ANOTHER GROW-OP case has been stayed here after several years of going through the courts.
Charges of production of a controlled substance and possession for the purpose of trafficking against Patricia Kerr were stayed prosecutor Jack Talstra told her lawyer in a March 5th letter.
Defence lawyer Timothy Klaassen was going to argue, at his client’s scheduled court date of March 6, that the trial had been delayed too long and that the court should drop the charges against his client but didn’t have to thanks to the letter.
And Kerr has had a medical marijuana licence for three-and-a-half years now, Klaassen added.
That licence allows her to grow her own marijuana, to possess it and also to have another approved person grow a certain number of plants for her, he said.
On Aug. 5, 2009, Terrace RCMP reported they executed an Aug. 1, 2009 search warrant, seizing more than 100 marijuana plants growing outside at a Rosswood property.
A man and woman were arrested and police expected to recommend charges of production of a controlled substance against both, said police at that time.
“I can say that because of the length of the time that the case took to get to trial that this had an impact on my client who does have a medical use certificate and has had one since September 1, 2009 and I think that that may well have been a factor [in the stay of proceedings],” Klaassen said.
“I think that another factor might be that the co-accused, [Tracey Paul Corbet] there’s been a warrant out for his arrest for several years now and I guess I can say that the expectation was that we were going to be saying that he was the one behind the outdoor grow-op.”
Corbet and Kerr lived together in 2009 but haven’t done so for a long time, added Klaassen.
Since charges were laid back in 2010, Corbet has never appeared for court, said Klaassen.
A Canada-wide warrant was issued for Corbet’s arrest Oct. 12, 2010.
“We were trying to chase primarily the co-accused [Corbet], who had absconded,” said prosecutor Jack Talstra, adding that was one of the major reasons for the delay in getting to trial and the subsequent stay of charges.
“We were hoping to find him in the meantime,” he said.
Charges of production of a controlled substance, possession for the purpose of trafficking, and trafficking a controlled substance will remain outstanding against Corbet, who is believed to be a U.S. citizen.