24. Regina v. Z.E.Y [Provincial Court of Alberta, Calgary – November, 2012]
The police were conducting surveillance relative to a robbery when they stopped a suspicious vehicle in which our client was a passenger. As the police approached the vehicle they detected the overwhelming scent of fresh marijuana. The police immediately arrested our client and seized a bulging backpack located at his feet. The police searched the backpack and found what they described as a “substantial amount of bagged and packaged marijuana”. The police also seized (from the seat occupied by our client) a digital scale. To complicate matters from a defense perspective our client provided the police with a detailed warned statement in which he candidly admitted to selling marijuana. As a reward for our client’s cooperation in this regard the police promptly charged him with possession of cannabis marijuana for the purpose of trafficking. A couple of offers from the Crown to resolve this most serious prosecution by way of a guilty plea as charged in exchange for a conditional sentence order (i.e. house arrest) were rejected. A plea of not guilty was entered and a trial scheduled. During the course of trial proceedings it became abundantly apparent to the Crown that their case was not as compelling as originally thought. There were issues vis a vis search and seizure, processing of the so-called cannabis marijuana and other Charter related concerns. Bottom line: the matter was dealt with in its entirety by way of a guilty plea to simple possession of marijuana and a nominal $250.00 fine.
Patrick C. Fagan is a highly accomplished lawyer with an impressive career spanning over 35 years in the legal field.