LOCAL hip-hop artist William Pierson went on trial Monday for drug-related charges following a Winnipeg police raid on his home in the summer of 2008.
Pierson, a member of local trio Winnipeg's Most, goes by the stage name Jon-C. He is charged with two counts of possession of crack cocaine and marijuana for the purpose of trafficking.
Court was told Monday that Pierson, 32, had been the target of police surveillance and was believed to be selling drugs out of his home in the 300 block of Church Avenue.
Six people, including Pierson, were arrested at the home. All were released shortly afterwards.
During a search of the house, police found 35 rocks of crack cocaine, a bag of marijuana, cash and a cellphone.
The raid late in the evening of July 23, 2008, was triggered by information provided to police by a registered informant.
Pierson tried to get the search warrant for the raid thrown out during a hearing in March. Had he been successful, the trial would likely have been scuttled, but Justice Douglas Abra upheld the warrant.
The trial, before a judge alone, is expected to last three days.
Pierson also faces drug charges from a raid on a Lansdowne Avenue premises in November 2012. A hearing on those charges is set for December.