North Island Compassion Club manager Ernie Yacub has been evicted from the club’s premises at Sixth Street in Courtenay — where he had lived until Monday — following a dispute resolution hearing involving landlord Bob Huddart and an adjudicator from the Residential Tenancy Branch.
The lawful cause behind his eviction was the summer bust that occurred at the club when police seized several pounds of marijuana and arrested Yacub. Police had also raided the premises in February and arrested four people.
“The adjudicator agreed with the landlord that was lawful cause, even though we had stopped dispensing (cannabis) after the second bust,” Yacub said.
The club had sold medicinal marijuana and other medications such as cannabis-infused oil to help people who live with the pain of cancer and other ailments. It also acts as a support service where clients can receive guidance and companionship.
The original eviction included Yacub and his three roommates, “even though they had nothing to do with the Compassion Club,” said Yacub, who has moved to 420 Cumberland Rd. for the time being.
“He wasn’t in good standing with the police, neighbours or the city,” said Huddart, who decided not to evict the other three, especially with winter around the corner. He suggested, however, they find other lodgings come spring.
“They’re welcome to stay for the short-term but I’ve told them the eviction was to get the place cleaned up and to restore my good name.”
Huddart said he evicted Yacub after being called into an RCMP interrogation room, where he was told the paperwork had been started to seize the house. Police, however, put a pause on the seizure.
“One more illegal drug-dealing activity and they would confiscate my house, under the proceeds of crime legislation,” said Huddart, noting police have been receiving complaints about the house for several years.
“I’ve been sticking up for him (Yacub) against the city, neighbours and police, but it hasn’t been a situation that I’m comfortable with,” Huddart said.
Yacub said the club will continue to provide medicine by way of a delivery service to about 50 its previous 200 members.
“And also we’re providing to people who have their medical marijuana cards, who are legally allowed to have marijuana,” he said. “If they can’t grow their own, we are the only people in town who can provide a variety of cannabis, and also edibles.”