Canada: Marc Emery to Accept Canadian Prison Time on US Charges

Marc Emery, Canada's most well-known marijuana activist, has reached a tentative plea bargain agreement with US federal prosecutors who charged him and two associates as drug dealers for selling marijuana seeds to customers in the US. Emery, Michelle Rainey, and Greg Williams had all faced a minimum 10-year sentence and the possibility of life if convicted in the US. Under the deal reached, Emery said, he will serve a minimum of five years behind bars, mostly in Canada.
Marc and Jodie Emery (from
Emery said the deal was contingent on the dropping of charges against Rainey and Williams.

Assistant US Attorney Todd Greenberg in Seattle, where Emery was indicted in 2005, has so far declined to comment on the plea agreement. An extradition hearing is still set for Monday in Vancouver, he noted.

Selling marijuana seeds is illegal under Canadian law, but seed shops flourish, and the last conviction was against Emery in 1998. He was fined $2,000. Since then, he ran a well-publicized seed business, paying more than $600,000 in Canadian income taxes on his business until he was shut down when arrested by Canadian authorities at the behest of the US in 2005.

A flamboyant character who founded the BC Marijuana Party, Emery ran for elective office on numerous occasions, published Cannabis Culture magazine, and had his own Internet TV network, Pot TV. An avid critic of marijuana prohibition who thumbed his nose at US authorities, Emery was ultimately too juicy a target for American drug warriors to resist.

Indeed, after his arrest in 2005, then DEA administrator Karen Tandy gloated about it -- and helped Emery make his case that his bust was politically motivated. "Today's DEA arrest of Marc Scott Emery, publisher of Cannabis Culture magazine, and the founder of a marijuana legalization group -- is a significant blow not only to the marijuana trafficking trade in the US and Canada, but also the marijuana legalization movement," she said in a statement that caused consternation in the Seattle federal criminal justice establishment.

"Hundreds of thousands of dollars of Emery's illicit profits are known to have been channeled to marijuana legalization groups active in the United States and Canada. Drug legalization lobbyists now have one less pot of money to rely on."

Despite Tandy's loose-lipped remarks, Greenberg told the Seattle Post-Intelligencer last week that it was merely another criminal investigation. "His politics and the marijuana legalization movement in general have nothing to do with the charges in this case or with why the charges were brought," Greenberg said.

The apparent plea deal has sparked a considerable amount of angst in the Canadian press, with various columnists and editorialists chiding the Canadian government for not fighting to block Emery's extradition, not changing the country's marijuana seed selling laws to fit the reality of non-enforcement (or vice versa), and allowing the Americans to do their dirty work for them in getting rid of an irritating gadfly.

While the plea deal is not yet official, one thing is certain: We have not heard the last of Marc Emery.

Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
Looking for the easiest way to join the anti-drug war movement? You've found it!

Marc Emery

OK, first we identify, then we can tattoo them all id numbers, later we can load them all onto trains and ..... wait, I think that has been tried before. What kind of a world are all the morality police creating ?

The only result that can come from the US policy of world police and Canada bowing down to US demands will be future generations of home grown terrorist's

Another frustrating read

As disheartening as it is to read about Emery's sentencing, I'm actually referring to the first reply to this article. I'm not typically one to become easily offended, but that post really dishonors the memory of Holocaust victims and surviors and does nothing to advance the marijuana movement. The volume of arrests and rate of imprisonment of non-violent drug offenders in contemporary American society are certainly appalling, but to liken it - even obliquely - to Nazi atrocities of the 1930s and '40s is just nuts.

I fear the legalization movement will languish until proponents stop railing about a U.S. police state and start presenting cogent arguments that appeal to John and Jane Doe - particularly to their economic self-interest. I hate that we're routinely dismissed as crackpots in public discourse, but all too many of the comments on DRCNet are indicative of why that is the case.

Injustice prevails

The Canadian government has become servants to their American counterparts, who promote their "conservative" message by imprisoning their opposition. Canada is falling in line with the USA's illegal and immoral policies and actions. Nothing good can come from such pandering.

I believe that the only reason that Mr. Emery would agree to such an unjust plea bargain is to protect his friends from the abuse that they would encounter in the American prison system. One of his co-defendants has Crohn's disease. Prison in America would likely be a death sentence for her.

It appears that the question of the legality of this political extradition will not be challenged. Perhaps the Canadian providences should apply for statehood and end the need to face such issues as fairness and truth, when the US government comes for other Canadian citizens. Today is a truly dark day for liberty, truth and justice in North America.



This information was leaked earlier than Marc could stop it.

I repeat:


Please see for more info...

To be continued...

Alison Myrden
Federal Medical Marijuana Exemptee
Speaker for LEAP
Law Enforcement Against Prohibition

Dead Magazine Publisher's policies live on.

The influence W.R. Hurst had on the prohibition of industrial uses of hemp have yet to be undone in America. It's as if the Hemp farmers who founded this country have been forgotten. Why?
Clarence Dember jr.

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