“I knew noth­ing.”

At­tor­ney Gen­er­al Faris Al-Rawi yes­ter­day said he was in the dark about months-old com­pa­ny West In­di­an Cannabis Com­pa­ny Lim­it­ed, a re­tail firm whose di­rec­tor is fam­i­ly to his wife.

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So­cial me­dia was busy yes­ter­day shar­ing a high­light­ed copy of the com­pa­ny reg­is­tra­tion doc­u­ments. Large red cir­cles high­light­ed that one of the di­rec­tors had the same sur­name of Al-Rawi’s wife.

How­ev­er, the own­er of the West In­di­an Cannabis Com­pa­ny Ltd (Wican­na­co), Christo­pher Moses, yes­ter­day de­nied his com­pa­ny had any­thing to do with mar­i­jua­na, de­spite its com­pa­ny name and the brand­ing on its cloth­ing.

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Moses is mar­ried to Jen­na Marie Na­hous—who is al­so list­ed as a di­rec­tor—who is re­lat­ed to Mona Na­hous, wife of At­tor­ney Gen­er­al Al-Rawi.

In a state­ment post­ed on his Face­book page last night, how­ev­er, Moses al­so­de­nied hav­ing any in­ter­ac­tion with the At­tor­ney Gen­er­al.

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“I cat­e­gor­i­cal­ly state that I have no busi­ness deal­ings with Faris Al-Rawi what­so­ev­er. I do not, nor did I dis­cuss my busi­ness with him, as I have NO fi­nan­cial re­la­tion­ship with him. I do not poss­es any in­side in­for­ma­tion per­tain­ing to the cannabis in­dus­try as it comes to the fore in T&T and re­gion wide,” Moses said as he re­spond­ed to al­le­ga­tions that he may have had pri­or knowl­edge of the pend­ing leg­is­la­tion which will de­crim­i­nalise mar­i­jua­na us­age in T&T.

In an in­ter­view, Moses told Guardian Me­dia that Wican­na­co was just a cloth­ing com­pa­ny us­ing mar­i­jua­na sym­bols for brand­ing. He added, how­ev­er, that due to the new­found pop­u­lar­i­ty on so­cial me­dia, he was plan­ning to jump in­to le­gal cannabis re­tail when­ev­er the bill was passed.

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Attorney General Faris Al-Rawi.

Attorney General Faris Al-Rawi.

Abraham-Diaz

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But af­ter fur­ther dis­cus­sions with his wife in the wake of the so­cial me­dia furore cre­at­ed over the past hours, Moses told the Guardian they had de­cid­ed to “stay in our lane”.

“We have de­cid­ed to stick to what we know. We had and have no in­ten­tion of get­ting in­to the space be­yond ap­par­el,” Moses said.

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The com­pa­ny’s web­site states that it sells mer­chan­dise and cloth­ing with mar­i­jua­na sym­bols.

Al­though Moses said it was on­ly an ap­par­el and mer­chan­dise com­pa­ny, the reg­is­tra­tion doc­u­ments are broad­er and just lists the com­pa­ny as a re­tail com­pa­ny.

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Moses con­firmed that he was on­ly now con­sid­er­ing get­ting in­to the le­gal mar­i­jua­na in­dus­try not on­ly in T&T but al­so up the is­lands.

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In an in­ter­view with Guardian Me­dia yes­ter­day, Al-Rawi said he re­ceived the com­pa­ny reg­is­tra­tion doc­u­ments from the me­dia yes­ter­day and knew noth­ing of the com­pa­ny or the fact that it was reg­is­tered on­ly months ago in Feb­ru­ary.

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Hours af­ter learn­ing of the link, how­ev­er, Al-Rawi said he con­tact­ed his wife’s rel­a­tive and learned the com­pa­ny sold cloth­ing and was al­ready in op­er­a­tion with a func­tion­al web­site and sales.

“I can con­firm that the per­son is a rel­a­tive of my wife,” the AG said.

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“But this is the first time I am hear­ing of it and see­ing this,” he said, re­fer­ring to the com­pa­ny reg­is­tra­tion doc­u­ments.

“My wife has a large fam­i­ly and they are in­volved in var­i­ous busi­ness­es. I knew noth­ing of this.”

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The ap­par­el cloth­ing com­pa­ny has as its main share­hold­er GV Hold­ings Lim­it­ed. That com­pa­ny pro­duces 3 Star Sports­wear and Rossi sport­ing ap­par­el.

The com­pa­ny was reg­is­tered back in Feb­ru­ary, sev­er­al months be­fore Al-Rawi him­self an­nounced cannabis con­trol leg­is­la­tion would be brought to Par­lia­ment for le­gal­i­sa­tion de­bate.

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A company of the company registration for the West Indian Cannabis Company Limited, whose directors include an in-law of Attorney General Faris Al-Rawi.

A company of the company registration for the West Indian Cannabis Company Limited, whose directors include an in-law of Attorney General Faris Al-Rawi.

The Dan­ger­ous Drugs (Amend­ment) Bill was passed in the Low­er House on Wednes­day and in the Sen­ate Fri­day night.

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The Cannabis Con­trol Bill, which is the re­tail and mar­ket­ing as­pect of the le­gal­i­sa­tion, is cur­rent­ly be­fore a Joint Se­lect Com­mit­tee of Par­lia­ment. De­spite the lat­est de­vel­op­ment, Al-Rawi said he would not be re­cus­ing him­self from cannabis de­bates or dis­cus­sions in the fu­ture.

“Why should I?” Al-Rawi said.

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“I am not in any way ben­e­fit­ing fi­nan­cial­ly from any busi­ness.”

Rather, Al-Rawi de­scribed him­self as an at­tor­ney and a prop­er­ty de­vel­op­er.

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“I have no busi­ness in­ter­ests in any­thing else,” he said.

In fact, he said if he re­cused him­self from every dis­cus­sion in which he had an in­ter­est, he would not be able to par­tic­i­pate in tax amnesty de­bates or the de­mon­eti­sa­tion of the cot­ton-based $100 notes.

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“Had I known about it, I would have de­clared it and would press on,” he said.

“I could on­ly de­clare what I know.”

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Mean­while, Moses said while he usu­al­ly re­mained silent on so­cial me­dia, he was plan­ning to put out a state­ment and a link to his web­site.

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“All my fam­i­ly from T&T (are) in the tex­tile and gar­ment in­dus­try and cloth­ing line,” Moses said.

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“Wican­nco is just a cloth­ing com­pa­ny.”

He said that while the com­pa­ny’s de­scrip­tion was broad, the main pur­pose of the site and com­pa­ny was to “cen­tralise press and me­dia through­out the Caribbean.”

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“I am not in the mar­i­jua­na in­dus­try, it’s just a brand,” Moses added.

Moses said he was al­so tak­en aback by the at­tacks on so­cial me­dia just be­cause of an “ab­stract con­nec­tion” to the At­tor­ney Gen­er­al.

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“I’m po­lit­i­cal­ly ex­posed be­cause my wife is not even blood-re­lat­ed to the AG?” Moses asked.

“That just doesn’t hold wa­ter.”

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Mean­while, mar­i­jua­na ac­tivist Naz­ma Muller took to so­cial me­dia to ques­tion why, back in 2015, the Min­istry of Le­gal Af­fairs re­fused to al­low her to reg­is­ter “The Cannabis Foun­da­tion.” She said she was not al­lowed to use the gan­ja leaf sym­bol as the com­pa­ny lo­go for the Caribbean Col­lec­tive for Jus­tice ei­ther.

When Guardian Me­dia post­ed Muller’s ques­tion to Al-Rawi, he said, “I have no role in the reg­is­tra­tion of com­pa­nies.”

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He pro­vid­ed two com­pa­ny reg­is­tra­tions, one in 2015 and the oth­er in 2016, adding, “You have seen for your­self that there are sev­er­al com­pa­nies with the name.”

He said the word was grant­ed to com­pa­nies be­fore he be­came At­tor­ney Gen­er­al.

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“The Reg­is­trar Gen­er­al is the au­thor­i­ty,” he said.

The Cannabis Con­trol Au­thor­i­ty will be the body al­lowed to grant li­cences to the per­sons seek­ing to be­come re­tail providers, as well as those hop­ing to trans­port, ex­port and im­port the herb.

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Jenna-Marine Nahous-Moses and her husband Christopher Moses, both directors of the West Indian Cannabis Company.

Jenna-Marine Nahous-Moses and her husband Christopher Moses, both directors of the West Indian Cannabis Company.

STATE­MENT BY MOSES

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My name is Christo­pher Moses; back in Feb­ru­ary of this year, I did in fact reg­is­ter a com­pa­ny, West In­di­an Cannabis Co LTD (WICC)

Please check out our web­site at www.wican­na­co.com

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Our busi­ness is in ap­par­el!

Our team be­lieves a glob­al cannabis ap­par­el brand is prime to emerge from the Caribbean re­gion and in prepa­ra­tion of this move­ment we have been in the process of build­ing an ap­par­el brand and a news fo­rum to cen­tral­ize all of the med­ical mar­i­jua­na in­dus­try re­lat­ed news and press through­out the re­gion.

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While we are still in the pre-ex­e­cu­tion stage of this ven­ture; in light of to­day’s so­cial me­dia blast our group feels it be im­per­a­tive to state the facts to dis­pel any ru­mors or as­sump­tions made by cer­tain per­sons.

In pur­suit of build­ing an ap­par­el line named WICC (West In­di­an Cannabis Co) I knew I would need a part­ner with the ex­pe­ri­ence and know how re­quired to make this a suc­cess­ful ven­ture.

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Eas­i­ly enough, I turned to and aligned my­self with my own fam­i­ly, GV Hold­ings, based in Trinidad, who have been in the tex­tile and gar­ment in­dus­try for over 40 years who have suc­cess­ful­ly cre­at­ed many mass mar­ket brands re­gion­al­ly over the years in­clud­ing house­hold names such as Rossi.

Fur­ther to the above, I cat­e­gor­i­cal­ly state that I have no busi­ness deal­ings with Faris Al-Rawi what­so­ev­er. I do not, nor did I dis­cuss my busi­ness with him as I have NO fi­nan­cial re­la­tion­ship with him. I do not poss­es any in­side in­for­ma­tion per­tain­ing to the cannabis in­dus­try as it comes to the fore in T&T and re­gion wide.

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Our busi­ness in ap­par­el cer­tain­ly could not – to any right mind­ed per­son – fea­ture in the de­plorable al­le­ga­tions be­ing made.

The whole world, and cer­tain­ly the Caribbean, which mar­ket we serve in ap­par­el, are way ahead of the cur­rent de­vel­op­ments be­ing dis­cussed in Trinidad and To­ba­go.

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Any at­tempts to dis­cred­it my name, this ven­ture, or my part­ners in­volved is un­war­rant­ed, mis­lead­ing and can on­ly be de­scribed as scan­dalous, un­truth­ful, and un­doubtably po­lit­i­cal­ly mo­ti­vat­ed at­tempt to pro­voke a re­ac­tion.

We in­vite any­one who is an ad­vo­cate for the de­crim­i­nal­iza­tion and pro­lif­er­a­tion of med­ical mar­i­jua­na lit­er­a­ture and in­for­ma­tion to join us at the

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launch of our West In­di­an Cannabis Co. Ltd cloth­ing ap­par­el line, next week Fri­day De­cem­ber 20th: at THC (The Hide­out Cloth­ing Co.) lo­cat­ed on the 3rd floor of Long Cir­cu­lar Mall

Vis­it us and check out the va­ri­ety of WICC ap­par­el; which will al­so make for a great gift over the up­com­ing high hol­i­days.

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God bless Trinidad & To­ba­go and more im­por­tant­ly, God bless those who try to de­stroy it with en­vy, hate, and di­vi­sion.

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