Two Yarmouth men were acquitted last week on changes of possessing drugs for the purpose of trafficking.
Laird James MacIsaac and Derald Anthony Jacquard were charged in connection with a drug bust on Oct. 26, 2007 at a residence on Porter Street that netted more than 18,000 ecstasy tablets.
Phil Star, who represented MacIsaac on the matter, said the court's conclusion following the two-day Supreme Court trail was that there wasn't sufficient proof against his client.
“At the end of the case, the court ruled they had a circumstantial case only,” said Star. It was the crown’s hope that inference could be drawn to gain a conviction.
“There was a reasonable doubt for the judge; they didn’t prove possession (of the drugs),” said Star.
The facts of the case show what was determined to be a suspicious package from British Columbia addressed to Jacquard was intercepted at the Halifax airport. Upon further examination, the package was found to contain illegal drugs. The RCMP were contacted and they assumed possession of the package.
Using an undercover police agent posing as a postal worker, the package was delivered as addressed to 35 Porter St., but most of the drugs were removed and replaced with a device that would simulate the weight of 18,188 ecstasy tablets and notify police when the package was opened.
Not long after the package was delivered to Jacquard, MacIsaac arrived at the scene. Shortly after that, the sensor went off indicating the package was opened.
However, upon entering 35 Porter St., one half of a duplex, no drugs were found. Police then used a common entrance in the building’s basement to gain access to 37 Porter St., for which they did not have a warrant.
It was there they found MacIsaac in a bathroom and several envelops from the package on a shelf in the bathroom. At the same time, Jacquard was found leaving the building through a back entrance.
In his decision, Justice David P. S. Farrar said in the matter of Jacquard, “the evidence, at best, is suspicious, but that is not enough to find guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.”
Farrar noted that a connection could not be proven between either MacIsaac or Jacquard and the party who sent the package from B. C. and there was no evidence to prove how the package made it from 35 Porter St. to 37 Porter St. or that Jacquard knew what was in the package when he accepted it.
As for MacIsaac, Justice Farrar said all that could be proven was that he arrived at the location shortly after the package was delivered and that he was later found near the package, “far short” of what is necessary to prove guilt, he said.
PLEASE NOTE: THE VERSION OF THIS STORY THAT APPEARS IN THE JAN. 19 PRINT EDITION OF THE VANGUARD CONTAINS INACCURATE INFORMATION. THIS STORY HAS BEEN CORRECTED TO REFLECT THOSE MISTAKES.
By Michael Gorman
January 19th 2010, 11:22
comment: I would swear I had posted the story of the bust previously but a couple searches failed to turn it up. :s