BC Judge Throws Out Police Search Warrant For Suspected Cannabis Grow

Calling police information used to obtain it “thin gruel,” British Columbia Supreme Court Justice Douglas Thompson threw out a search warrant for a suspected cannabis grow facility.

The judge said that Mario Kurtakis had his right to be protected from an unreasonable search decided after police searched his property for proof that the of Tahsis, B.C. man was producing and trafficking cannabis.

RCMP said they issued the warrant after smelling cannabis in Kurtakis’s truck, saw a brick of peat moss and heard what they thought was an industrial fan inside his house.

A trial last month looked at if this evidence was enough for police to validly search the home, with  Thompson deciding that it didn’t amount to “anything more than suspicion.”

The judge offered several other reasonable explanations for the “evidence” collected by police — the peat moss could be used to grow other plants and the noise could have been an A/C unit.

Thompson also said the smell of cannabis, especially smoked cannabis, is “hardly worthy of a mention as evidence of marijuana production.”

“In my opinion an issuing justice making a decision on whether or not to issue a warrant in this marijuana production case would be making a serious error if he or she attached significant weight to the information that marijuana is often being smoked on the property,” his ruling read.