November 25, 2008
More than a dozen people chanted and waved flags at a small rally pushing for the legalization of marijuana this morning, organized after police raided a pot-friendly downtown Toronto cafe allegedly selling laced drinks and treats to customers.
"We are here, we are high. Get used to it," one man shouted into a megaphone decorated in fake marijuana leaves, while others held up flags adorned with marijuana symbols.
At least one person smoked a joint while attending the rally on the steps of Old City Hall.
Two employees of the Kindred Cafe, near the corner of Wellesley and Yonge streets, were charged with trafficking marijuana last week after undercover officers say they purchased hot chocolates, milkshakes and baked goods laced with marijuana. Dominic Cramer, the cafe's owner, faces trafficking-related charges and is expected to turn himself into police later today.
Chad Cooke, a spokesperson for the Kindred Cafe, said Mr. Cramer will be held overnight and will attend a bail hearing tomorrow morning.
Mr. Cramer, a self-described entrepreneur, activist and philanthropist, owns several downtown cannabis culture shops within a several-block radius and has never been charged with a crime in the past.
The Kindred Cafe openly allows dues-paying members to smoke marijuana in certain areas of the three-storey restaurant, but Mr. Cooke says the cafe never sells pot.
"That's illegal, that's trafficking," he said.