June 22, 2011 2:19 pm

Marijuana laws can stand until appeal is heard, Ontario’s highest court says


TORONTO – Ontario’s highest court has stayed a lower court ruling that could make marijuana possession legal in the province.

The Public Prosecution Service of Canada says the Ontario Superior Court decision from April 11 is suspended until the Court of Appeal for Ontario rules in the case of a St. Catharines, Ont., man.

The April decision rendered invalid the Marijuana Medical Access Regulations and parts of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act.

Justice Donald Taliano ordered that Ottawa fix the medical marijuana program or face the prospect of effectively legalizing marijuana.

The Crown is appealing Taliano’s ruling in the case of Matthew Mernagh that the medical marijuana program is invalid, as are the laws prohibiting possession and production of cannabis, since they can be used to criminally charge medical users unable to get the drugs legally.

The appeal states that Taliano made critical errors in law by declaring the federal medical marijuana program unconstitutional.

No date has been set for the Appeal Court hearing.

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