The police attended the scene of a minor residential fire. The firefighters, who had already cleared the residence, informed the police that they had observed a number of items associated with illegal drug use. The police entered the residence (without a warrant) and observed what they believed to be a substantial quantity of drug paraphernalia. The police left the residence and proceeded to interrogate JCL outside the home. JCL refused to cooperate with the police so they re-entered the home (still no warrant) and seized all of the drug related items.
When the police arrived back at the station they discovered that they had seized much more than they had thought. Specifically, the police seizure from the residence included 4 ½ kilograms of powder cocaine (with an estimated street value of $461,150.00), ¾ kilogram of crack cocaine (with a street value of approximately $76,750.00), over ½ a kilogram of crystal methamphetamine (with a street value of approximately $53,504.00), 1497 ecstasy pills (with a street value of approximately $29,940.00) and 388.9 grams of ketamine (with a street value of approximately $19,445.00). Well . . . all of a sudden the police decide that it may be prudent from an investigatory perspective to obtain a warrant to search. The police returned to the residence with a warrant where they seized other drug related items and arrested JCL.
The police charged JCL with 5 counts of possession of a controlled substance for the purpose of trafficking, production of a controlled substance, possessing proceeds of crime and weapons offences. An election of trial by way of Queen’s Bench was entered and a date scheduled for preliminary inquiry.
Bottom Line: Conduct of this prosecution was given to an experienced Crown agent. Through protracted discussion/negotiation with the agent, Patrick Fagan was successful in having this most serious drug prosecution resolved in its entirety by way of a complete withdrawal of all charges at the preliminary inquiry.