R. v. KEM [Provincial Court of Alberta, Cochrane – July 2021]

SUMMARY: While operating a motor vehicle on the Trans-Canada Highway near Lake Louise KEM was stopped by the RCMP and subjected to a Pipeline investigation. As a consequence of that investigation the police seized over 30 kilograms of cannabis marijuana from the vehicle and charged KEM with possession of that substance for the purpose of trafficking. 

Bottom Line: Patrick Fagan was successful in convincing the Crown of the strength of his constitutional arguments vis a vis the “Pipeline” stop and the matter was successfully resolved by way of the entry of a Stay of Proceedings of ALL charges.

The RCMP were conducting traffic enforcement duties on the Trans-Canada Highway near Lake Louise when (allegedly) thry observed KEM’s vehicle “fail to maintain the centre of its lane.: Translation from a Defence perspective: KEM’s vehicle fit a drug interdiction Pipeline profile and the investigator came up with an ostensibly “legitimate” excuse to pull the vehicle over.

In accordance with standard Pipeline investigative methodology, the police engaged KEM in a roadside Q & A during which they used the answers provided to support grounds to detain. The police did detain KEM and thereafter deployed a police service dog who “hit” on the vehicle. As a consequence of that hit, the police to searched KEM’s vehicle. That search resulted in the seizure of 30.35 kilograms of cannabis marijuana.