Rosie Rowbotham Dies At Age 79

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Rosie Rowbotham
Photo: Marc Emery/Facebook

Rosie Rowbotham, Canada’s longest serving cannabis prisoner, has died at age 79.

Rosie was Canada’s most determined & irrepressible hashish smuggler, doing over 20 years in Canada’s federal prisons for 3 separate hashish smuggling adventures. Sentenced to 20 years prison each time, Rosie served 7 years each time, incarcerated from 1974 to 1998 for 21 of those 24 years.

The remaining three years were smuggling plans: obtaining ocean worthy ships and piloting the ship himself from Lebanon to the shores of Nova Scotia! 5,400 nautical miles! Exactly 10,000 nautical kilometers for one ship with 3-5 tons of hash onboard across the entire Mediterranean Sea and Atlantic ocean!

Three expeditions ended in arrest & capture, but a few made it through.

Because they were non-violent offenses, he was released after serving 7 years of the 20 year sentences; three times in the 70’s, 80’s, 90’s. 20-plus years total prison time served. Released finally in 1997, he never smuggled again.

Rosie was a famous hash dealer at Rochdale College in Toronto in the 1969-1974 period.

Rosie then decided he wanted to get the hashish from the source. Buying 3 tons of hashish in the Bekaa Valley in Lebanon, each time he got a small & barely ocean worthy ship and piloted the hash smuggling boat across the Mediterranean and Atlantic Ocean – taking up to 6 weeks, but usually 20-25 days out at sea.

He made some successful voyages & landed the hash on the shores of Nova Scotia. Caught, arrested & imprisoned for 7 years, on release he set about to do it again. And again. Rosie Rowbotham boasted to the sentencing judge, “I’m a hash man, I’ll always be a hash man, I vow to smuggle again!”