Legal pot could slow border crossings, former U.S. diplomat warns

Former U.S. ambassador Bruce Heyman speaks to Evan Solomon, host of CTV’s Question Period. (CTV)

By Laura Payton, Ottawa News Bureau Online Producer, May 7, 2017 

OTTAWA — The former U.S. ambassador to Canada warns the new marijuana law could effectively thicken the border as sniffer dogs trigger searches for marijuana that’s illegal in the United States, but legal in Canada.

Bruce Heyman, who served as U.S. ambassador in Ottawa under former president Barack Obama, says he looked into how legal marijuana could impact the border.

Heyman was envoy from April, 2014 until January, 2017, as the then-opposition Liberals promised to legalize marijuana and promised in the first year of their government to carry through with the pledge. Heyman says, when he spoke to American border officials at the time, they raised the issue of how sniffer dogs at the border would handle the smell of pot.

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