British Columbia

B.C. man freed after 3 years in Mexican prison

A Vancouver man has been reunited with his family after spending three-and-a-half years in a Mexican prison on drug charges without trial.
Kulesik, at his North Vancouver home, holds a document from Mexican authorities that clears him of all charges against him. (Wilson Wong/CBC)

A Vancouver man has been reunited with his family after spending three-and-a-half years in a Mexican prison on drug charges without trial.

Pavel Kulisek was greeted by his wife and two daughters as he arrived in Vancouver Thursday, two days after a Mexican judge cleared him of drug trafficking charges for lack of evidence.

Kulisek was arrested in Mexico in March 2008 while on an extended vacation with his family.

Police swooped into a restaurant on the Baja Peninsula while he was having dinner with two Mexican men, one who had been a neighbour and another to whom Kulisek had sold construction materials, Kulisek said.

It turned out that both men were involved in the drug trade, which Kulisek claims he did not know.

Kulisek's case never came to trial. His lawyer said a background check performed by the RCMP showed that his client was not involved in any prior criminal activity.

"I would like to extend my deepest gratitude to those who have supported and helped Pavel and our family during our painful journey over the past three years," Kulisek's wife, Jirina, said in a release Thursday.

"Without all of you, my girls and I would not have survived this terrible ordeal."

now