In 2012, retired steelworker Gerard Comeau was charged with a $292.50 ticket for carrying 14 cases of beer and 3 bottles of liquor from quebec, back to his home in New Brunswick.
His seemingly simple case led to a provincial court declaring the liquor control act's restriction unconstitutional because Section 121 of the 1867 Constitution Act says products from any province "shall … be admitted free into each of the other provinces."
New Brunswick's Liquor Control Act sets a personal importation limit of 12 pints of beer or one bottle of liquor or wine. In May of this year, the Supreme Court agreed to hear the appeal and the New Brunswick government was ordered to pay for the costs of Comeau's legal fees.
The Supreme Court's decision could an effect on "literally hundreds" of interprovincial trade barriers across the country, according to the executive director of the Canadian Constitution Foundation who are providing his legal services.
"Anything where provinces erect, deliberately erect, systems to keep competitive goods out from other provinces — this would, if not eliminate those, at least shake the foundations on which they are built," said Howard Anglin.
28 corporations have sought to intervene in the case on behalf of various parties, including Cannabis Culture.
Jodie Emery of Cannabis Culture was quoted 'The legalization of cannabis and the emergence of an entirely new industry are precisely the type of sea change which needs to be heard in this case because of the effects inter-provincial trade barriers have on the extant and emergent cannabis industry.'
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