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Return Marc Emery to Canada FULL Press Conference


JODIE EMERY I am Jodie Emery I am here today
calling upon Justice Minister Steven Blaney to please approve the transfer request application
of my husband. My husband Marc Emery is currently incarcerated in Mississippi State where he
is serving a five year sentence for selling seeds through the mail from Canada. The United
States government has agreed that Marc is eligible for transfer to Canada, reviewed
his application and they said that he is able to come home unfortunately I’m just waiting
on the Canadian government as well. It is simply a document that the government has
had since 2011 to review Marc’s transfer request but since July this year we have been waiting
for the government here to make a decision on my husband’s transfer request. It is very
difficult for me I’m bringing a picture here of my husband and I in prison, I have to travel
all the way down to Mississippi simply to see him and it causes a lot of suffering,
expense and hardship for me to have to go so far to see my husband and I am simply asking
the public safety minister Steven Blaney to approve Marc’s transfer request to come home
and to recognize that there is enormous public and political support for Marc’s transfer
over the years asking for him to please finish the sentence in Canada. I am honored to be
joined by members of the opposition who are here to represent many of Canadians who feel
that Marc Emery should be transferred home and I’m grateful for their support in advocating
a Canadian citizen who has never harmed anyone, for him to be able to return to his home country
of Canada and that the government should recognized his citizenship and bring him home to me his
wife who desperately wants him back at home close to me. So I would like to ask up Libby
Davies honourable member of parliament Libby Davies to comment on this.
LIBBY DAVIES Well thank you very much Jodie and my name is Libby Davies I am the member
of parliament for vancouver east and I’ve known Jodie for many years and Marc and first
thing I want to say is that Jodie you have been reMarcable in your courage and your steadfast
support of Marc. I’ve watched you over the years and just the tremendous work you have
done in keeping the campaign alive and bringing it to the public attention. I totally agree
with you there is tremendous public support to Bring Marc home, you know I was thinking
about this issue on my way here and remembering that it was July 2005 so more than 8 years
ago that Marc Emery was arrested by the DEA in Vancouver I remember the day very well
because of particular circumstances and it is really an incredible story that this Canadian
who would never have been charged in Canada for selling seeds on the Internet was arrested
and the fought the whole extradition process, of course did get extradited and has now received
this jail sentence it really is an incredible story of someone who has really poised no
threat. No harm to any Canadian any US citizen and has had to go through this incredible
process now still serving a sentence. I’ve written to many, many ministers of justice
over the years first of all about the extradition but now about trying to insure that Marc is
returned to Canada to serve his sentence and I think it is really important that we speak
out clearly and say to the public safety minister today that we want him to consider this case
on it’s merit and should be putting aside political ideology and political considerations.
I was very distressed to see the comments from Mr Blaney’s spokesperson on Monday who
basically took shots at MPS saying “well you know the opposition party obviously want to
continue to make the drug trade a priority this press conference today is not about the
drug trade This press conference today is about a Canadian citizen who has gone through
due process in the states to be returned to Canada has been approved by the US justice
department to be returned to Canada so this issue is about whether or not we have a minister
of public safety who will be responsible and look at this application not delay it and
delay it until it is too late but look at this application and to make a determination
on whether or not Mr Emery meets the criteria which we believe he does eminently therefore
should be returned to Canada so he can be close to family his wife his community to
serve out his sentence. It is that straight forward in terms of the issue that we are
presenting today, I am very happy to be here, I would also like to say that the NDP public
safety critic Randal garrison couldn’t be here today he is in Toronto but he also very
much supports Jodie and this application to the Canadian minister. So we want to say to
Mr Blaney put aside the politics do the right thing allow Marc Emery to come home you will
be well supported by Canadians if you make that decision. Thank you.
WAYNE EASTER: I am Wayne Easter I am the member of parliament for malpeque for the liberal
party of Canada and public safety critic for the party and I too want to congratulate Jodie
on her campaign to bring Marc home it is the right thing to do. I am going to approach
it a little bit of a different angle than Libby did I’m a former solicitor general which
is now called the minister of public safety and I’ve had considerable experience with
the international transfer of offenders act in fact I have signed quite a number of transfers
when I was solicitor general I think it is important to mention here what was the purpose
of that act, an agreements that is signed with other countries to allow for transfer
of offenders between those countries and in this case it’s the US. Simply put if there
is mutual agreement between the two countries that would allow the prisoner the offender
to be transfer closer to home and when they believe in a rehabilitative system to you
believe in not punishing the family of the offender who is involved and that makes a
whole lot of sense. To bring the person that has been charged the offender closer to home
so that they can be with their family so that the family isn’t suffering. They can’t see
in this case their husband. That is important to the individual in terms of getting on with
life when they get out of prison, you know until Vic Toews Came along as minister it
was almost standard procedure for a minister of public safety or a solicitor general to
sign those transfers when there was agreement between the two parties involved and I think
we ought to make a determination if the prison system is all about vindictiveness punishment
or if it is about rehabilitation and not punishing the other family members who were not the
ones in prison. As Jodie said Marc’s transfer has been approved by the United States department
of justice Marc’s sentencing judge and prosecutor both support taht transfer the only stumbling
block is this government there is 2 key criteria in terms of allowing a prisoners to come back
to Canada and serve out the remainder of their sentence in this country and that really is
that the individual doesn’t poise a threat to Canada and that he is not a member of organized
crime. Marc Emery clearly fits the criteria, he has the support on the American side and
it only makes sense for this government to allow that transfer to occur so he can serve
out the remainder of his sentence in his own country. What’s Canadian citizenship mean?
That is one of the other key questions here, this is a Canadian citizen who has served
a lot of his time in the united states and I believe the government of Canada has an
obligation to sign this transfer and allow him to come back to Canada. Last point would
be this Steven Blaney is a new minster of public safety Steven Blaney this minister
has the opportunity to turn the page and say that this isn’t all about political ideology
vindictiveness and punishment Marc Emery has served a lot of his time in the united states
and all it takes for him to do that and be closer to his family is the ministers signature
on a document that is all we are asking this minster to do. Thank you very much.
ELIZABETH MAY if I can I just want to add words of support as member of parliament from
Saanich-Gulf for the green party it is very clear that Marc Emery who has been put in
a prison in Mississippi think of that with his wife living in Vancouver the distance
is extraordinary and the costs to the family is huge
FRENCH (I’ll add a bit of French because it is clear that Mr. Blaney, now , as the new
Minister has the opportunity to do something different than the former Minister Vic Toews.
We are a group of people here , we require Mr. Blaney to sign the license Mark Emery
so he could finish his sentence in Canada. This is not a request to ignore the crime,
but it is clear that this is a political rather than criminal offense really , but that’s
another debate. It is now clear that the Federal Government of the United States is consistent
with the transfer of Mark Emery in Canada at the end of his sentence so that it is closer
to his wife, and also his family. It is clear that this is a matter of justice and everyone
here calls , Mr. Blaney asked to sign forms and allow Mr. Emery, someone who makes threats
to anyone, to return to Canada . It is a matter of justice.)
Q&A Jodie Emery I guess um you said the the request has been in since 2011 have you heard
anything at all from public safety with regards to that whether it was under Toews or with
the new minister and just quickly also how long does Emery have left in his sentence?
JODIE EMERY Well, I haven’t heard anything back from the minister myself except for receiving
correspondence from supporters who received letters acknowledging the receipt of the letter
but basically saying nothing I’ve been tweeting at the minister twitter is very popular and
useful so he’s quite aware of what I’m requesting but I have not received any answers at all.
Before Marc applied in 2011 with the united states government that initially rejected
his application and he did have to wait two years but since the approval of the United
States Department of Justice in July the Canadian government has been able to sign off there
is no deadline for it it simply requires a bit of pressure I imagine but I haven’t received
any response whatsoever and I do hope that I will receive one Marc is doing a five-year
sentence he was facing thirty years to life in accepted a five-year plea deal which began
in 2010 his early release for good behavior is eighty-five percent of the sentence and
that’s july 9th 2014 so Marc doesn’t have too long to go in the remainder of his sentence
but it would make sense to us for him to come home and finish his sentence closer to home
on Canadian soil Q and also the follow-up some of the MPs mention
that they think that the fact that its sort of been unanswered may be politically motivated
I’m wondering what you make those comments whether you agree?
JODIE EMERY I think it’s fair to say that my husband Marc Emery is very high profile
he is well recognized as a marijuana activist and advocate for legalization he has always
used peaceful non-violent means to promote that idea but this government has taken a
very firm stance against marijuana legalization even though the country next to us is legalizing
it right up against our border I believe that this government isn’t interested in transferring
Marc and they’re not interested many transfer applications and I hope that they wouldn’t
make it political but unfortunately as pointed out the answer they’ve given is about the
drug trade and that’s not what this is about it all it’s about a Canadian citizen under
the treaty seeking to be brought home so it may be political this government tends to
take a firm stand against marijuana legalization and I believe that might have a role to play
but I sure hope it doesn’t END

Robin Kshlerin

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12 COMMENTS

  1. Shan Santee Posted on October 30, 2013 at 9:31 pm

    When gets released,will he sell seeds again?

    Reply
  2. Danktrain Posted on October 30, 2013 at 9:43 pm

    Send a Canadian peaceful man down to Mississippi to serve for what? A failing drug war.

    Reply
  3. MsCanadianCannabis Posted on October 30, 2013 at 9:44 pm

    Free Marc Emery
    .
    Peace

    Reply
  4. Cryptopolis Posted on October 31, 2013 at 1:58 am

    If this was an executive with an oil company sitting in a US prison, the paperwork would've been signed by Toews or Blaney ahead of time, and would've been faxed to US Federal authorities at the earliest possible time to ensure that he or she did not spend one day more than necessary in US Federal Prison.

    The truth is that the CPC does not care about regular Canadians and feels extreme antipathy towards people like Marc who promote causes that the CPC have decided are "evil".

    Reply
  5. Cryptopolis Posted on October 31, 2013 at 2:07 am

    Also, anyone who thinks that Blaney or Toews gets to make a decision like this on their own is being naive. This kind of decision is made by the PMO, and trying to appeal to Harper's better nature on an issue like this is like asking a hurricane to stop blowing. It doesn't hear you and it is indifferent to the damage & suffering that it causes.

    Reply
  6. xxTheBeyondWithin Posted on October 31, 2013 at 10:34 am

    HohHOOOOOOY XD XD XD XD XD

    Reply
  7. Richard McMillan Posted on November 3, 2013 at 6:50 pm

    twitter(dot)com/MinStevenBlaney

    SHAME

    Reply
  8. docatomics Posted on November 3, 2013 at 9:03 pm

    ☢☢☢ history shall shamefully show that MARC EMERY's arrest was a legal precedent test case that today (after 3 policy adjustments starting @ 50 km) permits United States Government Inc. & agents free, irrevocable & unfettered cross boarder access including Armed Military Surveillance Complex Drones up to 200 km inside Canada boarder
    = as GLBOAList's state of such international capers against all affairs of Sovereignty, take a inch, then a mile, then steal the that whole dam thing & make it ours

    Reply
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