‘Prince of Pot’ Recently Extradited to Seattle on Marijuana Conspiracy Charges

June 14, 2010

Marc Emery, 51, of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, was recently extradited to Seattle, on an indictment for conspiracy to manufacture marijuana, conspiracy to distribute marijuana seeds, and conspiracy to engage in money laundering. Emery was indicted by a federal grand jury in 2005, but was not extradited by Canadian officials until last month, May 2010.

He pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to manufacture marijuana in exchange for an agreed sentence of five years in prison. He is to be sentenced in August, and prosecutors or Emery may withdraw from the plea deal if the judge issues a different sentence.

According to the indictment and other records filed in the case, Marc Emery has operated Marc Emery Direct since 1994, taking orders for marijuana seeds over the internet. According to the website, at the time of his arrest in 2005, Emery had made more than $3 million annually, illegally selling marijuana seeds. According to court filings, Emery seeds are associated with multiple illegal grow operations across the U.S. The Drug Enforcement Administration has traced Emery seeds to illegal grows in Indiana, Florida, California, Tennessee, Montana, Virginia, Michigan, New Jersey and North Dakota. An estimated 75% of the seeds Emery sold up until 2005, were transported to the United States.

Last year, Emery’s two co-defendants pleaded guilty and were sentenced to probationary sentences. Michelle Rainey assisted with Emery’s mail order marijuana seed business filling orders that came in by mail. Between 2003 and 2005, Rainey earned as much as $1,000 a week mailing out the seeds. Gregory Keith Williams handled the phone orders for the business. Williams also worked at the seed desk, selling seeds directly to customers who came into Emery’s store. On numerous occasions in 2004, Williams and Emery sold seeds to a Drug Enforcement Administration undercover agent. The indictment was returned following an 18 month investigation.

The recent extradition has raised questions among Canadians, where supporters, civil rights advocates and even several members of parliament have demanded to know why he was handed over to the U.S. for an offense that Canada seldom prosecutes.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the firm practice and write extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, Interpol Litigation, International Extradition and OFAC Litigation.

The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.

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