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"Potentially thousands of children and young people are being trafficked from Vietnam and exploited by ruthless criminal gangs."

August 21, 2018  

Experts warned Monday that large numbers of child slaves may be working on cannabis farms in London.

Since 2016, authorities have found 314 illegal cannabis farms in London, according to police data. The most alarming figures, however, come via human trafficking experts, who warn that the number of children used as slave labor on these farms is likely in the thousands.

"Experts say children are being trafficked from Vietnam and other countries to work in these farms, which are often located in residential properties, and that the scale of the problem has been vastly underestimated," Reuters reports.

The Australian human rights group, Walk Free, claims that Britain is home to 136,000 slaves. Last year, more than 2,000 child trafficking victims were reportedly referred to British authorities, the highest number on record, the group says.

"The high number of cannabis farms across London and trafficking of Vietnamese children to work in them is extremely worrying," said Jakub Sobik, a spokesman for Anti-Slavery International. "Potentially thousands of children and young people are being trafficked from Vietnam and exploited by ruthless criminal gangs."

In February, the British government came under fire for refusing asylum to an orphan from Vietnam who was trafficked to work in the cannabis industry.

"It is vital that these children are seen by police as victims first and foremost and given proper support, as too often they are treated as criminals instead," Catherine Baker, a police officer at the anti-child trafficking organization ECPAT UK, told Reuters. "These vulnerable children are exploited in extremely dangerous conditions, with little or no pay and may be physically and psychologically abused by their traffickers."

For complete story 

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"He had eaten a [cannabis] edible and just couldn't handle it," MacIntosh said.

Cannabis overdoses are something he said he's personally witnessed at the bar three times in the past year.

That mirrors a trend happening across the country — as the Oct. 17 date for legalization of recreational pot looms, CBC News has learned that cannabis-related emergency room visits have spiked.

Data from the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI) shows that over the past three years the number of emergency room visits because of cannabis overdoses in Ontario has almost tripled — from 449 in 2013-14, to nearly 1,500 in 2017-18.

In Alberta, the number has nearly doubled over the same timeframe, from 431 to 832.

Symptoms of cannabis overdose — or more precisely, THC poisoning, THC being the main psychoactive chemical in pot — include elevated heart rate and blood pressure, anxiety, vomiting and in some cases psychosis, possibly necessitating hospitalization.

Symptoms of cannabis overdose — or more precisely, THC poisoning, THC being the main psychoactive chemical in pot — include elevated heart rate and blood pressure, anxiety, vomiting and in some cases psychosis, possibly necessitating hospitalization.

Outside of Alberta and Ontario, the statistics on cannabis overdoses are sparse. But the CIHI figures that are available for other reporting jurisdictions, which include small samples from health centres in Nova Scotia, P.E.I., Yukon, Manitoba and Saskatchewan, show Canadians in some regions are being sent to a hospital because of pot at four times the rate they were in 2013.

"That's just the tip of the iceberg," said Heather Hudson at the Ontario Poison Centre at SickKids children's hospital in Toronto, pointing to a rise in the number of cases involving children and cannabis.

"We are certainly getting more calls about children who are being exposed unintentionally," she said.

For complete article go to ‘Who said WEED was Harmless??

 

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After calls for cannabis to be legalised in the UK police chiefs in Los Angeles - the state’s largest legal weed market - say there’s been a rise in illegal cannabis market even though recreational marijuana was legalised back in January….

But there are hundreds of illegal cannabis stores where customers can buy the drug at cheaper prices than at the heavily regulated and taxed legal dispensaries. 

California regulators sent out almost 1,000 cease and desist letters to marijuana businesses they suspected were illegal in April alone.

And in May 142 people were charged in a massive crackdown on the illegal shops. 

Lt Spell, who oversees the division's cannabis unit, said there had been much more "illicit activity" in the past few months.

And he said one of the biggest falsehoods about legalising marijuana is that it will curb illegal activities.

He told Sun Online: “Here in Los Angeles we see a large number of illegal retail stores.

“But we also come across a lot of illegal grows - places where people are growing the cannabis.

“And oftentimes it's to export out of state into places where it’s still illegal because the marijuana that might cost, let's say $3,000-a-pound here, may cost as much as $4,000- to $6,000-a-pound somewhere else.

“Probably one of the biggest fallacies about the regulation or the legalisation of recreational marijuana is that the illegal activities will go away when in fact, when you look at all of the states - and we've done comparative analysis with other places - all of the places that have allowed recreational marijuana, have seen increases in the illegal activities.

For Complete article

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  • Sean Ziemelis, 31, attacked a seven-month-old baby at a flat in Luton last year 
  • A court heard he was high on cannabis when he threw the child out a window
  • He also threw the child's mother out of a window. Both escaped major injury

Mr Lofthouse said there were concerns about Ziemelis' behaviour after he had taken cannabis the previous night. He had been discovered with his genitals out while on top of a dog in an alleyway.

Then at 2am on August 1 last year the child's mother found him with his thumbs in the eyes of the baby. When she screamed for help he started to strangle the boy.

Ziemelis produced a green-handled knife and when he was hit with a piece of wood by the grandmother of the little boy he threw that woman across the room before punching the mother until she fell in and out of consciousness.

The prosecutor went on: 'He picked up (the boy) and dangled him out of window of first floor flat for a couple of minutes. A crowd had gathered because of the commotion. People were shouting not to hurt the baby.

'He threw the baby to the left, away from the people as if he did not want them to catch him, but he was caught.'

Ziemelis then bit the mother's toe before throwing her out of the window. Her fall was broken because the onlookers had placed bins underneath the window. She suffered cuts, bruises and a loose tooth.

The police arrived and found him on his back wearing only a pair of shorts, covered in blood. He said: 'I feel broken all over.' He said he did not remember throwing either the baby or woman out of the window. Asked what would happen if a baby was thrown out of a window he said: 'They would die.'

His blood was tested and it indicated he was a heavy cannabis user…He said he had 'displayed psychotic symptoms and episodes due to cannabis misuse.'

The judge went on: 'I do not need a professional to tell me you are dangerous. Anyone who could do that to a child is dangerous. The appropriate sentence is life imprisonment. Any other sentence would not be adequate to reflect what happened.'

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