Saskatoon

Charged owner to reopen Saskatoon marijuana dispensary today

Mark Hauk to give advice, offer information and referrals to medical marijuana users

Mark Hauk - Compassion Club

Saskatchewan Compassion Club owner Mark Hauk. (Devin Heroux/CBC)

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Mark Hauk, the owner of an unlicensed medical marijuana dispensary in Saskatoon, says he'll reopen his dispensary today, after spending Thursday night in jail and Friday morning in front of a judge to face drug trafficking charges related to his business.

"I don't have a condition that I can't be at the store," Hauk said at a protest staged in front of the Saskatoon police headquarters on Saturday afternoon.

He was released on $1,000 bail on Friday morning after appearing before a judge at Provincial Court.

"To be there and do advocacy work, it's not a breach of conditions, it's not against the law. And it's work that needs to be done," he said, noting he'll be providing "advice to patients in any way that they need it."

Hauk's business, the Saskatchewan Compassion Club, is designed to help medical marijuana users easily access the drug. On Thursday, the business was raided by 10 Saskatoon police officers, according to Hauk.

He and three other employees at the dispensary were arrested and charged that day.

"There's a lot of work for us to do there outside of us dispensing medicine, and I'm happy to be back there Monday doing that," he said.

On the day of the raid, Saskatoon police members confiscated Hauk's computers, phone and marijuana, he said.

Speaking to reporters that day, Det. Insp. Dave Haye said the four accused broke the law. "They are marijuana trafficking, so they are drug traffickers," Haye said at a news conference.

There's a lot of work for us to do there outside of us dispensing medicine, and I'm happy to be back there Monday doing that. - Mark Hauk, Saskatchewan Compassion Club owner

The dispensary owner maintains that he was cooperative and open to dialogue with police and the city in the weeks and days leading up to Thursday's raid. 

The Saskatchewan Compassion Club has more than 600 registered members, according to Hauk.

He said the dispensary only provides medical marijuana to members with a valid prescription for the drug. "That's been a clear line in the sand since day one."

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