The province is asking the courts for permission to seize property and money associated with Squamish’s first cannabis dispensary.
On Jan. 31, the director of civil forfeiture filed a lawsuit in the Victoria courts against Bryan Trevor Raiser, the owner of 99 North Cannabis Dispensary.
It also names a numbered corporation, 1113375 B.C. Ltd. Raiser is identified as the sole director, officer and controlling mind of that corporation.
“99 North is an illegal cannabis retailer,” the claim reads. “Neither of the defendants have licences to distribute or sell marijuana or cannabis to any person or entity.”
The dispensary was shut down in November 2019 after officers from the Community Safety Unit, or CSU, seized product from the store and ordered it to be closed. The CSU is the arm of the province that enforces cannabis regulations. RCMP were also present at the time.
This occurred after 99 North was informed twice that its operations were illegal, the claim says.
The director is seeking to obtain $4,296 in cash, which was taken by RCMP during the seizure in November.
The director is also trying to claim land and a house residing on Second Avenue owned by Raiser’s numbered company.
According to BC Assessment, the land and the house are collectively valued at $634,000.
The notice of claim says that Raiser’s numbered company became the registered owner of the house and land in October 2017. The dispensary opened in 2015, according to past reports from The Chief.
The land and house being sought by the province are not where 99 North was located. They are also different from Raiser’s last known Squamish address identified in the claim.
In the claim, the director alleges that the property, the land and the money are “proceeds and instruments of unlawful activity” and should therefore be claimed by the province.
“The director may apply to the court for an order forfeiting to the government property that is an instrument of unlawful activity,” reads the claim.
“By converting the proceeds of the unlawful activity into the property and money, the property and money were used by the defendants as instruments of unlawful activity, namely the laundering of proceeds of crime,” reads the claim.
No statements of response had been filed in court by Raiser by press deadline.
When approached for comment, Raiser told The Chief he would be unable to comment.
None of the claims have been proven in court.
In a separate case, the province has also been trying to seize property associated with another Squamish dispensary, Grass Roots Medicinal Cannabis. That store was also shut down by authorities the same day officers forced 99 North to close.
The province has been alleging that Grass Roots is an “unlawful” dispensary.
The claims against Grass Roots have not been proven in court.
**Please note, this story has been modified since it was first published to address a privacy concern.