A conviction for possession of even a small amount of a controlled substance can be a particular concern for Canadians, given that many of us are desirous of travelling to or through our friendly neighbour to the south, the United States of America.
However, the folks at the US Customs and Border Protection (who seem to have direct access to the criminal record database, maintained by the RCMP) have adopted a policy that amounts to “zero tolerance” for any Canadian with any sort of drug conviction (even if it was a $50.00 fine for one joint 20 years ago), meaning that you will be denied entry at the US border, unless and until you apply for and are granted “advance permission to enter as a non-immigrant”. Of course, there are many other significant negative consequences that can arise from a drug conviction.
As such, it pays to have your drug case looked at by an experienced criminal defence lawyer. These cases can be complex, involving issues relating to search and seizure, issuance of warrants to search, proof of possession, proof of the nature of the substance in question, and potential Charter violations. Our lawyers would be happy to arrange a no-cost initial interview to take a look at your situation. We can also assist with your application for advance permission to enter the USA as a non-immigrant (often referred to as a “waiver application”).