Recent Articles

Recent Comments

« | Main | »

Seized Home To Be Sold

By Hempology | June 12, 2006


A Supreme Court judge has ruled that a Port Moody home seized by police after a marijuana grow op was found inside can be sold by a mortgage lender.

The Controlled Drugs and Substances Act allows the attorney general to take a property from an accused and ensure that the accused has no further interest in the property.

However, B.C. Supreme Court Justice Donald Brenner said that an innocent third party, such as a lender, should not be penalized in the process.

On Feb. 8, 2004, Port Moody police discovered a marijuana grow operation at 200 Moray St. and seized more than 600 plants worth approximately $300,000.

The owner of the house, Silja Siu Fun Leung, was charged 20 days later with unlawfully producing a controlled substance and possessing a controlled substance for the purpose of trafficking.

In addition to laying charges against Leung, the attorney general got an order restraining and managing the Leung property as “offence-related property.” The order prohibited Leung from selling, or otherwise dealing with, the property.

In the event of a conviction, the attorney general would have applied to the sentencing court for forfeiture of the properties.

Scotia Mortgage Corp., the lender, applied for an order allowing it to sell the property to get back what is still owed on the mortgage.

Although the attorney general opposed the order, Brenner said it was unfair that an innocent lender with no knowledge of the goings-on at the property would be prevented from being repaid until after a criminal trial.

“Criminal proceedings in Canada can take an inordinate length of time,” Brenner said. “In the type of case in which a forfeiture order is likely to be sought, the time between the charge and the ultimate disposition is usually measured in years.

“While large financial institutions may well be able to bear the financial consequences of being kept out of their money for a period of many years, not all mortgage financing is provided by such institutions.”

The amount remaining after Scotia Mortgage Corp. has taken its share will be paid into court and stand in place of the property.

On Oct. 10, 2005, the property was appraised at $425,000. The property has been assessed by the B.C. Assessment Authority at $430,000. As of Aug. 25, 2005, there was $258,000 outstanding on the mortgage.

Topics: Articles | Comments Off

Comments are closed.