Mark Hauk, the 36-year-old owner of Saskatoon's unlicensed medical marijuana dispensary, has been charged with drug trafficking and released on $1,000 bail after appearing in Saskatoon Provincial Court on Friday morning.
Speaking with reporters after he emerged from court mid-day on Friday, Hauk called the Saskatoon Police Service "gutless" for the manner in which they handled his arrest and charges.
"The actions the Saskatoon Police Service took yesterday were nothing short of shameful and gutless," he said. "I have had two meetings with Chief Weighill over the last three weeks, which he has postponed on me."
A Saskatoon police spokeswoman said Weighill had set up a meeting with Hauk, but had to cancel it due to personal reasons.
4 arrests made in raid
Yesterday, Saskatoon police raided the club and made the four arrests, which included Hauk, a 24-year-old Saskatoon man, and two Saskatoon women, aged 23 and 39.
"The actions the Saskatoon Police Service took yesterday were nothing short of shameful and gutless." - Mark Hauk, owner of Saskatchewan Compassion Club
Hauk added that "10 drug officers" entered his business yesterday without any warning — phone, e-mail or otherwise — and filed the four accused "out the back door so no one could see it happen."
Activists smoking mad after raid
Leading up to Hauk's appearance, angry marijuana advocates and users were protesting outside the provincial courthouse today after Saskatoon police raided the Saskatoon Compassion Club yesterday.
The group was smoking joints and one protester, Jeff Lundstrom, referred to the Saskatoon police as "Nazi war-profiteers."
Protesters said they are opposed to the police arresting and charging Hauk and three other members, apparently affiliated with the Saskatchewan Compassion Club, with drug trafficking.
Lundstrom said shutting down the club means "sick people [will be forced] to the black market or other sources to find their canabis."
The four accused appeared in court this morning in Saskatoon.
Saskatchewan Compassion Club opened this summer
The club, which opened in August, is designed to help people easily gain access to medical marijuana.
Saskatoon police had previously warned founder Mark Hauk that the club would be closed down if it was found to be breaking the law.
After Hauk faced his charges, Saskatchewan Compassion Club customer Kelly Anderson called for the resignation of Mayor Don Atchison. He said the arrests and charged are "political."
"I'm calling for Don Atchison and our Chief of Police to step down from their positions immediately. I don't think they should be there and I don't want them there. I've got no respect for these people anymore. Again, they have a personal agenda. They are not in line with the will of the people in this country... in this city," Anderson said.
Al Goodmundson attended the day's court proceedings as a way of doing his "part to represent those that need medical marijuana." He said he's not a user of marijuana now.
His message to the Saskatoon police: "This is low-hanging fruit. Do your jobs. Go after the hard drugs. You know where they are. Citizens know where they are. Do your jobs. Take the time, use our taxpayer dollars wisely and don't do this."
Hauk faces charges of trafficking marijuana and cannabis resin, possession for the purpose of trafficking marijuana and possession of the proceeds of crime.
The two women are both facing trafficking and possession charges.
The 24-year-old man is also facing charges of trafficking and possession for the purpose of trafficking.