Regina man and woman face drug trafficking, weapon possession charges – Regina


A Regina man and woman are facing multiple drug-related charges, including drug trafficking and possession of a weapon.

Regina police investigating after Montague Street house shot at several times

Dejan Vuckovic, 47, and Meriah Valentine Bellegarde, 27, were arrested during a traffic stop in the area of the 1100 block of Elliot Street Sunday afternoon.

The Regina Police Service found a loaded firearm, ammunition and a large amount of cash, along with meth, cocaine, hydromorphine and ecstasy.

Other charges include careless use of a firearm and failing to comply with probation order.

WATCH: Firearms, drugs, cash seized from Alberta home and storage unit

Regina police on scene investigating possible shooting on Boswell Crescent

Vuckovic and Bellegarde made their first appearance in court Monday morning


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Il faut rendre la possession de robots tueurs immorale, estime Yoshua Bengio


Dans une entrevue accordée au magazine MIT Technology Review, M. Bengio s’est fermement opposé à l’utilisation de l’IA par les militaires, et plus précisément à la création de robots capables de prendre la décision de tuer.

« Je pense qu’il faut rendre la possession de robots tueurs immorale, a-t-il affirmé au magazine américain. Il faut changer la culture, et cela comprend de changer des lois et des traités. »

Yoshua Bengio admet toutefois qu’il ne croit pas qu’il sera possible de complètement empêcher le développement d’armes autonomes, en partie parce que certains pays pourraient être tentés de contourner d’éventuelles lois internationales.

« Je réponds que, premièrement, nous voulons qu’ils se sentent coupables de le faire, et que, deuxièmement, rien ne nous empêche de mettre au point de la technologie défensive, explique M. Bengio. Il y a une grosse différence entre les armes défensives qui peuvent détruire des drones et des armes offensives qui ciblent des humains. Les deux peuvent utiliser l’IA. »

Je ne fais pas entièrement confiance aux organisations militaires, parce qu’elles ont tendance à préférer le devoir à la moralité. J’aimerais que ce soit différent.

Yoshua Bengio, titulaire de la Chaire de recherche du Canada en algorithmes d’apprentissage statistique et pionnier de l’apprentissage profond

Des centaines de chercheurs, dont de nombreux Canadiens, y compris Yoshua Bengio, ont d’ailleurs signé un manifeste en juillet dernier dans lequel ils s’engagent à ne pas participer à la création d’armes létales autonomes.

Quelques mois plus tôt, des milliers d’employés de Google avaient dénoncé publiquement un contrat entre leur employeur et les militaires américains pour la conception de systèmes d’intelligence artificielle capables d’analyser des vidéos captées par des drones.

Déséquilibre entre les pays

Cet éminent expert voit d’ailleurs d’un mauvais œil la compétition entre les pays pour la conception d’algorithmes de plus en plus puissants. Selon lui, il serait préférable que les États et les chercheurs collaborent davantage au lieu de compétitionner.

« Nous devrions faciliter la venue des personnes provenant des pays en développement, croit Yoshua Bengio. En Europe, aux États-Unis ou au Canada, c’est très difficile pour un chercheur africain d’obtenir un visa. C’est complètement injuste. C’est déjà difficile pour eux de faire de la recherche avec peu de ressources, mais si en plus ils ne peuvent pas avoir accès à la communauté [des chercheurs], je pense que c’est vraiment injuste. »

M. Bengio souligne d’ailleurs que le congrès ICLR, qui réunit chaque année des chercheurs du monde entier, se tiendra en Afrique en 2020, précisément pour contribuer à rétablir cet équilibre.


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Ottawa moves to pardon Canadians convicted of pot possession as legalization takes effect


OTTAWA—Ottawa will move to pardon those with past convictions for pot possession as Canadians wake up Wednesday to a new weed regime.

As Canada becomes the second nation in the world to legalize the recreational use of marijuana, the federal government will announce Wednesday that it intends to move quickly to grant pardons to Canadians with past criminal convictions for simple possession of pot under 30 grams, a senior official told the Star.

The exact details of how Canadians can apply for pardons will be announced in the near future, said the official, who spoke on background in advance of the official announcement.

“For people to whom this applies in their past, we’re going to give them certainty that there will be recourse for them … in terms of exactly how it gets rolled out, the steps that we take, how much time it will take them, we’ll lay that out in the coming days and weeks,” the official said.

The lead ministers on the cannabis file — Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale, Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould, Health Minister Ginette Petitpas Taylor and Bill Blair, minister of border security and organized crime reduction — will speak to reporters Wednesday morning.

“Canadians continue to have difficulties with employment, rentals and travelling. These barriers are felt even more by marginalized communities including Indigenous peoples,” NDP MP Rachel Blaney (North Island—Powell River) said in question period Tuesday.

Blair, a former Toronto police chief, signalled Tuesday that the government had been waiting for legalization before announcing its next steps.

“We understand the impact that those criminal records have had on people,” Blair said. “At that point in time, we’ll have the opportunity to deal with those records in an appropriate way.”

Legalization, a key plank in the Liberals’ campaign in the 2015 election, is a revolution that’s been years in the making.

And it may be a few days yet before the effects of the relaxed cannabis laws start to be seen — and smelt. That’s because in Ontario at least, storefront locations selling cannabis won’t open until April so for now residents will have to order it on-line for delivery by Canada Post. Postal workers Tuesday announced rotating strikes starting next Monday, which could snarl pot deliveries.

The legalization of cannabis has social and legal implications and for the Liberals, potential political peril if it goes awry with the next federal election now less than a year away.

Liberals privately concede that the year ahead is full of unknowns. How many Canadians will want to try cannabis now that it’s legal? Will legalization truly undercut the black market for marijuana, one of the stated goals for the endeavour? What will be the impact on young people?

On the eve of legalization, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his cabinet ministers were quick to tout their rationale for the move, “to protect our kids and to keep the profits out of the pockets of organized crime.

“By controlling it, by legalizing it, we’re going to make it more difficult for young people to access and we’re going to ensure that criminal organizations and street gangs don’t make millions, billions of dollars of profits every year,” Trudeau said Tuesday as he headed into a cabinet meeting on Parliament Hill.

But some are already sounding the alarm. Ontario Premier Doug Ford accused Trudeau of “rushing legal cannabis out of the door” before police have a reliable machine to test for drug-impaired driving.

In a Monday editorial, the Canadian Medical Association Journal cautioned what it called a “national, uncontrolled experiment in which the profits of cannabis producers and tax revenues are squarely pitched against the health of Canadians.”

“I think there’s going to be a lot of unintended consequences that have not been properly thought through,” said Conservative MP Tony Clement (Parry Sound—Muskoka).

“I know that a lot of people psychologically may be ready for legalization. I get that. It doesn’t mean that all of the wheels of justice and of protection of society are in place,” said Clement.

He accused the Liberals of over promising in their vows to cut organized crime, protect children and ensure the readiness of front-line police officers. “I don’t want the public to be fooled into thinking that everything is taken care of,” he said.

But Blair said the federal government has worked with provinces, police forces and other stakeholders to ensure a “strong regulatory framework” is in place for the legal sale of weed.

“For the first time starting (Wednesday) there will be competition in the marketplace and for adult consumers who choose to use cannabis, they will have a socially responsible, safer and legal choice,” said Blair (Scarborough Southwest).

“There’s still a great deal of work to do and to make sure that we achieve our objectives of protecting our kids, displacing that illicit market. That work will continue apace,” he said.

That work — involving several hundred people hired to help administer and enforce the new pot regime, also includes gathering data and educating the public.

Starting Wednesday a new volley of ads will begin about the health risks, targeting parents and young people. And it has promised millions for public health education campaigns.

The advertising started to roll out on 2017 with advertising initially aimed at parents, to guide conversations with children about the risks of pot. A federal official said it then shifted to educating about the road safety risks of using cannabis, before shifting to travel advisories and border issues.

The 2017 budget allocated $46 million and the 2018 budget set aside $82 million over five years for health education ($62.5 million for community-based health promotion, and $20 million for the Mental Health Commission and the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse).

As well, Blair said work continues among federal departments towards the legalization of the sale of edibles, which he said could take another year.

In question period, Clement pressed the government on whether police forces across the country are ready to enforce impaired driving laws.

But one government official told the Star Tuesday that police officers and the courts have been enforcing drug impaired driving offences for decades. “They are well-versed in driving impaired cases. It’s not new,” said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

Police officers who suspect drivers of impaired while under the influence of cannabis will rely on field sobriety tests and in some cases, oral fluid samples. If officers have reasonable grounds to believe a driver is over the legal limit, a 12-step process known as the drug recognition evaluation is done to determine the degree of impairment and the likely drug.

The rate of drug impaired driving was on the rise even before legalization, jumping 10 per cent in 2017 while alcohol-impaired driving offences reported by police declined by 5 per cent, according to Statistics Canada.

Drug impaired driving remained low compared to drinking and driving but federal officials say they are worried that younger people in particular “aren’t quite getting the message” about the risks of driving after consuming cannabis.

Files by Tonda MacCharles and Rob Ferguson

Bruce Campion-Smith is an Ottawa-based reporter covering national politics. Follow him on Twitter: @yowflier


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Cannabis IQ: Possession amnesty debated, buzzkill in Quebec and more – National


Here’s what we learned this week:

What will happen to the half-million Canadians who have criminal records for marijuana-related offences?

The federal government has hedged, half-promising some kind of amnesty.

“We’ll take steps to look at what we can do for those folks who have criminal records for something that would no longer be criminal,” prime minister Justin Trudeau said last year. “We will move forward in a thoughtful way on fixing past wrongs that happened because of this erroneous law that I didn’t put in place and that I’m working hard to fix.”

WATCH: Trudeau discusses amnesty for marijuana possession

Until this week, though, nothing resembling an actual bill had appeared in the Commons.

But on Thursday, Victoria NDP MP Murray Rankin introduced a private member’s bill that would “expunge” (or erase) records of people who have been convicted of simple possession of marijuana (ie. quantities for person use, not trafficking.)

Victoria MP calls on federal government to expunge criminal records for minor cannabis possession

“People tell me they can’t coach their kids’ soccer team or chaperone a school trip all because they have criminal record for possession of a small level of cannabis,” Rankin said

The process would be free, unlike a pardon application, which costs $631.

It’s more complicated than it sounds, though. As we reported last year, Canada’s national criminal database can’t clearly break out people with a record for possession of marijuana from other drug possession offences, so an amnesty will be a labour-intensive, one-by-one process. 

Why a Canadian marijuana possession amnesty is harder to implement than it sounds

WATCH: Newly-elected CAQ MNA Geneviève Guilbault says the party has been clear that the legal age for marijuana should be 21 – and not 18.

In brief:

  • François Legault, Quebec’s incoming premier, says he’ll follow through on a campaign promise to raise the province’s minimum age to buy and possess cannabis from 18 to 21.  Coming just 11 days before legalization, the move would need a last-minute legislative change to take effect. The change would move Quebec from having one of the lowest cannabis ages in the country to the highest — the minimum age will be 19 in most provinces. Is it practical at this point?
  • Also in Quebec: Many municipalities, like Quebec City and Lévis, are banning public consumption. (As happened in Halifax, several local councils in Quebec started out debating a cannabis bylaw and ended up with sweeping restrictions on tobacco as well.)
  • Transport minister Marc Garneau confirms that Canadians will be able to take up to 30 grams of cannabis with them on domestic flights. (This is sometimes described as a “small amount,” but really isn’t.) Why would you want to? Well, provincial laws typically don’t allow residents to order pot from outside the province, but will allow them to bring it with themOne thing you must absolutely never do, though, it take your pot on an international flight. Signs reminding travellers of this are appearing in airports across the country, and Vancouver’s says it may install an amnesty box
  • Alberta will have 17 bricks-and-mortar cannabis stores opening on the morning of October 17: six in Edmonton, three in Medicine Hat and two in Calgary. Over the nest year, that’s expected to expand to a network of 250 stores.
  • Nova Scotia’s only standalone cannabis store unveiled its sign this week in Halifax.
  • Remember the Toronto company that wanted to hire people to test marijuana for $50 an hour? Ten days after the posting went up, they have almost 20,000 applications.
  • New cannabis users under legalization will be risk-averse, middle-aged and interested in low-dose products, Deloitte predicts. (Microdosing has been popular in U.S. states that have legalized. That market included, we were told, included “moms with young children at home … looking to take the edge off.“)
  • New Brunswick’s local governments want 44 per cent of provincial cannabis revenue, but there’s no deal in place, along with no clarity about who will form the provincial government.

WATCH: New Brunswick municipalities grapple with marijuana legalization

You wanted to know:

  • How is the Ontario government going to safeguard the personal information it collects on its online ordering and delivery system until a brick and mortar store can open in April 2019? Second, who will have access to this information? Will U.S. Customs?

The question mentions Ontario, but the answer applies to all eight provinces, plus the Northwest Territories and Yukon, which will have a government-run online retail system (all of them except Manitoba and Saskatchewan).

The provinces have been very conscientious about making sure their ordering information (goods X have been paid for and should be shipped to customer Y at address  Z) will be processed in Canada and not retained after it’s needed. IDs will be checked at the door, but no record will be kept of the customer’s identity.

The more difficult problem is the credit card data that’s created as part of an online transaction. Your credit card data is held on servers in the United States, where your data has no legal protection. The provinces have addressed this in different ways — Alberta and Nova Scotia may have the best solution, entering the transaction in such a way that it doesn’t clearly relate to cannabis. Nova Scotia cannabis purchases, for example, will be identified as ‘NSLC,’ the acronym of the province’s liquor stores.

Ontario and B.C. say they have a solution, but we haven’t seen it yet and they won’t say what it is. Quebec cannabis sales will be identified as SQDC, for the Société québécoise du cannabis.

Will your cannabis credit card purchases be visible to U.S. border officials? (Some might, some won’t.)

  • What’s the date for cannabis edibles/drinkables to be made available?

There’s been quite a lot of confusion about this.

Edibles that are pre-made as food products (everybody likes to talk about gummy bears) won’t be seen until some time next year, when the feds have had more time to write regulations.

However, cannabis-infused oils (in all provinces) and gel caps (in most provinces, that we’ve found) will be for sale on Day 1. So if you want a cannabis pumpkin spice latte, you couldbuy a pumpkin spice latte and drop some cannabis oil in it.

A caution, though — pay very careful attention to dosing. The oils that will be for sale are very concentrated products. A 90 ml bottle of oil will contain most of a year’s worth of daily microdoses.

Gel caps take a lot of the guesswork out of the process. Standard sizes will include 2.5 mg — more of a microdose — and 10mg. (They won’t be as nice as the high-end chocolate versions available in some U.S. states — the experience will be more … pharmaceutical — but will have the same effect.)

Powerful cannabis oils don’t involve smoking, but are ‘much trickier’ to get right

  • Just wondering what the laws will be in regards to selling marijuana clones (live plants) to the public?

As far as the federal Cannabis Act is concerned, you’ll be able to buy live marijuana plants (no more than four per household) on the morning of Oct. 17.

The problem will be finding someone to sell them to you. Storing dried flower and gel caps is a fairly simple problem — caring for live plants is a more complicated one, and one that cannabis retailers seem to want to avoid, at least at first.

Given all the complexities of the early stages of legalization, it’s hard to blame them. (Seeds will be available in some provinces.)

In provinces with private-sector retail, it wouldn’t be surprising if some stores specialized in being cannabis nurseries as time goes on.

You can buy live pot plants when they’re legal — at least in theory

Send us your questions



© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.


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Killer Paul Bernardo in court for weapons possession charge


NAPANEE, ONT.—Notorious killer and serial rapist Paul Bernardo is due in an eastern Ontario courtroom today for his trial on a weapons possession charge.

Authorities accuse the maximum-security inmate of possessing a “shank” — consisting of a screw with a pen as a handle — in prison in February.

The 54-year-old Bernardo had said he wanted to get the trial done before a parole hearing scheduled for later this month.

His lawyer says his client is presumed innocent and will be acquitted.

Also known as the “Scarborough rapist,” Bernardo was convicted in 1995 of the first-degree murders of two teen girls and numerous sexual assaults. He was labelled a dangerous offender and was not to be eligible for parole until he had served 25 years since his arrest in southern Ontario in early 1993.

Bernardo’s sadistic sex crimes, some of which he videotaped, sparked terror and revulsion. He kidnapped, tortured and killed Leslie Mahaffy, 14, of Burlington, Ont., in June 1991 at his home in Port Dalhousie, Ont., before dismembering her body, encasing her remains in cement and discarding them in a nearby lake. He tortured and killed Kristen French, 15, of St. Catharines, Ont., in April 1992 after keeping her captive for three days.

Bernardo’s then-wife, Karla Homolka, was complicit in his crimes. In return for testifying against him, she served 12 years until 2005 after pleading guilty to manslaughter in what critics at the time branded as a “deal with the devil.” Homolka is now a mother herself, and last year it was revealed she had been volunteering at a Montreal-area elementary school, prompting it to revise its policies.

Bernardo, who admitted to raping 14 other women, was later convicted of manslaughter in the December 1990 death of Homolka’s younger sister, Tammy. The 15-year-old girl died after the pair drugged her and sexually assaulted her while she was unconscious. Homolka would later say she wanted to give Tammy’s virginity to Bernardo for Christmas.

Read more:

Woman who sent love letters to Paul Bernardo arrested for breaching condition on contact with minors


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