Dozens protest outside Sydney courthouse after marijuana dispensaries raided
More than 50 people voiced their displeasure outside a Sydney courtroom Monday after the arrest of 38-year-old Donald James Campbell.
Protesters say Campbell is the owner of the marijuana dispensary Cape Breton Medical Cannabis.
“They wrecked his houses, they wrecked his businesses, they wrecked everything and I'm really, really upset,” says Donald Campbell’s mother, Cindy Campbell. “What my son is doing is good for all the people.”
Police searched four properties Friday, seizing $20,000 cash, 11.3 kilograms of marijuana and cannabis products, which they say has a street value of more than $200,000.
“This type of operation, at no time was there any regulation. This is an illegal set up,” says Staff-Sgt. Paul Muise of Cape Breton Regional Police.
Donald Campbell remains in custody and faces numerous charges, including possessing a firearm and five court breaches.
Despite that, he still has a large group of supporters.
“I feel that they were wrongly arrested in this,” says protester Jeff Tobin. “It's borderline legal now and all they're doing is helping people. They've helped me and a lot of other people a great deal.”
Many at the rally arrived with their medical marijuana card, including Amanda Forrest who says she was diagnosed with fibromyalgia and had been taking antidepressants, and other nerve pills, but nothing seemed to ease her pain.
“A couple months ago I became a patient of Cape Breton Medical Cannabis and since then I'm able to do things with my kids. I take them out to the playground now. It eases my migraines,” says Forrest.
Still, police say marijuana dispensaries are illegal and dangerous.
“In the future it's going to be strictly controlled and regulated,” says Muise.
Campbell has been remanded to the Cape Breton Correctional Centre and will be back in court Friday for a bail hearing. Police charged three people in total and shut down two properties they say were operating illegally.
Police say the investigation remains ongoing and more charges could be laid.
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Kyle Moore.