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Medical Marijuana

Michigan Medical Marijuana Grower Withdraws Guilty Plea

Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Sat, June, 16th 2012 by THCFinder
In light of a recent Michigan Supreme Court ruling that says the state’s MMJ law can be used as an
affirmative defense in criminal cases (http://www.thcfinder.com/marijuana-blog/medical-marijuana/
2012/06/michigan-supreme-court-says-states-mmj-law-shields-patients-from-prosecution), a 45-year-
old medical marijuana grower is withdrawing his guilty plea in a drug manufacturing case.
 
 
Mark Rowe initially entered the guilty plea after a judge ruled he could not bring up Michigan’s medical
marijuana law in the case. He was charged with marijuana manufacturing after police found 12 plants
growing in a garden outside his home. This is within the legal limit under Michigan law, but police say he
violated the law because his plants were not secured, something Mark denies.
 
 
This led the judge to rule out a medical marijuana defense because Mark was supposedly violating the
medical marijuana law, but that hasn’t been proven in court. Mark was denied the ability to even bring
up the fact that he was a legal grower under state law, making him just some guy growing weed in his
garden in the eyes of a jury.
 
 
The judge in Mark’s case has now allowed him to withdraw the guilty plea he entered last fall.
 
 
Rowe’s case is similar to the one involving an Owosso, Michigan resident named Larry King, the case that
led to the recent state Supreme Court decision.
 
 
To observers of the national marijuana scene in the U.S., it may seem like Michigan state and local
authorities are more hostile to medical cannabis patients than authorities in other MMJ states. But
things may changing now with this new state Supreme Court ruling. Courts have a way of chastening
law enforcement, and hopefully authorities will begin to back off of patients and caregivers and let the
state’s medical marijuana law do what it was intended to do.
 
 
That’s the best Michigan patients can hope for at this point.
 
 

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Medical Marijuana Growers Bankruptcy Case Thrown out by Judge

Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Fri, June, 15th 2012 by THCFinder
While the fact that their product is illegal under federal law did not stand them good stead in
bankruptcy court to begin with, in the end the Chapter 11 case of CGO Enterprises LLC was thrown
out of court by Judge Michael Romero of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Denver because they filed
an “incomplete bankruptcy case” and then refused to provide the court with more information. 
 
 
The judge waited for 42 days for a response from CGO, who filed their case on May 1 st in an attempt to
keep from being evicted from a warehouse in Denver, CO where they grow their plants. In court papers
the company claimed that it owed its landlord some $800,000.
 
 
But one has to wonder how far the case would have gone anyway, considering that marijuana
cultivation is illegal under the Federal Controlled Substances Act. “It is well known that the cultivation
and distribution of marijuana for profit would be a criminal violation of the federal Controlled
Substances Act and other narcotics statutes,” said a federal “watchdog,” Richard Wieland of the Justice
Department’s U.S. trustee office, in a court filing.
 
 
An attorney for CGO said the company didn’t disagree with the dismissal of the case, but that it did “not
agree with some of the allegations regarding ‘criminal’ activity made in such motion.”
 
 
In fact medical marijuana is heavily regulated in Colorado, but in federal court there is really no way
around the fact that it’s illegal under federal law.
 
 
The bottom line is that federal law infects just about every aspect of medical marijuana. It dictates
how many states react to medical cannabis, and just how much access patients get. Until federal law is
changed, medical marijuana patients will never truly be free.
 
 
And businesses will never be able to take advantage of the laws that “regular” businesses do.
 
 

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Medical Marijuana Patient-Tracking Program against Colorado Constitution?

Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Wed, June, 13th 2012 by THCFinder

Medical marijuana advocates are crying foul over a proposed plan in Colorado to track patients and share the information with law enforcement, and also over the way discussions about the plan have been kept from the public.

 

The firestorm kicked off when William Breathes from Denver Westword reported on a closed-door meeting on the issue. "The departments are not helping us," said medical marijuana advocate Kathleen Chippi. "We've talked to people at every department that was involved in the meeting," which focused on collaboration between the Colorado Department of Health and Environment and the Colorado Bureau of Investigation, "and we got responses like, 'Well, we can't answer that,' or something to that effect. They're not giving us a clear and concise answer. But the bottom line is, we know the meeting wasn't posted publicly, and we know from William's article that the public was asked not to come."

 

According to William Breathes, CDPHE spokesman Mark Salley confirmed that the meeting was not open to the public, which Chippi says violates Colorado Sunshine laws. Furthermore Chippi says the proposed system itself violates Colorado’s Amendment 20, the state’s medical marijuana law. In particular the passage that states, “Authorized employees of state or local law enforcement agencies shall be granted access to the information contained within the state health agency's confidential registry only for the purpose of verifying that an individual who has presented a registry identification card to a state or local law enforcement official is lawfully in possession of such card.”

 

No mention of tracking and sharing info with law enforcement. "For twelve years, our constitutional amendment has said something, and patients thought they were protected," Chippi said. "And for ten years, the health department has said the registry would never be put online at all. It was supposed to be one modem at the department of health. And now they're sharing information with law enforcement."

 

Chippi is backing a ballot initiative known as Amendment 70, which would make marijuana legalization a constitutional right in the state and would also stop Colorado resources from being used by the feds in medical marijuana crackdowns. Supporters of Amendment 70 are currently gathering signatures.

 

Source: http://blogs.westword.com


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Michigan Supreme Court Says States MMJ Law Shields Patients from Prosecution

Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Fri, June, 1st 2012 by THCFinder

On Thursday the Michigan Supreme Court ruled that the state’s medical cannabis law shields patients from prosecution by state authorities.

 

The court said that the law showed voters’ "intent to permit both registered and unregistered patients to assert medical reasons for using marijuana as a defense to any prosecution involving marijuana."

 

"That's the way we wrote it," said Karen O'Keefe, an attorney with The Marijuana Policy Project, the group that spearheaded Michigan’s medical marijuana maw in 2008.

 

The ruling basically states that anyone with a doctor’s recommendation for medical marijuana before their arrest on marijuana-related offenses can use medical marijuana as a defense, even if they are not registered with the state.

 

Those of you who live in Michigan or have followed the progress of their medical marijuana laws knows that a lot of patients are being helped but that oftentimes the relationship between medical cannabis providers and state law enforcement has been contentious at best.

 

This new ruling may only be a small distinction to some, but if you have a doctor’s recommendation in Michigan it can be a very big deal. The essence of medical marijuana laws are their function as a shield for medical marijuana patients from regular cannabis laws. While this does nothing to change federal law, medical marijuana patients will come into contact with state and local law enforcement much more often than they will see a DEA agent.

 

And in the end all positive steps in marijuana law reform should be celebrated. Some will say that the pace of change is slow, but so to was the pace of prohibition. Marijuana became nationally illegal in the 1930’s but it took a few decades before law enforcement started cracking heads over it.

 

The road back to legality will be long, but as long as progress is always made the success of the ultimate goal is inevitable.

 

Source: http://www.freep.com


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Medical marijuana legalized in Connecticut

Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Fri, June, 1st 2012 by THCFinder
(Reuters) - Connecticut on Friday became the 17th U.S. state to legalize the medical use of marijuana.
 
The state's Governor Dannel Malloy signed into law legislation allowing licensed physicians to certify an adult patient's use of marijuana for medical purposes, according to a statement from the governor's office.
 
The new law puts in place restrictions to prevent the kind of abuse that has plagued some of the 16 other states and the District of Columbia where pot is legal for medical use.
 
"For years, we've heard from so many patients with chronic diseases who undergo treatments like chemotherapy or radiation and are denied the palliative benefits that medical marijuana would provide," Governor Malloy said.
 
"With careful regulation and safeguards, this law will allow a doctor and a patient to decide what is in that patient's best interest," he said.
 
Under the bill, patients and their caregivers must register with the Department of Consumer Protection. In addition, a doctor must certify there is a medical need for marijuana to be dispensed, including such debilitating conditions as cancer, glaucoma, HIV, AIDS, Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis or epilepsy.
 
Finally, only a pharmacist with a special license can dispense medical marijuana, according to the new law.
 
 

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Florida Seniors for Medical Marijuana

Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Thu, May, 31st 2012 by THCFinder

In just about any poll you see on marijuana legalization, the age group least in favor of it are senior citizens. And yet, as former federal prisoner Robert Platshorn points out, they are often in the most need of it.

 

Platshorn served nearly 30 years in prison on federal drug charges, and since getting out four years ago, he's been promoting medical marijuana use to seniors in Florida in his “Silver Tour.” He contends that medical marijuana legalization is a done deal in Florida once seniors are on board, and that’s a likely scenario.

 

As with anything, the key to winning over seniors is information. Many never heard of marijuana growing up and what they found out later in life about it was likely government propaganda. And as they learn more, they begin to see the truth. They were lied to and now is there chance to learn and benefit from an amazing plant.

 

Everyone deserves to have the option of medical cannabis to help with their ailments. And since seniors generally have more ailments than those younger than them, it makes sense that they should be informed about this natural, non-toxic medicine that was kept from them for so long.

 

 


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