Portland NORML News - Thursday, February 26, 1998

NORML Weekly News (House Republicans Declare - Damn The Science,
Full Speed Ahead! Approve Resolution Opposing Any Use Of Marijuana
As A Medicine; California State Senator Introduces Legislation
To Limit Patients Protected By Proposition 215; Jury Reverses Court Martial
After Hearing Evidence Of Legal Products Testing Positive For Marijuana)

Date: Thu, 26 Feb 1998 18:38:21 EST
Subject: NORML WPR 2/26/98 (II)


T 202-483-8751 o F 202-483-0057
Internet http://www.norml.org

. . . a weekly service for the media on news items related to marijuana

February 26, 1998

Link to related article
House Republicans Declare: Damn The Science, Full Speed Ahead! Approve Resolution Opposing Any Use Of Marijuana As A Medicine February 26, 1998, Washington, D.C.: A coalition of Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee, Subcommittee on Crime, approved a "sense of the House of Representatives" resolution stating that "marijuana is a dangerous and addictive drug and should not be legalized for medical use." The resolution -- introduced by subcommittee chair Bill McCollum (R-Fla.) -- won the approval of all seven Republicans present, while being opposed by the two Democrats at the mark-up, Reps. John Conyers (Mich.) and Sheila Jackson Lee (Texas). Ironically, the subcommittee's action came just one day after the National Academy of Sciences Institute of Medicine (IOM) held its third and final symposium on the merits of marijuana therapy. The IOM organized the conferences as part of a federally funded 18-month review of the scientific evidence demonstrating marijuana's therapeutic value. Before passing the resolution, the Republicans rejected an amendment offered by Rep. Conyers, ranking Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee, stating that the "States have the primary responsibility for protecting the health and safety of their citizens, and the Federal Government should not interfere with any state's policy (as expressed in a legislative enactment or referendum) which authorizes persons with AIDS or cancer to pursue, upon the recommendation of a licensed physician, a course of treatment for such illness that includes the use of marijuana." Republicans argued that any lifting of the legal ban prohibiting marijuana, even for medical purposes, would send mixed and potentially dangerous messages to the American public about drug use. Conyers said that the federal government has no right to interfere in the relationship between a doctor and a patient. "We are talking about patients with the most serious illnesses a person can have -- people who may very well die," Conyers said. "And for these patients, there is substantial medical literature suggesting that marijuana can reduce their suffering." "The Republicans on the Judiciary Committee refuse to recognize that this is a public health question, not part of the war on drugs," said NORML Executive Director R. Keith Stroup, Esq. "They are willing to ignore the science and deny an effective medication to the sick and dying in order to advance their political agenda. It is especially disappointing that Chairman McCollum, who twice sponsored legislation to permit the legal use of medical marijuana in the 1980s, would lead this misguided effort." The resolution now goes for consideration before the full Judiciary Committee. A separate federal bill to allow for the legal use and distribution of medical marijuana in states that approve such efforts is pending in the House Commerce Committee, Subcommittee on Health and Environment. House Bill 1782 -- introduced by Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) -- currently has ten co-sponsors. For more information or a copy of the February 23 House Resolution, please contact either Keith Stroup or Paul Armentano of NORML @ (202) 483-5500. Information on upcoming state medical marijuana initiatives and legislation is also available upon request. ***
Link to earlier story
California State Senator Introduces Legislation To Limit Patients Protected By Proposition 215 February 26, 1998, Sacramento, CA: State Sen. Richard Rainey (R-Walnut Creek) introduced legislation on Friday to curb the use of medical marijuana in California. Senate Bill 2113 seeks to restrict the number of patients who qualify to use marijuana legally under state law to those suffering from only HIV, cancer, glaucoma, or spasticity disorders. The legislation omits several medical conditions for which marijuana often provides relief such as chronic pain, neuralgia, and some psychiatric disorders. "The passage of this legislation could make criminals overnight out of thousands of patients now legally using marijuana as a medicine," NORML Executive Director R. Keith Stroup, Esq. said. The Rainey bill further states that physicians who recommend marijuana to a patient must do so in writing. All written recommendations must be re-issued every six months. California NORML Coordinator Dale Gieringer said that many California physicians are wary of writing medical marijuana recommendations because they fear federal officials may suspend their license to prescribe scheduled drugs. Senate Bill 2113 also states that Proposition 215 may only provide an "affirmative defense" against prosecution rather than an exemption from state criminal marijuana charges. This new language would subject even bona fide medical marijuana patients to arrest and prosecution until they proved their cases at trial, Gieringer said. For S.B. 2113 to become law, it must gain the approval of the California Legislature and a majority of state voters because it would alter the purpose of Proposition 215. In response to this and other efforts to compromise the scope of Proposition 215, state Sen. John Vasconcellos (D-Santa Clara) recently introduced legislation to form a "Medical Marijuana Distribution Task Force" to determine a "safe and affordable" distribution system for medical marijuana. Language in Proposition 215 encouraged "federal and state governments to implement a plan to provide ... marijuana to all patients in medical need;" however, no such efforts are yet under way. For more information, please contact either Dale Gieringer of California NORML @ (415) 563-5858 or Keith Stroup of NORML @ (202) 483-5500. ***
Link to earlier story
Jury Reverses Court Martial After Hearing Evidence Of Legal Products Testing Positive For Marijuana February 26, 1998, Dover, DE: A jury overturned a U.S. Air Force court martial after hearing evidence that hemp oil may test positive for marijuana on a urine test. The decision acquits Master Sergeant Spencer Gaines, 41, of charges that he smoked marijuana. "[This ruling] has the military drug testing labs very concerned because it undermines the confidence in the effectiveness of the drug testing program, at least for marijuana," Gaines' attorney, Charles Gittens said. "The government now has to rule out, in every case, a legal source for [marijuana metabolites.] Here's a product that's legal, commercially available over the counter in health-food stores and grocery stores -- and it can pop you positive for [marijuana.]" Hemp seed oil is sold commercially in health food stores across the nation. Presently, health professionals like Dr. Andrew Weil tout the nutritional benefits of hemp oil, noting that it is second only to soy in protein and contains the highest concentration of essential amino and fatty acids found in any food. The oil may be applied to foods just prior to consumption or ingested in capsule form. A series of studies conducted this past summer both in the United States and abroad indicated that the regular users of the oil may test positive for THC regardless of how they consumed it. Gaines testified that he began using hemp oil in 1996 as a replacement for essential fatty acids. "Urinalysis is not a reliable indicator of workplace impairment and, in this instance, the court found that it is not even a true detector of past marijuana use," said Allen St. Pierre, Executive Director of The NORML Foundation. "As the use of hemp seed oil gains popularity, employers need to recognize that this legal product may test positive for marijuana." For more information, please contact either Allen St. Pierre or Paul Armentano of The NORML Foundation @ (202) 483-8751. -END- MORE THAN 11 MILLION MARIJUANA ARRESTS SINCE 1965...ANOTHER EVERY 49 SECONDS!

Suspect In Police Shooting Found Dead ('The Oregonian' Notes Suspicious
Jail Death Of Target In Warrantless Break-In By Portland Marijuana Task Force
That Left One Cop Dead, Two Wounded - Dons' Attorney, Andrew Bates,
Calls For Independent Investigation In Strangling Death Of Victim
Who Was Paralyzed From Waist Down And Wounded In Chest During Shootout -
Paper Still Refuses To Say Whether Fireplace Evidence Corroborates Police,
Who Said Warrantless Break-In Was Based On Smell Of Suspect Trying To Destroy
Evidence Of 51 Cannabis Plants By Burning Them, Or Whether It Backs Dons,
Who Said He Didn't Even Know It Was Police At His Door,
Implying He Was Not Destroying Evidence)

The Oregonian
February 26, 1998

Suspect in police shooting found dead

The medical examiner rules that Steven Douglas
Dons, accused of killing Officer Colleen Waibel,
strangled himself with a bedsheet

By David R. Anderson
of The Oregonian staff

The man accused of killing a police officer last
month during a drug raid was found dead
Wednesday morning in his jail medical room, the
victim of an apparent suicide.

Steven Douglas Dons, 37, twisted a bedsheet
around his neck and tied it to the frame of his
adjustable hospital bed to strangle himself, said
Multnomah County Sheriff's Detective Gary
Muncy. Dons, who was paralyzed from the waist
down when wounded during the shootout,
wedged his right arm through the rungs of the
bed's side rail for leverage. He tightened the
noose by raising the bed about one foot, pressing
the controls with his left hand.

Dons was not under suicide watch, and it was
unclear whether he had talked of killing himself.

At a news conference in front of the Justice
Center jail, Dons' attorney, Andrew Bates, called
for the state attorney general's office to conduct
an independent investigation.

"We don't suspect foul play, but we don't know,"
Bates said. "A lot of people out there didn't like
Steven Dons."

A member of the Justice Center jail medical staff
found Dons dead about 4:45 a.m., Muncy said.
The staff member entered Dons' room to give
him regular medical treatment, said Lt. Brian
Martinek, a Multnomah County sheriff's
spokesman. Dons needed to be moved every
three hours because of his injuries.

Dons, who weighed about 250 pounds, was lying
in bed. The staff tried to revive him but did not
use "extraordinary" measures because he
obviously was dead, Martinek said. Dons was not
taken to a hospital.

Officials do not know how long Dons had been
dead. The last time jail staff know Dons was alive
was about 1:30 a.m., when they did a medical
check, Martinek said. Staff members gave him
treatment and talked to him. Martinek would not
say what Dons talked about.

"There was nothing out of the ordinary,"
Martinek said.

Dons was being held in a medical unit on the jail's
fourth floor. He was in a room by himself. The
bed in Dons' room was similar to a hospital bed
with a T-bar above.

During the three hours between medical
treatments, corrections deputies made visual
checks twice an hour through a window on Dons'
locked door, where they could see him in bed.
The room had a low-light "night light," which
provides enough light to see everything but is dim
enough to allow inmates to sleep, Martinek said.

"He appeared to be sleeping," Martinek said.

Muncy said a rolling table used to serve meals
might have partially blocked deputies' view of
Dons through the window. In addition, the lack of
contrast of the sheet against Dons' neck might
have made it difficult to see.

Bates said he last saw his client Friday and he did
not believe Dons was suicidal.

"He was upbeat and engaged in his defense,"
Bates said.

"We do have some information we will provide to
investigators about his treatment in the facility
that may be pertinent to his death," Bates said
after the news conference. He would not

Dons did not leave a suicide note, Muncy said. "I
am told he had been recently talking about"
suicide, he said.

Officials originally said Dons showed no signs of
being depressed or suicidal, but backed off those
statements later Wednesday.

"There has been different information regarding
that, and we're trying to clarify that," Martinek

Inmates on suicide watch are held in special cells
with constant supervision and are not allowed
access to bedsheets and other items that they
could use to commit suicide, said sheriff's Cmdr.
Jeanie King. Psychiatric nurses determine
whether inmates are placed on suicide watch.

Since the Justice Center jail opened in 1983, 10
inmates have committed suicide, Martinek said.

Dons died of asphyxia by strangulation, said Dr.
Larry Lewman, state medical examiner. Lewman
ruled Dons' death a suicide.

Lewman confirmed that Dons' injuries were
consistent with Muncy's account, including
bruises on Dons' right arm where he braced
himself on the bed rail.

The attorney general does not typically investigate
inmate suicides unless the district attorney or
governor requests it, said spokeswoman Kristen
Grainger. Multnomah County District Attorney
Michael Schrunk said he did not know of any
reason the case should be investigated by an
independent agency but would be willing to
discuss it with Bates.

Sheriff Dan Noelle asked the East County Major
Crimes Team, consisting of members of the
sheriff's office and Gresham and Troutdale police
detectives, to conduct an investigation.

Martinek said jail staff was not to blame for
Dons' death, although commanders will review
the case.

"There was no conduct recorded outside the
policies and procedures of this facility," he said.

In fact, Muncy said, the jail staff was upset by
Dons' death.

"They were pretty well devastated," he said.
"They put in a lot of work keeping his spirits up.

"It's a shame. I know there are people who will
say he got his comeuppance by his own hand, but
it's a shame."

James McIntyre, the Multnomah County senior
deputy district attorney who was handling the
case, said Dons' suicide prevented a long battle
over a death penalty case.

"My reaction is that I'm glad it's over now rather
than dragging on 15 years," he said.

Officer Kim Keist, who was wounded in the
shooting, is relieved, said her husband, Noble

"She doesn't have to lay there and worry about
the upcoming court case in which she would have
to relive it all." On the other hand, he said, there
are "some wild theories" about what happened
during the raid, and a trial would have brought out
the facts.

Keist said Dons killed himself "because he's a
coward and didn't want to face the possibilities of
what would happen to him in prison. He didn't
want to lay there and wait for the lethal injection."

Officer Colleen Waibel, 44, was killed in the
shootout. Her husband, Portland police Sgt. Mark
Fortner, did not think it was appropriate to
comment on Dons' death, said East Precinct
Cmdr. Mark Paresi.

Police say Dons shot and killed Waibel and
wounded Keist and Sgt. Jim Hudson when they
forced their way into the house in which he was
living at 2612 S.E. 111th Ave. The Jan. 27 drug
raid started as a report that someone inside the
house was growing marijuana. When police saw
smoke that smelled like burning marijuana coming
from a chimney, they broke down the front door,
fearing that evidence was being destroyed. Inside
the front door, they were met by gunfire.

With Dons dead, McIntyre said he felt able to talk
about the case.

"He ambushed them," McIntyre said.

Bates fired back.

"What do you expect the (district attorney) to
say?" he said. "Steven Dons is not the monster
portrayed by the media. The truth is, he felt a
great deal of remorse and sorrow for the death of
Officer Colleen Waibel."

Dons' roommate, Jeffery Harlan Moore, 44, told
The Oregonian on Feb. 5 that Dons admitted to
him that he shot the officers. Dons, who had
trouble hearing, claimed that he didn't know
police were at the door and thought they were
others intending to harm him, Moore said.

"He didn't know who they were," Moore said.
"He really regrets what he's done."

Moore, who was arrested Feb. 12 on drug and
child endangerment charges, remains in the
Justice Center jail.

Peter Farrell of The Oregonian staff contributed
to this report.

Suspect In Slaying Of Officer Commits Suicide In Jail ('Associated Press'
Account Of 250-Pound Portland Man Who Supposedly Strangled Himself To Death
Quotes Multnomah County Jail Official Saying A Glass-Enclosed Video Camera
Covered In Dried Toothpaste Was Obsolete And Not In Use At Time Of Homicide)

Date: Thu, 26 Feb 1998 21:27:47 -0500
To: DrugSense News Service 
From: Richard Lake 
Subject: MN: Suspect In Slaying Of Officer Commits Suicide In Jail
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: Phil Smith 
Source: Associated Press
Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998
Author: Lauren Dodge, Associated Press Writer


PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) -- A man accused of fatally shooting a police officer
during a marijuana raid apparently used his bedsheets to strangle himself
in jail this morning, police said.

Steven Dons, who was paralyzed from the waist down in last month's shootout
with officers, was found dead at about 4:30 a.m. during a routine check on his
medical room at the Multnomah County Jail.

"It appears he used some parts of the bedding in the room to strangle
himself," sheriff's Lt. Brian Martinek said at a news conference. "It appears he
committed suicide."

"He was not under a suicide watch, no.

We had no reason to believe ... that he was going to kill himself."

The 37-year-old Dons was being held on aggravated murder charges in the
Jan. 27 death of Officer Colleen Waibel, the city's first female officer
killed in the line of duty.

Martinek said Dons' room had been given a visual check twice an hour during
the night. Officers said they last spoke to Dons about 1:30 a.m. and he
said nothing unusual.

It was only when a nurse came in to shift Dons in his bed that officials
realized he was dead. He was not found hanging, but was lying in his bed
and appeared at first glance to be sleeping.

Martinek said Dons was found hooked to part of the apparatus on the bed,
attached by either clothing or bedding.

When asked how a 250-pound in his condition could strangle himself,
Martinek said: "That's what we're looking into."

After a morning news conference, jail officials gave reporters and camera
crews a tour of the fourth floor room where Don's had killed himself hours

The 12-by-12-foot cell was equipped with only a wheelchair, a chair piled
with blankets and an adjustable medical bed with a metal T-bar over the
top. Scratched on the inside of the door was some graffiti that read:
"Death to all men."

There also was a glass-enclosed video camera in the corner of the ceiling,
which was covered in dried toothpaste. Police said the camera was obsolete
and was not in use at the time of the suicide.

It was not clear how long the toothpaste had been there.

Lt. Ron Bishop said there have been about 10 suicides since the ward opened
in 1983 and there is very little anyone can do to stop someone intent on
killing themselves.

"If someone has the will, they are going to do it," Bishop said, adding
that one inmate killed himself several years ago by picking up a bed and
dropping it on his throat.

Dons also was charged with attempted aggravated murder and assault in the
shooting and wounding of Officer Kim Keist, and a male officer who was shot
in the hand.

Five officers visited Dons rented home after they smelled marijuana smoke
and had reason to believe he was destroying evidence from a pot growing
operation. While in the process of obtaining a search warrant, they bashed
in his front door with a rock from his front yard and were shot as they
came down a hallway.

Dons held police at bay for 2 1/2 hours before officers used bean bag bullets
and tear gas to apprehend him. He was carried away, nude and bleeding, on
the back of a state police van.

Court documents said that the house where Dons lived contained an arsenal
that included a grenade launcher, shotguns, rifles and handguns including
an M-14 assault-style rifle, a .22-caliber semiautomatic rifle and two
Russian SKS semiautomatic rifles.

Dons allegedly fired at least 10 rounds at officers from an SKS rifle.

The house and a shed on the property contained hundreds of rounds of
ammunition, including a 100-round-capacity magazine with 80 rounds inside.

Police also seized a laser sight, a gas mask canister, at least one
bayonet, a crossbow and a pair of nunchuks -- a martial arts weapon. They
also found "firearms propaganda" and a book titled "Confirmed Kill."

Dons had an extensive arrest record in Las Vegas between 1979 and 1993: Two
counts of obstructing a police officer and single counts of resisting
arrest, resisting a police officer, battery with a deadly weapon, using a
deadly weapon in the commission of a crime, and being an ex-felon in
possession of a firearm.

Epitope Announces FDA Clearance Of Oral Fluid Assay For Cannabinoids
(Press Release From Web Site Of Company In Suburban Portland, Oregon,
Says Oral Drug Test For Marijuana Comes After Recent Approval
Of Similar Tests For Cocaine And Methamphetamine - No Mention Tests Could Be
Anything Other Than 100 Percent Accurate)

Date: Tue, 3 Mar 1998 14:00:30 -0800 (PST)
From: bc616@scn.org (Darral Good)
To: hemp-talk@hemp.net
Subject: HT: Epitope drug testing firm owns the hepatitis strawberry co.
Reply-To: bc616@scn.org
Sender: owner-hemp-talk@hemp.net

>From the company's own web site I learned that they own the company that
was involved with the hep-a outbreak from strawberries.

Epitope Announces FDA Clearance of Oral Fluid Assay For Cannabanoids

Beaverton, Oregon, Feb. 26 -- Epitope, Inc. (Nasdaq: [3]EPTO) today
announced that its research partner, STC Technologies, Inc., located
in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, has received FDA clearance for the STC
Cannabanoids Micro-Plate EIA (enzyme immunoassay) for use in the
qualitative determination of cannabanoids in oral fluid collected with
the OraSure(r) Oral Specimen Collection Device manufactured by Epitope,
Inc. This assay is intended to detect the use of marijuana. ``STC and
Epitope continue to develop the full panel of products to allow
drugs-of-abuse testing in oral fluids to become a near term reality
that will benefit a variety of areas where remote collection and
testing are needed,'' said Sam Niedballa, Ph.D., executive vice
president, research and development of STC. This clearance related to
cannabanoids is in addition to recently announced clearances for use
of OraSure to test for cocaine and methamphetamine using other STC

Under an agreement with Epitope, STC Technologies, Inc., has developed
OraSure based-tests for cotinine, a metabolite of nicotine, and a
group of drugs commonly called the NIDA-5. The NIDA-5 includes
cocaine, methamphetamine, cannabanoids (THC), opiates, and
phencyclidine (PCP). ``With each clearance we are a step closer to
providing those organizations who test for drugs a convenient, cost
effective, and less embarrassing alternative to current practices
while enhancing control over chain-of-custody,'' said John Morgan,
president and chief executive officer of Epitope.

The clearance of the oral fluid tests for cocaine, methamphetamine,
and cannabanoids are the first for the group of drugs that constitute
the NIDA-5. As the final members of the NIDA-5 are cleared, Epitope
intends to market combined drugs-of-abuse panels that will be tailored
to specific market needs using a single OraSure specimen in both the
United States and internationally. Epitope holds exclusive
distribution rights for the STC OraSure-based assays outside of the
United States.

In 1996, the worldwide market for laboratory-based drugs of abuse
screens was approximately $530 million, involving 35 million test
panels. Over 60% of worldwide test volume and sales revenue comes from
the United States. Use of the OraSure collection device for drug
testing offers many advantages over urine collection. OraSure specimen
collection offers an economic advantage since it can be performed in
any setting, thus avoiding the need for specially prepared collection
sites necessary to prevent the adulteration of urine. OraSure
collection also provides for better chain-of-custody than urine
because the collector, without embarrassment to the subject, can
observe the collection. An additional benefit of OraSure testing is
that the test result can be conclusively linked to the test subject
using DNA testing performed on the same sample used for drug
screening. This provides an accurate method for responding to legal
challenges that positive drug tests are invalid due to sample mix-up
at the laboratory.

Epitope believes that drug testing performed on OraSure samples will
be well received in all segments where drug testing is currently
performed. Due to the advantages listed above, OraSure-based drug
testing seems especially well suited for three testing segments 1)
government mandated drug testing, such as testing of transportation
workers (D.O.T.), defense contractors (D.O.D.), and other governmental
contractors; 2) forensic testing, including applications in the
criminal justice system, law enforcement, the courts, and
probation/parole programs, and 3) industrial testing for employment
and drug free workplace programs.

STC Technologies, Inc. is a privately held company that develops and
markets proprietary clinical diagnostic tests and medical devices for
use in clinical labs, physicians' offices, and worksite testing. Since
its founding in 1987, STC has twice been named to Inc. magazine's list
of the 500 fastest growing, privately held companies in America.

Epitope, Inc. is an Oregon based corporation that develops and markets
medical diagnostic products. Its current focus is on products that use
oral fluid in the detection of HIV infection, with emphasis in the
life insurance and public health market.

SOURCE: Epitope, Inc.

CONTACT: [4]Mary Hagen of Epitope, 503-641-6115

Pot Growers Misled Lawyer, Judge Rules - Everett Attorney's Role
Described As 'Troubling' ('The Herald' In Everett, Washington,
Continues Series About Ongoing Marijuana Cultivation Trial
In Which Federal Prosecutors Turned Attorney Mark Mestel's
Private Investigator Into A Confidential Informant Against Him
And His Clients - Now A Federal Judge Has Ruled That Two Marijuana Growers
Criminally Abused Their Relationship With The Everett Lawyer,
And In So Doing, Gave Up The Usual Protections
Of An Attorney-Client Relationship - Trial Resumes In June)

Date: Thu, 26 Feb 1998 19:26:29 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: Olafur Brentmar 
Subject: MN: US WA: Pot Growers Misled Lawyer, Judge Rules
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: John Smith
Pubdate: Thu 26 Feb. 1998
Source: The Herald, Everett, WA, USA
Contact: letters@heraldnet.com
WebPage: http://www.heraldnet.com
Author: Scott North, Herald Writer
Note: You can contact Scott North by phone at 425-339-3431 or you can
send e-mail to him at north@heraldnet.com. Comments can be sent
to newmedia@heraldnet.com

Pot growers misled lawyer, judge rules

Everett attorney's role described as 'troubling'

By SCOTT NORTH Herald Writer

SEATTLE -- Two admitted marijuana growers from Eastern Washington
criminally abused their relationship with an Everett lawyer, and in so
doing, gave up the usual protections of an attorney-client
relationship, a federal judge ruled Wednesday.

Gregory Haynes and James Denton in 1994 took advantage of the
attorney-client relationship with lawyer Mark Mestel to hide their
involvement in marijuana growing operations in Stanwood and in the
tiny community of Warden near Moses Lake, U.S. District Court Judge
Thomas Zilly ruled.

Along with other members of the pot growing ring, the pair conspired
to have Mestel file fraudulent documents in an attempt to mislead the
government about who bankrolled the Stanwood pot farm, which was
discovered when it caught fire in May 1994, the judge ruled.

Federal prosecutors last summer charged Haynes, Denton and others with
conspiracy and money laundering after law officers unearthed another
large pot farm, this time buried beneath a Grant County alfalfa field.

Zilly said after listening to more than four days of testimony he
found much that was "troubling," including Mestel's role.

"I don't think they (the defendants) gave Mestel all the facts," Zilly
said. "They certainly gave him a lot. I think more than Mr. Mestel was
willing to admit."

Attorneys for Haynes and Denton had asked Zilly to dismiss the case,
arguing the government erred in 1996 when it recruited Dale Fairbanks,
a former private investigator, to help investigate the pot growers.

Most of the investigation's targets had previously been represented by
Mestel, for whom Fairbanks had regularly worked as an investigator.

Haynes attorney Allen Ressler said the government's use of Fairbanks
had "undermined the appearance of fairness" and tainted the
government's investigation so much that all evidence should be thrown

He said Fairbanks' insider knowledge of the pot growing operation
stemmed from the attorney-client relationship.

To make their case, defense attorneys had Haynes and Denton testify
about how they made thousands of dollars growing and selling marijuana
and cleaning up the cash through legitimate business investments.

The pair contended that Mestel was paid thousands of dollars to
represent ring members, and that they were open with their lawyer
about the illegal deals.

Haynes also testified he supplied Mestel with small amounts of
marijuana, including an alleged face-to-face delivery in Cle Elum in
1995, when Haynes said he put pot in a baseball hat for Mestel.

Mestel testified last week that Haynes had, unbidden, sent him
marijuana on a couple of occasions. He insisted he threw away, or
turned away, the drugs and flatly denied receiving pot in a hat.

Zilly noted that both Haynes and Fairbanks were present for the Cle
Elum meeting, and offered substantially similar testimony about the
incident. As for the other deliveries, "I'm satisfied that Mr. Mestel
knew about it, or had some conversations with him (Haynes) about it,"
the judge said.

Mestel has not been charged. When told of the judge's comments, Mestel
said: "I stand by my testimony."

The judge said he was troubled by the government's decision to use
Fairbanks in the case, but he also was impressed by the steps
investigators took to not undermine the confidential relationship
Mestel had with other clients.

"I am satisfied the government diligently and vigorously" maintained
its focus on ongoing criminal activity, not protected by the
attorney-client privilege, Zilly said.

The judge said he may throw out some evidence Fairbanks supplied, but
only if he clearly learned it before 1996.

A June trial is scheduled.

Commentary On The Mestel Matter By Seattle Attorney Jeff Steinborn
(List Subscriber Forwards Message Suggesting 'The Real Issue Is What Happens
When A Lawyer's Investigator Becomes A Snitch?')

Date: Tue, 3 Mar 1998 12:55:04 -0800 (PST)
From: Robert Lunday 
To: hemp-talk@hemp.net, november-l@november.org
Subject: Re: HT: pot growers lawyer screws them over (fwd)
Sender: owner-hemp-talk@hemp.net

Thanks Jeff for clarifying.

--- Forwarded message --
Date: Tue, 3 Mar 1998 12:07:44 -0800
From: Jeff Steinborn (surlaw@email.msn.com)
To: Robert Lunday (robert@hemp.net)
Subject: Re: HT: pot growers lawyer screws them over

Hello, Robert. Please post this around

Here's a bit more on the Mestel matter. Maybe I can clear up a bit of
the confusion. Mark is known as the most effective lawyer in Snohomish
county, a reputation he has earned and deserves. He is very tough and very
professional. The issue here is not whether you can trust your lawyer.
Mestel has never given testimony against a client, and, I am sure, he never

The real issue is what happens when a lawyer's investigator becomes a
snitch? We work very closely with our investigators, and we do advise our
clients that anything they tell our investigators is just as privileged as
if they told it to us. None of us in the defense bar can understand how
Judge Zilly could approve a relationship that left the protection of the
attorney-client privilege essentially in the hands of a government
informant. Does the fox get to watch the chicken coop? Not in a system
that is supposed to be fair.

The other issue is when are you no longer safe in relying on the lawyer
client privilege? This privilege does not evaporate when the client
"misleads" the lawyer. It does, however, evaporate when the client commits
some criminal act and lets the lawyer know about it, or involves the lawyer
in a crime. This is generally referred to as the "crime fraud" exception to
the attorney client privilege.

In the Mestel case, as I understand it, the defendants, without
consulting with Mestel, decided to include Mestel's investigator among those
who were allowed to know about their ongoing marijuana farm. The
discussion of ongoing or future crime is not a privileged communication -
whether made to an investigator or a lawyer.

So to summarize: yes the Mestel matter is troubling. But not because
of Mark's conduct or because the attorney client privilege is easily brushed
aside. What is troubling is that the government financed an investigation
which put a government agent directly in the middle of the attorney client
relationship, and left the guarding of that relationship to the person whose
interest it is to violate it. We are still safe to talk to our attorneys, just
so we don't tell them about crimes we are committing or about to commit.

Jeff Steinborn

--Original Message--
From:+ Robert Lunday 
To: Darral Good 
Cc: hemp-talk@hemp.net 
Date: Friday, February 27, 1998 11:01 AM
Subject: Re: HT: pot growers lawyer screws them over

>The case of Mark Mestel, has been a confusing one, but it seems a bit
>troubling that if someone "misleads" their lawyer that all of a sudden the
>attorney-client relationship is thrown out the door and the lawyer can
>become a narc. In fact I think it sets a dangerous precedent. If a
>laywer could say that his client "mislead" him, (perhaps he moved and
>failed to notify his lawyer of his new address?), and then turn around and
>testify using information he got based on the attorney-client priviledge,
>than how can you trust your own laywer?
>One thing I would bet money on. If this case was not drug related ... say
>it was a case of embezzling or some other white-collar crime ... than
>that testimony probably would have denied. But since it's drugs, and
>theirs a war on, than you either stretch the law, or simple change it. As
>long as you get the bad guys.
>On Thu, 26 Feb 1998, Darral Good wrote:
>> Pot growers misled lawyer, judge rules
>> Everett attorney's role described as 'troubling'
>> By SCOTT NORTH Herald Writer
>> SEATTLE -- Two admitted marijuana growers from Eastern Washington
>> criminally abused their relationship with an Everett lawyer, and in so
>> doing, gave up the usual protections of an attorney-client

Jail And Annex Are Overflowing With Inmates - With Many Sleeping On Floors,
County Is Searching For Solutions (Tacoma 'News Tribune' Update
On Failure Of Drug Policy In Thurston County, Washington,
Where The Possibility Of Lawsuits For Overcrowding Has Jail Officials
Studying An Early Release Program Imposed By A Federal Judge
On Multnomah County, Oregon, In 1987, After Inmates Sued
Over Inhumane Conditions)

From: "W.H.E.N." 
To: "-Hemp Talk" 
Subject: HT: Jail and annex are overflowing with inmates
Date: Thu, 26 Feb 1998 20:18:06 -0800
Sender: owner-hemp-talk@hemp.net

Jail and annex are overflowing with inmates
With many sleeping on floors, county is searching for solutions

Karen Hucks
The News Tribune (Tacoma, Washington)

Less than a year after Thurston County opened an annex to relieve jail
overcrowding, it is considering an early release program because it has
more inmates than ever.

"I've been here almost 20 years, and I've never seen anything like this,"
Sheriff's Capt. Ben Tarver said Wednesday.

On Tuesday, the jail and its annex held 423 inmates, and 63 others were in
alternative programs that did not require jail beds, said Mark Bolton,
associate jail administrator. The jail and annex have 358 bunks.

On at least one day last week, the total soared to nearly 500.

Three inmates are packed in cells that have only two bunks. Some inmates
sleep on mats on the floor next to urinals, while others sleep in the
secure common area outside cells. There aren't enough places to sit and

County officials say they aren't certain why jail populations seem to peak
at this time of year, but do say that this year it is higher than ever.

The county is looking at "every solution in the world now," undersheriff
Neil McClanahan said, including hiring more officers, renting space in the
King or Yakima county jails and talking to arresting officers to make sure
they don't unnecessarily book people into jail.

And all the while, the American Civil Liberties Union is "breathing down my
neck," McClanahan said.

The ACLU is investigating dozens of inmate complaints about inhumane
conditions, said Julya Hampton, director of the group's legal program in

"When you have so many people who are sleeping right next to the urinals
and another prisoner wakes up and has to go to the bathroom, what does that
mean?" Hampton said. "That means you're going to get sprayed with urine."

Thurston isn't the first county to face a possible lawsuit over a crowded
jail. Inmates sued Pierce County in 1995, and reached a settlement that
limits the number of prisoners in the jail on any day.

And it is the early release program in Multnomah County, Oregon - imposed
by a federal judge in 1987 after inmates sued - that Thurston County is
studying for its own jail, officials said. The county includes Portland.

There, inmates are assigned points based on their danger to the community.
When the jail reaches its maximum number of inmates, those with the lowest
values are released.

Within the next two weeks, Thurston County will run a computer simulation
on its jail population based on Multnomah County's program, said Tom Ball,
the county's director of probation.

"We're going to look at one day of our jail population and assign points to
all those people and just see what would happen," Ball said. "We're just
trying to see who would come up with the lowest values and see how
palatable this is."

The county also is planning to send a team soon to Portland to visit with
Multnomah County officials, Bolton said.

Inmates have been sleeping on the floor for weeks, and some say they are
forced to take cold showers because there's not enough hot water.

"It's totally unsanitary," said Jon Schiebel, 21, who is serving a year for
a probation violation on a theft charge. "When I was on the floor I'd wake
up with lint balls in my mouth."

Crowding creates tension among the inmates, too.

"The decibel level is so high that you can't even hear yourself think,"
said inmate Russ Big Eagle, 33. "You've got people yelling, and then you've
got people wanting to beat each other to death."

Inmates also say that medical services are lacking at the jail.

However, Marla Fredericks, a nurse and the health services administrator
for the jail, said inmates get medical treatment immediately for
emergencies and within a week for nonemergencies.

The overcrowded jail also is a problem for corrections officers, because
tensions are high and fearful inmates are crafting more weapons.

"We're looking at the staff safety," McClanahan said. "We're sorry for
these folks being in jail, but darn it, most of them are in there because
they made a stupid decision. But the staff - they're down there to do a

Officers are working mandatory 12-hour shifts, are being forced to delay
vacations and are getting sick more often, jail officials said.

In the past year, the county opened its annex for 92 low-risk offenders and
started a day-reporting program in which inmates live at home and check in
at the jail before going to their jobs. The county also increased
electronic home monitoring, work-release and community service programs.

Within two years, the county will open a 300-bed regional jail in Tumwater,
said Linda Hoffman, the county's chief administrative officer. But that
won't solve the current problem of massive overcrowding, she acknowledged.

The ACLU's Hampton said the jail's housing situation is not the kind that
most courts would consider humane or civilized.

"When the state decides it has to lock people up, that's fine," she said.
"But when you do that, you've got to provide basic minimum standards of

"And when you have a facility that's as crowded as the Thurston County Jail
appears to be, it does have an effect on its ability to provide a minimum
of services."


Staff writer Karen Hucks covers Thurston County. Reach her at
1-800-388-8742, Ext. 8660, or by e-mail at kxh@p.tribnet.com

House Panel Against Medical Use Of Marijuana ('Arizona Daily Star'
Says Yesterday A US House Crime Subcommittee Chaired By Republican
Bill McCollum Of Florida Approved Non-Binding Resolution
That Would Put Congress On Record Against Medical Marijuana,
As If It Wasn't Already)

To: mattalk@listserv.islandnet.com
From: arandell@islandnet.com (Alan Randell)
Subject: House panel against medical use of marijuana
Newshawk: Alan Randell
Pubdate: February 26, 1998
Source: Arizona Daily Star
Contact: letters@azstarnet.com

URL: http://www.azstarnet.com/public/dnews/080-

Thursday, 26 February 1998

House panel against medical use of marijuana

Congressional Quarterly

WASHINGTON - A House Judiciary subcommittee yesterday
approved a non-binding resolution that would put Congress
on record against the legalization of marijuana for
medical purposes.

Crime subcommittee Chairman Bill McCollum, R-Fla., said
Congress needed to act in the wake of recent state
initiatives that allowed doctors to recommend marijuana to

California and Arizona voters decided in 1996 to permit
physicians to prescribe or recommend marijuana to treat
various maladies ranging from AIDS to nausea from cancer
chemotherapy to painful pressure on the eyes caused by
glaucoma. Supporters of legalization say that in many
cases, marijuana is the only drug patients can tolerate to
relieve their symptoms.

But McCollum said that allowing marijuana use, even among
terminally ill patients, sends a message to youngsters
that marijuana is not dangerous. McCollum said marijuana
has a high potential for abuse and can break down the
immune system.

Federal law bars the use and possession of marijuana,
without exception. The federal government currently
considers marijuana to have no scientific use, and federal
and state studies are generally prohibited from using
taxpayer funds to study the effects of the drug, medicinal
or otherwise.

The Supply Question (Dave Fratello Of Americans For Medical Rights,
Sponsors Of Restrictive Medical Marijuana Ballot Initiatives
In Several States, Gives AMR's Rationale For Not Including
Legal Distribution Clauses In Initiative Texts)

Date: Thu, 26 Feb 1998 15:09:11 EST
Originator: drctalk@drcnet.org
Sender: drctalk@drcnet.org
From: Dave Fratello (104730.1000@compuserve.com)
To: Multiple recipients of list 
Subject: The supply question

Admittedly, we have resisted commenting on this for some time, but it seems
that with expiration of the 215/CBC case in state court, and the ongoing
actions against California CBCs, by now, both sides fully understand the
issues. It is worth explaining why AMR and its affiliates have chosen the
course they have on the issue of legal supply systems.

There is a good reason that no state initiative supported by AMR has a
distribution system -- to create one runs an unacceptably high risk of
endangering and losing the entire initiative. Federal law is likely to be
held supreme on an issue of legal distribution. That is the best advice we
have gotten, and there is really no other side to the argument. The same
issue, now confronted by the lawyers defending the 6 California clubs
against the feds' civil action, looks like a loser, though there are
certainly interesting arguments to be made.

The drafters of 215, including folks involved in distribution, fully
understood this reality of state/federal conflict, and they kept 215
limited for that reason. Prop. 215 was challenged by the federal government
only through indirect means, not through the court system, as were other
initiatives passed by California voters in the same election. This was not
because of any lack of animosity by the feds, but because they understood
that there was no positive conflict with federal law embodied by 215's

The fact is, distribution is a matter of local option, not something that
can reasonably be done in state or even municipal law. If you try to create
protections for supply in a state law, you not only risk losing the law in
federal court but, in the real world, you will give false hope to people
who set up shop thinking they're protected, and end up in federal prison.

The best protections for distribution come from state and local officials
knowing their constituents support medical marijuana, and from
transparent, honest, non-profit operations coming forth and handling the
dicey and difficult task of getting medicine to the people who need it.
There is no question that the real heroes in this fight are those who put
themselves on the line to handle distribution, and they deserve quality
protection. But the sad conclusion here is that there is no true safe haven
until federal law changes. I think we're all trying to get there, while we
help protect patients in individual states as well.

-- dave fratello

Court Clears Way For Closure Of Marijuana Clubs ('Associated Press'
Recaps Yesterday's News About California Supreme Court Letting Stand
December Ruling To Shut Medical Cannabis Dispensaries
As Ineligible Primary Caregivers)

Subj: US CA: Wire FLASH: Court Clears Way For Closure Of Marijuana Clubs
From: David Hadorn, Marcus-Mermelstein Family and Dave Fratello
Date: Wed, 25 Feb 1998 23:18:08 -0500
Newshawk: David Hadorn, Marcus-Mermelstein Family and Dave Fratello
Source: Associated Press
Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998
Editor's note: Sad news, indeed, in this item provided by these three
newshawks. Please be alert for the newspaper stories and editorials which
are sure to follow, and send them to editor@mapinc.org - Thank you.
Richard Lake, Sr. Editor


SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- The state Supreme Court cleared the way Wednesday for
possible closure of all medical marijuana clubs in California, leaving
intact a lower-court ruling that the clubs can't sell the drug despite a
1996 voter initiative.

The court unanimously denied review of an appellate decision, issued last
December, that said Proposition 215 did not allow anyone to sell marijuana
and did not allow a commercial enterprise to furnish marijuana as a
``primary caregiver.''

The appellate ruling is now binding on trial courts statewide.

Dennis Peron, author of Proposition 215 and founder of the San Francisco
enterprise now called the Cannabis Cultivators Club, insisted Wednesday
that the club was no longer selling marijuana but was merely being
reimbursed for cultivation costs, and was in compliance with the ruling.

But if courts disagree and order a shutdown, ``we're going to stay here
until the tanks come,'' he said.

The state's lawyer in the case said he would ask a San Francisco judge on
Thursday to order Peron's club closed, and expected closure of all such
operations in California as a result of the ruling.

``Voters did not intend to allow commercial enterprises to sell narcotics,
like Mr. Peron's doing,'' said John Gordnier, a senior assistant attorney

Federal prosecutors have also asked a federal judge to shut down Peron's
club and five others, saying they are violating federal law against the
possession and sale of marijuana, regardless of Proposition 215.

Proposition 215, passed in November 1996, allows possession and cultivation
of marijuana upon a doctor's recommendation to ease the pain and nausea of
AIDS, cancer, glaucoma and other conditions.

Peron's club, then called the Cannabis Buyers' Club, had been raided three
months earlier by Lungren's agents, who said marijuana was being sold to
people without doctors' prescriptions. They got a judge to shut it down,
but it was reopened in January 1997 by Superior Court Judge David Garcia,
who said Proposition 215 allowed a nonprofit organization to sell marijuana
to patients who had named the club as their ``primary caregiver.''

But the 1st District Court of Appeal overruled Garcia last December and
said state law prohibits anyone, including a nonprofit organization, from
selling marijuana or possessing it for sale.

``The intent of the initiative was to allow persons to cultivate and
possess a sufficient amount of marijuana for their own approved medical
purposes, and to allow `primary caregivers' the same authority to act on
behalf of those patients too ill or bedridden to do so,'' said the opinion
by Presiding Justice J. Clinton Peterson.

He said the only way a patient can obtain marijuana legally is to grow it
or obtain it from a primary caregiver who has grown it.

A primary caregiver -- defined by the initiative as an individual,
designated by the patient, ``who has consistently assumed responsibility
for the housing, health, or safety of that person'' -- cannot be a
commercial enterprise like the Cannabis Buyers' Club, Peterson said.

The vote was 3-0 to reinstate the closure order. But one appellate justice,
J. Anthony Kline, said the ruling was written too broadly and might make it
impossible for many seriously ill patients to obtain marijuana.

Peron said Wednesday the club had changed its operations because of a
statement in Peterson's ruling that a caregiver, while barred from selling
marijuana, could be reimbursed for the cost of cultivation.

``We're being reimbursed for the marijuana we cultivate legally as
caregivers for these people who have letters from their doctors,'' he said.

``It may be against the law to sell marijuana but it's morally wrong to let
someone die, and we are saving lives here,'' Peron added.

Gordnier, the state's lawyer, said the club is ineligible to be a primary
caregiver and therefore cannot operate legally under the court's ruling.

The case is People vs. Peron, S067387.

Judge's Order Closes Marijuana Club (Different 'Associated Press' Version)

Subj: US CA: Wire: Judge's Order Closes Marijuana Club
From: Marcus-Mermelstein Family 
Date: Fri, 27 Feb 1998 07:42:08 -0500
Newshawk: Marcus-Mermelstein Family 
Source: Associated Press
Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998


SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- A judge ordered a San Francisco medical marijuana
club to shut down Thursday, a day after a ruling against such clubs took
effect statewide.

But a lawyer for the San Francisco Cannabis Cultivators Club say it is not
breaking the law and does not plan to stop operation.

`We are abiding by the law,'' said J. David Nick, lawyer for Dennis Peron
- -- founder of the club and author medical marijuana initiative approved by
voters in November 1996.

Nick said the club's distribution of marijuana to patients complied with
the state appeals court ruling and Thursday's injunction. But Attorney
General Dan Lungren said the injunction requires the club to close its doors.

On Wednesday, the California Supreme Court denied review of an appellate
ruling in December that said the initiative did not allow marijuana clubs
to sell the drug to patients. The ruling also said a commercial operation
such as a club cannot be a ``primary caregiver'' authorized to furnish

But some of the state's 20 club operators, including Peron, say they are
not violating the order because they don't sell marijuana, they simply give
it to patients who reimburse them for the cost of cultivating it.

San Francisco Superior Court Judge David Garcia issued a preliminary
injunction Thursday drafted by Lungren's office. It prohibits Peron from
selling, furnishing or giving away marijuana to anyone unless he qualifies
as a ``primary caregiver.''

The initiative allows possession and cultivation of marijuana upon a
doctor's recommendation to ease the pain and nausea of AIDS, cancer,
glaucoma and other conditions. Patients can grow the drug themselves or
obtain it from a primary caregiver, defined as one who has ``consistently
assumed responsibility for the housing, health or safety'' of the patient.

Peron says the more than 8,000 patients who belong to his club have
designated him as their primary caregiver.

But the 1st District Court of Appeal ruled that state law prohibits anyone
from selling marijuana or possessing it for sale. The court also said
Peron's club, a commercial enterprise open to anyone who came in with a
doctor's recommendation, did not qualify as a primary caregiver.

Nick said he would argue the issue at an April 3 hearing on a permanent
injunction. Meanwhile, he said, the club ``will continue to serve the sick
and dying at all costs.''

State Top Court Clears Way To Shut Medical Pot Clubs
('San Francisco Chronicle' Version Notes Attorney General Lungren
Will Ask San Francisco Superior Court Judge David Garcia Today To Issue
An Injunction To Close Down More Than 20 Cannabis Clubs Across State)

Date: Fri, 27 Feb 1998 17:00:18 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: jwjohnson@netmagic.net (Joel W. Johnson)
Subject: MN: US CA: State Top Court Clears Way to Shut Medical Pot Clubs
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: Joel W. Johnson (jwjohnson@netmagic.net)
Source: San Francisco Chronicle
Contact: chronletters@sfgate.com
Website: http://www.sfgate.com/chronicle/
Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998
Author: Aurelio Rojas, Chronicle Staff Writer


The California Supreme Court left intact a lower-court ruling yesterday
that could allow the state to close down all medical marijuana clubs.

The high court's action set the stage for Attorney General Dan Lungren to
follow through on his promise to shutter the clubs.

A spokesman for Lungren said the attorney general will ask San Francisco
Superior Court Judge David Garcia today to issue an injunction to close
down the more than 20 cannabis clubs across the state.

By declining to review a ruling by the First District Court of Appeal, the
high court let stand a decision that Proposition 215 allows only ``primary
caregivers'' to furnish pot.

``We're pleased with the court's decision not to hear this case,'' said
Matt Ross, a spokesman for the attorney general. ``This means the court has
agreed with our office.''

Lungren, a Republican who is running for governor, contends that the clubs
have been selling pot without doctors' prescriptions. The 1996 ballot
initiative allows for possession and cultivation of marijuana upon a
doctor's recommendation to ease the pain and nausea of AIDS, cancer,
glaucoma and other conditions.

In a brief order, the state Supreme Court declined to review the lower
court's ruling against the Cannabis Cultivators Club in San Francisco. The
club, founded by Dennis Peron, believed it was entitled under Proposition
215 to act as a ``primary caregiver'' and to furnish marijuana to
customers. The appeals court defined a primary caregiver as one who has
consistently assumed responsibility for the housing, health or safety of a
patient and said it cannot be an enterprise like the Cannabis Cultivators

Peron, who authored the landmark initiative, said he will continue to press
his legal fight. The appellate court ruling, he said, allows cannabis clubs
to act as ``caregivers for cultivation purposes.'' ``We've stopped selling
marijuana,'' Peron said, noting that his club has changed its name from
Cannabis Buyers' Club to the Cannabis Cultivators Club. ``Now, were being
reimbursed for our costs. There's a semantical difference.''

The appeals court ruled that the only way a patient can obtain marijuana
legally is to grow it or obtain it from a primary caregiver who has grown
it. The court said primary caregivers may receive compensation for the cost
of growing marijuana for authorized patients.

``Voters did not intend to allow commercial enterprises to sell narcotics,
like Mr. Peron's doing,'' said John Gordnier, an assistant attorney general.

Gordnier said Peron's club is ineligible under the law to be a primary

Peron, who is also seeking the GOP gubernatorial nomination, said tampering
with Proposition 215 is ``like rescinding civil rights legislation.''

``People who are sick are not going to go back to sitting in the back of
the bus,'' he said. ``They're not going to go out into the street to get
their medicine just because the state wants to use technicalities.''

Ruling By Top Court May Shut Pot Clubs ('San Francisco Examiner' Version
Notes San Francisco District Attorney Terence Hallinan Has No Plans
To Shut Down Peron's Club)

Date: Fri, 27 Feb 1998 16:57:09 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: jwjohnson@netmagic.net (Joel W. Johnson)
Subject: MN: US CA: Ruling By Top Court May Shut Pot Clubs
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: Joel W. Johnson (jwjohnson@netmagic.net)
Source: San Francisco Examiner (CA)
Contact: letters@examiner.com
Website: http://www.examiner.com/
Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998
Author: Tyche Hendricks of the Examiner Staff


But patrons vow fight, and DA won't aid closure in S.F.

Through a cloud of marijuana smoke, patrons at the San Francisco Cannabis
Cultivator's Club voiced their outrage and dismay over a state Supreme
Court decision that could lead to the closure of all medical marijuana
clubs in California.

"If this club closes, I will be out here protesting. I will go to jail,"
said Wayne Justmann, 53, a volunteer at the club who is HIV positive. "What
kind of society would allow this to happen? There are a lot of sick people
here, going through a lot of pain."

Justmann was responding to news Wednesday that the state Supreme Court had
unanimously let stand an appellate court decision, issued last December,
that said Proposition 215, the 1996 medical marijuana initiative, did not
allow anyone to sell marijuana and did not allow a commercial outfit to
furnish marijuana as a "primary caregiver" to sick people.

The appellate ruling is now binding on trial courts statewide.

Dennis Peron, founder of the San Francisco club, and author of Prop. 215,
insisted that his operation complied with the appellate decision.

"We're not selling; we're cultivating for others" he said, explaining that
the group merely accepted reimbursement for cultivation costs, and that it
had changed its name from the Cannabis Buyers Club to conform with the
appellate ruling. "This is not going to affect our operations one bit."

"If they do try to arrest me," he went on, passionately, "I assure you
eight or nine thousand people here will not let them, will not go to the
back of the bus."

A spokesman for Attorney General Dan Lungren said the state would ask a San
Francisco judge on Thursday to order Peron's club closed.

"We'd like to move forward with reinstating the full injunction" to shut
the cannabis club, said spokesman Rob Stutzman.

The ruling by the state Court of Appeal, and Wednesday's state Supreme
Court decision not to review it, stem from a civil case brought by the
attorney general against Peron's club. The state got a judge to shut the
club, but it was reopened in January 1997 after the passage of Prop. 215 by
Superior Court Judge David Garcia.

The proposition, which was passed in November 1996, allows possession and
cultivation of marijuana upon a doctor's recommendation to ease the pain
and nausea of AIDS, cancer, glaucoma and other conditions.

Garcia said the measure allowed a nonprofit organization to sell marijuana
to patients who had named the club as their "primary caregiver."

However, the 1st District Court of Appeal overruled Garcia last December
and said state law prohibited anyone, including a nonprofit organization,
from selling marijuana or possessing it for sale.

Presiding Justice J. Clinton Peterson wrote that the only way a patient
could obtain marijuana legally was to grow it or obtain it from a primary
caregiver who had grown it.

A primary caregiver - defined by the initiative as an individual who has
consistently assumed responsibility for the housing, health of safety of
the patient - cannot be a commercial enterprise like the cannabis club,
Peterson said.

An aid to relaxation

Wednesday evening, patrons of the Cannabis Cultivators Club considered the
club's future.

"If this place didn't exist, it would be hard. I'd have to find another
source," said Larry, 51, who lost both his legs to a blood disease that led
to gangrene. "Marijuana helps me relax. It controls the spasms in my legs."
He didn't want his last name used.

The attorney general hopes the action by the court will pave the way for
the closure of the dozens of cannabis clubs around California.

"We think this means local law enforcement around the state should be
advising clubs they should cease to operate," said Stutzman. "If they
continue to operate, they should close them down."

But San Francisco District Attorney Terence Hallinan has no plans to shut
down Peron's club.

"It's still up in the air. We have to wait and see what Garcia's going to
do," he said. "Lungren will try to shut down Peron's club, but we're trying
to work out our own medical approach for San Francisco."

Hallinan said he and Supervisor Tom Ammiano had requested that the Board of
Supervisors develop rules to regulate cannabis clubs as medical centers.

Order Is Aimed At Closing San Francisco Operation (Lengthy
'San Jose Mercury News' Version Says Most Medical Cannabis Dispensaries
Across California Are Unlikely To Close Anytime Soon)

Date: Fri, 27 Feb 1998 15:56:48 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: jwjohnson@netmagic.net (Joel W. Johnson)
Subject: MN: US CA: Order is Aimed At Closing San Fransisco Operation
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: Marcus-Mermelstein Family 
Source: San Jose Mercury News (CA)
Contact: letters@sjmercury.com
Website: http://www.sjmercury.com/
Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998
Author: Howard Mintz - Mercury News Staff Writer


Pot clubs may survive despite order by top court

The California Supreme Court on Wednesday clouded the future of the state's
medicinal marijuana clubs, upholding a lower court ruling that would shut
down the San Francisco operation of Proposition 215 author Dennis Peron.

But despite the high court's action and predictions by California Attorney
General Dan Lungren, most marijuana clubs across the state are unlikely to
close anytime soon. In fact, such clubs as the Santa Clara County Medical
Cannabis Center in San Jose and Oakland's Cannabis Buyers' Cooperative are
expected to survive for now -- in large part by distancing themselves from
the way Peron's Cannabis Cultivators Club does business.

``I don't think there is an easy, fast answer,'' said Santa Clara County
Assistant District Attorney Karyn Sinunu, whose office has permitted the
San Jose club to operate under strict regulations. ``But I don't think
anything is going to be the death knell for medicinal marijuana.''

Added Jim McClelland, chief financial officer of the Oakland pot center:
``If I were a betting man, I'd say not much will come of this. Lungren will
try to use it as leverage to close all the clubs, and I don't think he'll
be successful in doing that.''

Lungren's office did vow to move quickly to close down Peron's operation,
and a state lawyer said the Supreme Court decision warrants a ban on all
such clubs throughout California.

But as recently as last month, Lungren backed off on threats to use the
Peron court case to seek the closing of other marijuana clubs. And it
remains to be seen whether he is willing to force the issue in places such
as San Jose, where law enforcement officials have backed the clubs.

California voters in November 1996 approved Proposition 215, which allows
the possession and cultivation of marijuana if its use is approved by a

Since then, medicinal marijuana operations have opened in more than a dozen
cities throughout the state, offering the drug to people suffering from the
pain and nausea associated with such diseases as AIDS and cancer.

Peron's club has been ground zero in the battle over medicinal marijuana
from the start, with Lungren targeting the outspoken medicinal pot advocate
for flouting the state's drug laws. Critics have alleged that Peron has not
maintained the level of controls on the distribution of marijuana at his
clubs that exists in other operations. Peron has defended his club and its
role in helping the sick obtain medicinal pot.

Order rekindles dispute

The state's high court rekindled the furor over the clubs with Wednesday's
brief order, which let stand a December ruling by the San Francisco-based
1st District Court of Appeal. In that ruling, a three-justice panel found
that Proposition 215 did not permit commercial operations to sell

In language that has now been endorsed by the state Supreme Court, the 1st
District said the intent of Proposition 215 ``was to allow persons to
cultivate and possess a sufficient amount of marijuana for their own
approved medical purposes, and to allow `primary caregivers' the same
authority to act on behalf of those patients too ill or bedridden to do

The appellate court concluded that clubs such as Peron's do not qualify as
a ``primary caregiver.''

But other club operators around the Bay Area say they believe they can
survive the legal test established under the ruling, an argument expected
to be used to fight attempts to shut them.

``This case dealt with a specific situation and said this situation isn't
allowed,'' said Oakland lawyer William Panzer, who represents clubs in
Oakland, Marin and Ventura. ``No, it doesn't shut down the clubs.''

Official doesn't foresee problem

Peter Baez, head of the Santa Clara County medicinal marijuana center on
Meridian Avenue, agreed.

``I think (the Peron case) is going to have a big impact on Lungren's
ability to selectively close down the cannabis centers,'' Baez said. ``But
if you play by the rules, I think you are going to be OK.''

According to lawyers following the issue, the bigger legal challenges to
the clubs' existence are pending federal court lawsuits filed last month by
the U.S. Justice Department.

Those cases seek to shut six Northern California clubs -- San Jose's is not
among them -- arguing that federal drug laws foreclose the clubs' ability
to sell marijuana under the ballot initiative, regardless of whether it is
for medicinal purposes.

San Francisco U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer, who is hearing all six
cases, is expected to consider the federal government's case in March.

Lawyers for the pot clubs predict that the Justice Department will try to
use the state court ruling to its advantage.

Peron, meanwhile, pledged Wednesday to keep his club open ``until the tanks
come in.''

Peron maintains his club has operated differently since the passage of
Proposition 215 and that the court case has dealt with how he distributed
marijuana before the initiative went into effect.

``They defined the parameters of Prop. 215,'' Peron said of the appellate
court ruling. ``We've been in accordance with the law for some time. That's
what I envisioned when I wrote the law.''

Local Schools See Rise In Use Of Drugs, Alcohol ('San Jose Mercury News'
Says Second Annual California Safe Schools Assessment Report
From California Department Of Education Notes Alcohol- And Other Drug-Related
Offenses Declined 6 Percent Statewide Last Year - Increase Of 9 Percent
In San Mateo County Partly Attributed To Zealously Enforced
'Zero Tolerance' Policy)

Date: Fri, 27 Feb 1998 16:04:02 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: jwjohnson@netmagic.net (Joel W. Johnson)
Subject: MN: US CA: Local Schools See Rise In Use of Drugs, Alcohol
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: Marcus-Mermelstein Family (mmfamily@ix.netcom.com)
Source: San Jose Mercury New (CA)
Contact: letters@sjmercury.com
Website: http://www.sjmercury.com/
Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998
Author: Bryan Monroe - Mercury News Staff Writer


While schools around the state are reporting drop in many crimes on campus,
drug and alcohol use is on the rise in Santa Clara County and San Mateo
County schools, according to a report released today.

``We are actually seeing a sense of progress toward safer and better
schools,'' said Delaine Eastin, state superintendent of public instruction.

``When crime goes down, student achievement goes up.''

In its second annual California Safe Schools Assessment report, the
California Department of Education said that drug- and alcohol-related
offense rate declined by 6 percent statewide last year. Fights and other
batteries dropped by 7 percent while the cost of vandalism fell by 3

In San Mateo County, drug and alcohol offenses are up 9 percent. But
reports of battery were down 11 percent last year. During the 1996-97
school year, there were also 43 reported assaults with deadly weapons at
county schools, down 18 percent from the year before.

A San Mateo Union High School official said that the district's first look
at the numbers showed a definite improvement over last year's baseline
figures. But to do a straight-across comparison is not necessarily fair,
said Sam Johnson, associate superintendent for human resources and
administrative services.

The district strictly enforces a ``zero tolerance'' policy and the study's
numbers reflect that, he said. Other districts might not have such a policy
or enforce it as toughly as does San Mateo Union, he said.

The district has other indicators that reflect how the community feels
about the job it's doing to make safe schools, Johnson said. ``There are
anywhere from 200 to 300 families trying to come into this district via the
interdistrict transfer process. That's a clear indication to us we're doing
something right.''

In Santa Clara County, some districts bucked the statewide trend. Campbell
Union High School District led the county in drug and alcohol offenses and
reported more than three times the state average of batteries.

``We're obviously concerned about our rate, but you have to realize that we
are simply reflecting society,'' said Bruce Hauger, superintendent.

Drug, alcohol offenses

San Jose Unified had the highest rates of drug and alcohol offenses among
the county's unified districts. Officials said they have improved their
reporting procedures in the district, but that the 81 percent increase in
that area still has them concerned. ``This is not something we take
lightly,'' said Maureen Munroe, spokeswoman for the district.

Statewide, while some violent crimes against students and others appear to
be dropping, others are on the rise. Assaults with a deadly weapon shot up
17 percent last year.

Vandalism, graffiti, arson, and theft remain the largest sources of crime
in California schools. But the numbers reported also declined by 8 percent
during the 1996-97 school year. Still, those property crimes cost schools
$22.6 million last year.

In 1995, the state Legislature passed a law requiring all school districts
and counties to compile uniform statistics on school crime. This is the
second year the reports has been issued.

The validity of the data came under criticism last year, as many districts
struggled to find the most accurate way report to their crime rates.

This year, the state set up special training sessions for districts and
established a toll-free number that districts could call for technical

``We anticipated that there would be some growing pains,'' said Jerry
Hardenburg of the state Department of Education, ``But we certainly have a
feeling that it is improving.''

Better at reporting crimes

But some Santa Clara County officials wonder if their crime has really gone
up or if, after two years of reporting, districts have just gotten better
at reporting it.

``If you were to say there is an 85 percent increase in people running red
lights,'' said San Jose Unified's Munroe, ``would you say there is an
increase in the incidents or really an increase in the fact that officers
are catching them?''

Mercury News reporter S.L. Wykes contributed to this report.

IF YOU'RE INTERESTED The complete California Safe Schools Assessment report
is available online at www.cde.ca.gov/spbranch/safety/safetyhome.html

Turning The Tide On Juvenile Crime (Joanne Jacobs' Editorial Column
In 'San Jose Mercury News' Examines Violent And Repeat Juvenile Offender Act
Introduced To Congress By Republican US Senators Orrin Hatch Of Utah,
Jeff Sessions Of Alabama, Which Would Allow 14-Year-Olds To Be Tried
As Adults And Locked Up In Adult Prisons - Columnist Notes Crime Statistics
For Young Offenders Are Down, And Prevention - Not Prison - Gets The Credit)

Date: Fri, 27 Feb 1998 16:00:46 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: jwjohnson@netmagic.net (Joel W. Johnson)
Subject: MN: US CA: Editorial: Turning the tide on juvenile crime
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: Marcus-Mermelstein Family 
Source: San Jose Mercury News (CA)
Contact: letters@sjmercury.com
Website: http://www.sjmercury.com/
Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998
Author: Joanne Jacobs


Crime statistics for young offenders are down, and prevention -- not prison
-- gets the credit

DON'T trust anyone over 12, baby boomers say. We are afraid of our children
-- or, at least, of other people's children. We read about crazy kids
shooting their schoolmates, gang kids murdering their rivals and anyone
else who gets in the way. We know many kids are growing up in
single-parent and too-busy-to-parent families, raised by Animaniacs rather
than adults.

But something happened to those young ``super-predators'' on their way to
destroy our society. They stopped off at the after-school center to do
their homework and play afternoon basketball.

The Senate is considering a bill that would authorize trying 14-year-olds
as adults, and sending them to adult prisons. It boosts funds for
prosecution and punishment, cuts funds for prevention programs.

But juvenile crime is declining -- in part because prevention programs are

Violent crime by juveniles and by 18- to 24-year-olds rose dramatically
from 1984 to 1993. The prime suspect is the crack epidemic, which fueled
gang wars over drug turf and spread the use of guns; media violence and
absent fathers are also blamed.

As the crime wave was about to peak, the National Center for Juvenile
Justice in Pittsburgh found arrests of juveniles for violent crimes had
doubled from 1983-1992 and would double again by 2010 if the trends
continued. But they didn't.

Juvenile crime was down in 1996, the last year for which data is available.

It was down the year before. Aggravated assault, the most common violent
crime committed by juveniles, is down. Homicide, the most publicized, is
down. The most alarming category -- murders by pre-teens -- peaked at 41 in
1994, and then fell to 20 in 1996.

``It's turned around,'' says Melissa Sickmund, a senior NCJJ analyst.

Juvenile violence arrests have fallen to 1989 levels -- still high, but
headed in the right direction.

Sickmund suspects a combination of factors have helped: an expansion of
after-school programs, mentoring and other prevention strategies; community
policing; tougher sanctions; and more concern by parents about supervising

The drug market stabilized, says James Alan Fox, a Northeastern University
criminologist. And communities responded to the crime wave by creating
anti-violence curricula in schools and after-school programs to keep kids
off the streets in the high crime hours, afternoon and early evening.

Trying teenagers as adults has little effect, Fox believes. ``For the most
part, punishment does not deter kids. They live for today, die today.''

``Things have gotten better from the worst point ever,'' he stresses. And
the demographics are scary. While baby boomers have gotten too old for
violent crime -- one reason adult crime rates are falling -there's a baby
boomlet entering the high-risk adolescent years. Will they find adult
mentors to point them in the right direction? Or adult felons in the next

A bill by Republican senators Orrin Hatch of Utah and Jeff Sessions of
Alabama throws teenagers to the wolves -- or, worse, to adult convicts.

``The Violent and Repeat Juvenile Offender Act'' (S.10) would allow
14-year-olds to be tried as adults and locked up in adult prisons. In
theory, they'd be protected from ``prohibited physical contact'' or
``sustained oral communications'' with adult felons, but the Children's
Defense Fund calls it the `The Child Rape Opportunity and Criminal
Mentoring Act.''

The bill repeals the federal ban on jailing kids who've done nothing that
would be a crime for an adult: Unless state law forbids it, runaways or
kids dumped on the system as ``unmanageable'' could be held temporarily in
adult jails.

States that want a share of $1.5 billion in federal grants would have to
adopt federal rules for juvenile offenders, and spend most of the grant
money on prosecutors and prisons. Funding for programs to prevent juvenile
crime are cut -- except for Hatch's favorite, the Boys and Girls Clubs,
which would get money to expand.

The bill, which has passed the Senate Judiciary Committee and will be heard
this spring on the Senate floor, also contains a grab bag of provisions
asserting federal control over local issues. For example, it forces public
schools to expel students for bringing drugs, alcohol, weapons -- or
cigarettes -- on campus. Smoke a Camel, take a walk.

There are a few kids so vicious at 14, 15 or 16 that they can't be saved.

There are a few who earn ``career criminal'' treatment before they turn 18.

But not many.

To deal with the rare cases, get-tough laws put not-so-bad adolescents at
risk, Sickmund says. ``We've seen cases charged as aggravated assault that
came down to throwing a cup at the mother, poking someone with a straw. For
this, kids could be tried as adults.''

These are children, often struggling to become adults without much adult
guidance. They can get it from a coach, a tutor, a Big Brother -- or the
guys on the cellblock.

Joanne Jacobs is a member of the Mercury News editorial board. Her column
appears on Mondays and Thursdays. You may reach her at 750 Ridder Park Dr.,
San Jose, CA 95190, by fax at 408-271-3792, or e-mail to
JJacobs@sjmercury.com .

Concord Students Sent Home From Europe Trip Suing School
('San Francisco Chronicle' Notes Zero-Tolerance Policy At Mount Diablo
Unified School District In California Lent Opportunity For Chaperones
To Severely Punish Students Without Any Clear Evidence Of Violations)

Subj: US CA: Concord Students Sent Home From Europe Trip Suing School
From: Joel W. Johnson (jwjohnson@netmagic.net)
Date: Fri, 27 Feb 1998 17:02:31 -0800
Newshawk: Joel W. Johnson (jwjohnson@netmagic.net)
Source: San Francisco Chronicle (CA)
Contact: chronletters@sfgate.com
Website: http://www.sfgate.com/chronicle/
Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998
Author: Charlie Goodyear, Chronicle Staff Writer


Two students sent home from Europe last year after allegedly imbibing on a
band trip are suing Concord High School, the Mount Diablo Unified School
District, chaperones and other officials.

The lawsuit, filed late Tuesday on behalf of students Keke Kaste and Jordan
Stock, claims negligence, infliction of emotional distress, slander and
libel. The teenagers and their families are asking unspecified exemplary
and punitive damages.

Last March, the two teenagers, then 14 and 15, traveled with the Concord
High band on a weeklong tour of Germany and Austria. While in the medieval
town of Rothenburg, Germany, Keke, Jordan and two other students stopped at
a cafe and ordered a nonalcoholic ``Irish Cream Coffee,'' according to the

A chaperone traveling with the band observed the students drinking and
asked a waitress what she had served them. The waitress, who could not
speak English, indicated she had served the teens an alcoholic Irish

That same night, both Keke and Jordan were separately ``interrogated'' by
chaperones. School officials falsely told both teenagers that other
students had admitted drinking alcohol, court papers contend. Chaperones
told the rest of the touring musicians that Keke and Jordan had been caught

Two days later, the teens were awakened, told to pack and put on a plane
home from the Munich airport without supervision despite concerns from
airline officials and local police that the students should not fly alone,
the suit states.

Four weeks later, a ``slanderous and libelous'' article describing the
incident appeared in the school newspaper written by the son of one of the
trip chaperones, according to the lawsuit.

Parents involved in the school's band booster group have conducted ``a
campaign of character assassination'' against Keke and admitted doing so to
the girl's parents, court papers allege.

School officials, including Concord High Principal Bonnie Warner, declined
to comment yesterday, saying they had not yet seen the lawsuit.

The teens' attorney, Dan Ryan, said his clients to this day are not sure
what they drank.

``What occurred over there, it was ridiculous,'' Ryan said. ``It's
reprehensible. These kids were isolated, put into a Star Chamber type of
proceeding and then sent home alone. They're not sure to this day they ever
had alcohol. And no one will know for sure because no testing was ever

Admission Revealed In Officer's Death ('San Jose Mercury News' Article
Says Second-Degree Murder Charges Filed Against Manic-Depressive Man
Previously Busted For Marijuana Cultivation Who Ran Over And Killed
San Jose California Highway Patrol Officer After Consuming
Prescription Drugs, Two Shots Of Vodka, While Tired)

Subj: US CA: Admission Revealed In Officer's Death
From: Marcus-Mermelstein Family 
Date: Fri, 27 Feb 1998 16:49:18 -0800
Newshawk: Marcus-Mermelstein Family 
Source: San Jose Mercury News (CA)
Contact: letters@sjmercury.com
Website: http://www.sjmercury.com/
Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998
Author: Sandra Gonzales - Mercury News Staff Writer


Suspect said he should not have been driving when patrolman was killed,
investigators say

After telling authorities he had not only consumed prescription drugs and
two shots of Vodka but that he was so tired he thought he was on a
different highway, Santa Cruz motorist Peter Wieland also admitted he
should not have been driving when he killed a San Jose CHP officer with his
careening car, according to court documents.

Wieland's admission to authorities came shortly after the crash that
claimed the life of Scott Greenly, 31, the first San Jose-area California
Highway Patrol officer killed in the line of duty since 1975. On Wednesday,
Santa Clara County prosecutors charged Wieland, 45, with second-degree
murder in the death of Greenly, killed Jan. 7 on Highway 85 near Saratoga

If convicted of second-degree murder, Wieland could face a maximum penalty
of 15 years to life in prison.

Wieland is in custody at Santa Cruz County Jail for a probation violation
unrelated to Greenly's death. He is expected to be arraigned on Friday on
the new charge.

During his interview with the CHP after the fatal crash, Wieland
acknowledged that he had taken Vodka and prescription drugs and should not
have been driving.

Toxicology tests later showed that Wieland had a 0.02 percent blood alcohol
level, well below the state's 0.08 percent legal limit.

Those tests also showed that Wieland had 0.078 percent level of
methamphetamine in his blood, as well as evidence of marijuana and such
prescription drugs as lithium, authorities said.

In addition to four prior arrests and convictions for driving under the
influence, Wieland has an extensive history of substance abuse and mental
health problems, investigative reports show.

Wieland also had been arrested eight times for suspicion of public
intoxication, and in 1996 for the cultivation of marijuana and possession
of marijuana for sale, investigative reports indicate.

Over the past several years, Wieland had completed at least one program
aimed at rehabilitating drunken drivers and attended drug abuse counseling,
they show.

Attempts to reach Wieland's defense attorney Stephen La Berge on Wednesday
were unsuccessful. On Tuesday, he said that he thought the second-degree
murder charge against his client was unjustified.

In the opinion of a forensic toxicologist, Wieland's behavior at the time
of the crash was affected by his drug and alcohol use, and his driving
pattern and statements would appear to indicate that he had fallen asleep
at the wheel, those court papers show.

The CHP report also contains several statements made by relatives and
friends of Wieland, who had warned him against drinking and driving. In
fact, the report says that his sisters told police that a few days after
Christmas, Wieland's brother had called the police to report that he was
drinking and driving.

Others said that Wieland also had been warned by a psychiatrist against
drinking while taking his medication, which was prescribed for manic

Katie Shallenberg -- a registered nurse at Stanford Hospital where
Wieland's wife was hospitalized after being diagnosed with cancer
- -recounted an incident to investigators in which she said Wieland's car cut
her off on Christmas Day.

According to the investigative report, Shallenberg told Wieland she knew
things weren't going well with him, but that in his intoxicated condition
he was going to kill someone if he continued to drive. Shallenberg alleges
that Wieland told her he did not care if he killed anyone.

On the day of the fatal injury, Greenly was attending to a routine traffic
stop on Highway 85 south of the Saratoga Avenue exit when he was run over.

Wieland drove off the road and down an embankment, striking Greenly as the
officer was standing alongside a vehicle he had just pulled over.

Issa Would Support Ban On Cigarette Ads ('Sacramento Bee' Says Darrell Issa,
Conservative Republican Candidate To Represent California In US Senate,
Would Support Complete Ban On Advertising By Tobacco Companies)

Date: Thu, 26 Feb 1998 17:22:13 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: jwjohnson@netmagic.net (Joel W. Johnson)
Subject: MN: US CA: Issa Would Support Ban on Cigarette Ads
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: Joel W. Johnson (jwjohnson@netmagic.net)
Source: Sacramento Bee (CA)
Contact: opinion@sacbee.com
Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998
Author: Mary Lynne Vellinga


Darrell Issa, the car alarm magnate running for the U.S. Senate as a
conservative Republican, on Wednesday said he would support a complete ban
on advertising by cigarette companies.

In a wide-ranging breakfast interview with The Bee Capitol Bureau, Issa
also said he had once unknowingly employed an illegal immigrant at his San
Diego-area company.

Asked about abortion, Issa said he was opposed to it in most cases but that
he felt compassion for those on the other side of the issue because his
grandmother died of infection after a self-induced abortion.

Issa, 44, said he disagreed with imposing new tobacco taxes to pay for
education or health programs, because such taxes give government a
financial incentive to allow the tobacco industry to continue promoting its

"It reminds me of trying to get someone off heroin by putting them on
methadone," Issa said.

Yet at the same time, Issa said he would back a ban on cigarette advertising.

"I do support ending tobacco advertising; I think that's a fair step we can
do," Issa said. ". . . I think that's what the tobacco industry fears the
most, that they simply go out of business because there's no new audience,
but it's what we in America should want the most; that is, that we break
this (habit) generationally over time."

Such a complete ban would go beyond the restrictions proposed by federal
regulators and lawmakers, which have focused on advertising that could
reach minors, such as billboards or cigarette company sponsorships of
sporting events, said John Sims, a professor at McGeorge School of Law who
specializes in First Amendment issues.

Sims said attempts to impose a complete ban on tobacco advertising would
likely be ruled unconstitutional, though restrictions aimed at shielding
children may hold up in court.

"Normally we don't deny people information just because we think they're
going to misuse it," Sims said. " . . . Prohibiting advertising of a legal
product just seems like big government gone wild."

With regard to immigration, Issa said he favored better border controls and
a crackdown on illegal immigrants who commit crimes on the border. He said
he supports greater sanctions for companies that knowingly hire illegal
immigrants, but added that the government should develop an easier way --
such as an identity document -- for companies to tell if someone is a legal
resident of the United States.

"Those who knowingly hire illegals need to be punished in huge amounts, and
especially those who abuse illegals," Issa said.

Issa said he had once employed a worker for several years at his company,
Directed Electronics Inc., who turned out to be undocumented.

"We found out that his valid Social Security number . . . also belonged to
a man of a different name in Oregon," Issa said. "We had paid in all the
taxes, withholding, Social Security, everything for years. The government
never bothered to tell us that just maybe there was a problem."

When Issa found out about the discrepancy, he said, "we called him in and
told him about the discovery and asked him to explain it, and we never saw
him again."

Issa also was asked about his position on abortion. He said he opposes
abortion with three exceptions: rape, incest or danger to the mother's

Yet Issa recounted how his grandmother, a Lebanese immigrant, died in 1930
after a self-induced abortion.

"My grandmother had had three children about a year and a half apart; she
was 24 years old," said Issa, who was raised a Roman Catholic. "It was very
poor times; things were getting worse. The death certificate says,
self-induced abortion."

"It gives you a view of compassion of the other side," Issa said of his
family history. "You can't be so pro-life that that disaster becomes
commonplace again."

Issa, who has never held public office, is competing for the GOP Senate
nomination with state Treasurer Matt Fong and U.S. Rep. Frank Riggs, who
represents the North Coast. The winner will go on to challenge incumbent
Democrat Barbara Boxer.

Lead Us Not Into Temptation ('San Jose Mercury News' Account Of Research
To Be Published In 'Journal Of Personality And Social Psychology,'
By David Bersoff, Psychology Professor At University Of Pennsylvania,
Which Examines Workings Of Individual Temptation
Through Social Psychology Experiments)

Subj: US CA: Lead Us Not Into Temptation
From: Marcus-Mermelstein Family 
Date: Fri, 27 Feb 1998 16:42:37 -0800
Newshawk: Marcus-Mermelstein Family 
Source: San Jose Mercury News (CA)
Contact: letters@sjmercury.com
Website: http://www.sjmercury.com/
Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998
Author: Mary Otto - Mercury News Washington Bureau


Study of liars, cheats and wobbling willpower sheds light on a human dilemma

In the recesses of your brain, there is a little courtroom where the
temptation cases are argued. The judge and jury listen, weigh the evidence.

Sometimes they decide to bend the law in your favor. "Go ahead. The apple
looks tasty; besides, nobody will miss it."

That's more or less the way David Bersoff, a psychology professor at the
University of Pennsylvania, explains the workings of temptation. He studies
stealing and lying, and he's fascinated by the subtle mental adjustments
people use to preserve their self-esteem even as they reach for forbidden

New research such as his may shed light on a human dilemma dating back to
Adam and Eve. And while temptation has always commanded the attention of
the clergy, science is now busy trying to measure the way moral failings

In research to be published in the Journal of Personality and Social
Psychology, Bersoff explores the kind of rationalizations used to justify
such common trespasses as pilfering office supplies -- studies suggest one
in three employees steal at work -- or quietly pocketing a cashier's

It's with good reason people pray "lead us not into temptation," said
Bersoff. He has watched the moment of surrender closely and it's not an
enviable place to be.

In his research, he recruited university students to take part in what they
were led to believe was a product test. The participants were then overpaid
$2 for their efforts.

The first group was told a big foreign company was sponsoring the test. The
subjects were paid by an impersonal cashier. In that group, 80 percent
kept the extra money.

The next subjects were told the test was being run by a graduate student
and being paid for out of his own funds. ``Now the victim has a face. It's
harder to deny harm," said Bersoff. Half of that group accepted the
undeserved money.

In the next scenario, the cashier counted out the money on her desk then
asked: "Is that right?" The question made it necessary to tell a lie to get
the undeserved $2. Forty percent did so.

Giving the victim a face

In a final scenario, subjects were told a graduate student was paying for
the test, and the cashier asked if the payment was right. So there was a
victim to hurt and a lie required. Still, 20 percent took the extra $2.

He concluded that people are more likely to give in to temptation when they
can remain passive, and when they feel no one is being harmed. Each
complicating factor made it harder and harder to "find in your mind a way
to justify this," said Bersoff.

"I don't believe people are bad," he said. "But certain situations play on
their weakness and lead them to do bad things. I think that is the whole
nature of temptation."

Meanwhile, researchers at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland will
soon publish the results of a study using a chocolate-chip fatigue test
that they say helps prove willpower is like a muscle that gets tired under

The researchers asked subjects to skip a meal before they came in for
testing. On a table in the testing room were a plate of cookies and a plate
of radishes.

"We told them it was a test of taste impressions and memory and that your
assignment is going to be (only) radishes," said social psychologist Roy
Baumeister, who headed the research.

`"We left the person alone in the room to increase the temptation," said
Baumeister. "We observed in secret to make sure they didn't cheat."

Some people studied the cookies. Some went as far as to pick up a cookie
and smell it, said researcher Ellen Bratslavsky, who ran the test. Others
couldn't bear to even look at the cookies. They pushed the plate away. But
none of them cheated.

They ate radishes instead. Their forbearance, however, cost them. The
radish-eaters were asked to work on a confounding mental puzzle as long as
they could. They gave up on the puzzle much faster than both a group of
subjects allowed to eat the cookies and a group of subjects who were asked
to perform the puzzle without being offered any food at all.

"The point is, resisting temptation is draining. It takes something out of
you," said Baumeister.

For Baumeister, self-control is "a muscle that gets stronger with
exercise." It's also "something that gets used up. It needs time to get
replenished before you use it again."

Everyone has felt willpower tested and found its limits.

Watching alcoholics

Howard Rankin, a clinical psychologist at the University of South Carolina,
has conducted extensive studies of those limits.

He got his start years ago at the University of London, observing
alcoholics do battle with the cravings that arose when they sat next to a
bottle of booze. In the years since then, Rankin has developed a
"temptation management" regime that teaches people to imagine themselves
resisting temptation until they are actually able to do it.

"They go through a crisis and come out the other side. They feel empowered
because they've survived," he said. "The power of the temptation lies in
your approach to it rather than any intrinsic energy it has on its own. The
core principle is impulse control, learning to tolerate frustration."

Liggett Seeks Immunity ('Associated Press' Quotes Unnamed Source Who Says
Tobacco Company Is Ready To Help US Justice Department's
Three-Year-Old Criminal Investigation Of Tobacco Industry
In Exchange For Immunity)

Subj: US: Wire: Liggett Seeks Immunity
From: Marcus-Mermelstein Family 
Date: Fri, 27 Feb 1998 16:52:27 -0800
Newshawk: Marcus-Mermelstein Family 
Source: Associated Press
Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998


WASHINGTON (AP) -- Liggett Group Inc. is ready to help the Justice
Department's criminal investigation of the tobacco industry in exchange for
immunity, according to a source close to the investigation.

The source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, confirmed today that
Liggett has offered to provide the government with industry information on
nicotine's addictive qualities and efforts to hide health risks.

The company also has offered to make its scientists and other experts
available to the government in its three-year-old investigation, said the

Among the allegations the department is probing is whether industry
officials lied to Congress in 1996 when they testified to having no
knowledge of nicotine's addictive qualities or averse health affects from

Liggett, which is owned by Brooke Group Ltd. and markets L&M, Chesterfield,
Eve and Lark cigarettes in the United States, broke with bigger companies
last year in reaching an earlier settlement with 22 states that sued the
industry to recover Medicaid funds spent on treating smokers.

While declining to comment on any possible negotiations, Bennett S. LeBow,
chief executive officer of the Brooke Group, Liggett's parent company, told
the Los Angeles Times that ``we're trying to do the right thing.''

Liggett May Aid US In Tobacco Probe ('Orange County Register' Version)

Subj: US: Liggett May Aid In Tobacco Probe
From: John W.Black
Date: Fri, 27 Feb 1998 15:47:28 -0800
Newshawk: John W.Black
Source: Orange County Register (CA)
Contact: letters@link.freedom.com
Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998
Author: Barry Meier


Cooperation could make the company's scientists and other experts available
to investigators.

Representatives of Liggett Group,the maker of L&M and other brands, are
exploring an agreement with Justice Department officials under which the
cigarette producer would cooperate in the government's criminal
investigation of the tobacco industry, said people familiar with talks.

The cooperation of Liggett, which is owned by Brooke Group Ltd., could
boost the Justice Department's four-year inquiry by making company
scientists and other experts available to investigators, even though
Liggett is the smallest of the nation's major cigarette producers and
considered producers and considered to be far less technically
sophisticated than giants like Philip Morris Cos.

Last March, Liggett broke with its industry colleagues and separately
settled 22 tobacco-related lawsuits filed against it by state attorneys
general. And Brooke Group Chairman Bennett LeBow became the first tobacco
industry executive to acknowledge publicly that nicotine is addictive and
that smoking causes cancer.

Paul Caminiti, a spokesman for Liggett, which also produces Chesterfield,
Eve and Lark cigarettes, would not comment. A Justice Department spokesman
said the agency, as a matter of policy, would not confirm or deny anything
potentially related to an investigation.

But people with knowledge of the talks, who spoke on the condition of
anonymity, said representatives of Liggett, including LeBow and Stanley
Arkin, a New York criminal lawyer retained by the company, have met several
times with Justice Department officials to discuss the terms and conditions
under which Liggett might cooperate with the government's inquiry.

The Justice Department is looking into such issues as whether cigarette
producers manipulated nicotine, the addictive substance in tobacco, or
whether they defrauded the government by lying to regulators and elected
officials. All manufacturers have denied any wrongdoing.

The goal of Liggett representatives in trying to craft a deal would be to
provide the company with immunity from prosecution or to reach a plea
agreement that would minimize any criminal penalties that the company or
its officials might face.

Most of Liggett's cooperation with the government would probably have to
come in terms of participation by its scientists, executives and lawyers,
including some who participated in meetings with officials and lawyers of
other cigarette producers.

It is not clear whether the talks between the Justice Department and
Liggett will result in an agreement. But Liggett's apparent efforts to set
itself apart from other tobacco producers are in keeping with the company's
actions over the past year.

After Liggett settled the state suits last March, other producers quickly
attacked LeBow and his company, branding him a traitor who was cutting a
deal to help prevent a financially weak company from falling into

Since then, LeBow has remained a thorn in the industry's side by testifying
on behalf of plaintiffs in smoking on behalf of plaintiffs in
smoking-related lawsuits and publicly releasing information on cigarette
ingredients and additives.

The Price Of Cigarettes Depends On Who's Taxing ('San Jose Mercury News'
Columnist Asks, 'What Is Actual Cost Of Pack Of Cigarettes If You Remove
All State And Federal Taxes?' And Cites 1996 Tobacco Institute Data
For California, Some Other Locales)

Date: Fri, 27 Feb 1998 16:35:42 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: jwjohnson@netmagic.net (Joel W. Johnson)
Subject: MN: US CA: Column: The Price Of Cigarettes Depends on Who's Taxing
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: Marcus-Mermelstein Family 
Source: San Jose Mercury News (CA)
Contact: letters@sjmercury.com
Website: http://www.sjmercury.com/
Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998


Question: What is the actual cost of a pack of cigarettes if you remove
all the state and federal taxes?

Christopher Flowers, San Jose

Answer: Since prices vary among brands and merchants, the answer depends
on where you shop and what you buy. But whatever you pay for a 20-cigarette
pack in California, the price includes 61 cents in special state and
federal taxes on top of Santa Clara County's 8.25 percent sales tax. The
federal cigarette tax is 24 cents per pack, while the state tax is 37

That brings the average cost of a pack of cigarettes in California to $2,
according to the Tobacco Institute's data for 1996, the most recent year
for which the figures are available.

In California, localities do not impose any additional city or county taxes
on cigarettes sales, said the industry group. But in several other states,
they do.

New York City, for example, imposes an 8-cent tax per pack over the state's
56-cent tax. The average cost of a pack in New York state in 1996 was

For the best prices, move to Kentucky, where in 1996 a pack averaged $1.45.

Revenue from federal cigarette taxes goes into the general fund, while a
portion of California's revenue is earmarked for anti-smoking education and
research into diseases such as breast cancer. New federal and state
proposals would raise taxes up to $1.50 per pack to pay for social

Question? Call (408) 920-5003.

Suspect Shot Dead By San Francisco Cop ('San Francisco Chronicle' Account
Suggests Treatment Slot At Victory Outreach Program Opened Up A Day Too Late
For Armed Robber, Son Of One Of Founding Members Of Popular
San Francisco-Based Latin Rock Band Malo)

Date: Fri, 27 Feb 1998 17:06:23 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: jwjohnson@netmagic.net (Joel W. Johnson)
Subject: MN: US CA: Suspect Shot Dead by S.F. Cop
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: Joel W. Johnson (jwjohnson@netmagic.net)
Source: San Francisco Chronicle (CA)
Contact: chronletters@sfgate.com
Website: http://www.sfgate.com/chronicle/
Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998
Author: Jaxon Van Derbeken, Chronicle Staff Writer


Mistake made in thinking he had gun, police say

A man suspected of armed robbery was shot to death yesterday by a San
Francisco police officer who mistakenly believed the man was about to open
fire, authorities said. Arcelio Garcia Jr., 28, was shot by officer Adriano
``Andy'' Castro at 12:27 a.m. near Treat and 24th streets. Garcia was later
pronounced dead at San Francisco General Hospital. The dead man, who was
also known as Jimmy Romero, was the son of Arcelio Garcia Sr. of Daly City,
one of the founding members of the popular San Francisco-based Latin rock
band Malo.

The shooting occurred minutes after a man called 911 to report that he had
been terrorized in the area by an armed man matching the younger Garcia's

Shortly afterward, Garcia and a woman apparently robbed a man at gunpoint
of his wallet, containing $48 in cash.

Officers Castro and Mario Molina, both in plainclothes and in an unmarked
car, spotted an armed man matching the suspect's description running on
23rd and Treat streets and confronted him. The woman fled and was not

``They told him to halt and drop the weapon. They knew him by name because
of prior contacts,'' said Lieutenant David Robinson.

Garcia reportedly turned away from the officers and then began to walk away
quickly, with the officers following him in the cruiser.

``They were following him, commanding him to stop,'' Robinson said.

At 24th and Treat streets, the officers got out and once again ordered the
man to stop and put his hands up.

``He spins on them, and the officer fired,'' said Captain Kevin Dillon.
``At the moment, it appears to us, everything was appropriate.''

Police later found out that Garcia had dumped the gun he was carrying in
some bushes. A couple who saw the suspect dispose of the gun took it and
left the scene. The man who took the gun was spotted later at 21st and
Harrison streets, and the gun was recovered.

Police reports do not indicate any eyewitnesses to the shooting, although
police said they were still compiling information on the case. Dirk Ludigs,
a neighbor, said he heard one shot and then heard screaming from the man.
``We heard the guy yelling, `What's your problem?' Then we heard a second
shot. When we looked out the window, the guy was on the sidewalk, face

The dead man's sister, Yvette, said that she was trying to contact her
brother yesterday to tell him that he could enter the Victory Outreach
program just before he was killed.

Garcia had been arrested two weeks before his death on possession of crack
cocaine. He had prior convictions for strong-arm robbery, assault with a
deadly weapon and grand theft.

``He's been out of prison since December 1,'' said Garcia's sister. ``He
did 5 1/2 years, and this is the longest time he has ever stayed out.''

She said he had been working at Goodwill Industries, soliciting donations.
``He was really determined not to go back ever again,'' she said. ``He
really wanted to turn his life around, he wanted to take care of his
12-year-old daughter.''

``I was hoping to see him today, but I didn't hear from him. Today I was
going to look for him. I believe he really would have made it this time.''

Marine Exonerated In Border Killing ('San Francisco Examiner'
Says Camouflaged Marine Who Shot Teen Herding Goats On Texas Border Ranch
Expected To Be Exonerated By US Justice Department)
Link to earlier story
Date: Fri, 27 Feb 1998 21:09:09 -0800 To: mapnews@mapinc.org From: Olafur Brentmar Subject: MN: US: Marine Exonerated In Border Killing Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org Newshawk: Joel W. Johnson (jwjohnson@netmagic.net) Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998 Source: San Fransisco Examiner Contact: letters@examiner.com Website: http://www.examiner.com/ MARINE EXONERATED IN BORDER KILLING Washington A Marine who shot and killed an American teenager along the Texas-Mexico border will not face criminal civil-rights charges, a federal grand jury has decided. The U.S. Justice Department is expected to announce Friday that the civil-rights probe of the tragedy has cleared Marine Cpl. Clemente Banuelos of criminal wrongdoing. Banuelos and three other Marines were in camouflage on an anti-drug patrol near Redford, Texas, on May 20, 1997, when he shot and killed 18-year-old Esequiel Hernandez Jr., a Redford high-school sophomore who was herding goats. Banuelos has said he fired because Hernandez had fired twice at the patrol with a rifle and was preparing to shoot again. A state grand jury declined to indict Banuelos or the other Marines.

Feds Won't Press Charges In Border Shooting ('Associated Press'
Version In 'Houston Chronicle')

Date: Fri, 27 Feb 1998 17:37:46 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: jwjohnson@netmagic.net (Joel W. Johnson)
Subject: MN: US: Feds Won't Press Charges In Border Shooting
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: Art Smart 
Source: Houston Chronicle
Contact: viewpoints@chron.com
Website: http://www.chron.com/
Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998
Author: Michelle Mittelstadt, Associated Press Writer
Our Newshawk writes: The following is NOT the story which appeared in the
final (three-star) edition of the Houston Chronicle. The article which did
appear in print is headlined "Panel clears Marine in border killing" and is
by Jim O'Connell of Scripps Howard News Service. Probably the Scripps
story replaced the following after the latter was posted to the web site.
Either that, or the Chronicle's contract with Scripps prevents posting to
their web site, so the AP story was used in lieu.


WASHINGTON -- A U.S. Marine who fatally shot a West Texas teen- ager during
a drug patrol along the border won't face federal civil rights violation
charges, the Justice Department informed a Texas congressman this week.

A spokesman for Rep. Lamar Smith, R-San Antonio, said Justice officials
informed Smith that they wrapped up their civil-rights investigation
against Marine Cpl. Clemente Banuelos last month after a federal grand jury
in Pecos concluded its work in the shooting death of 18-year-old Esequiel
Hernandez Jr. of Redford.

Banuelos fired the shot last May 20 that killed Hernandez as he was tending
to his herd of goats near his home.

"The shooting death of Esequiel Hernandez remains troubling," said Smith,
who as chairman of the House immigration subcommittee has raised questions
about the Border Patrol's role in the shooting. "The public has a right to
know who is responsible for this death. But no one is being held

Lee Douglass, a spokeswoman for Justice's Office of Civil Rights, today
declined comment. Attorneys for Banuelos and the Hernandez family didn't
return calls today.

Rev. Melvin LaFollette, a priest who heads a Redford committee examining
legal action in the matter, today expressed outrage at word of the Justice
Department's decision, which hasn't been officially given the community.

"It's outrageous that they should come to that conclusion,"

LaFollette said. "We've got to seek justice and if our own `Department of
Injustice' refuses to do anything, we will have to go the civil route."

Smith said he has initiated a new inquiry into the shooting now that
Justice's investigation is completed. Last fall, at the request of Attorney
General Janet Reno, Smith agreed to postpone hearings by his panel into the
shooting pending completion of the civil-rights investigation. He has
voiced irritation at what he terms a lack of Justice Department cooperation
and was angered by the department's month-long delay in notifying him about
the end of the civil-rights investigation.

End of the civil-rights probe would mark the conclusion of a second
investigation into the death of Hernandez, who was tending his goats when
he encountered the four-man camouflaged Marine patrol watching for drug
smuggling crossing the Rio Grande.

A Presidio County grand jury also declined to indict anyone after a state
criminal investigation into the shooting.

The shooting highlighted the controversial role of using armed military
personnel in anti-trafficking efforts along the U.S.- Mexico border. In the
wake of the death, the Defense Department suspended the use of armed
military personnel for missions along the border.

Hernandez was killed after crossing paths with a four-man Marine unit
assigned to watch a suspected drug smuggling route at the request of the
Border Patrol.

Military officials said Hernandez fired twice in the direction of the
Marines, who were in camouflage, with a .22-caliber rifle and was aiming at
one of the soldiers when Banuelos, the team leader, shot the teen once with
an M-16. The Hernandez family believes the youth, who was tending his herd
of goats and often carried a gun to protect the animals , had no idea the
Marines were there.

The Hernandez family is pursuing a civil claim against the government.

No Civil-Rights Charges Likely In Border Shooting ('Orange County Register'

Date: Fri, 27 Feb 1998 15:51:23 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: jwjohnson@netmagic.net (Joel W. Johnson)
Subject: MN: US: No Civil-Rights Charges Likely In Border Shooting
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: John W.Black
Source: Orange County Register (CA)
Contact: letters@link.freedom.com
Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998
Author: Jim O'Connel-Scrips Howard News Service


A Marine on an anti-drug patrol killed an American teen who was herding
goats in Texas.

WASHINGTON-A Marine on anti-drug patrol who fatally shot an American
teen-ager along the Texas-Mexico border will not face criminal civil-rights
charges, a federal grand jury has decided.

The Justice Department is expected to announce as early as Friday that the
civil-rights probe of the tragedy has cleared Cpl. Clemente Banuelos of
criminal wrongdoing.

Banuelos and three other Marines were in camouflage on an anti-drug patrol
near Redford, Texas, on May 20, 1997, when he killed Esequiel Hernandez
Jr., 18, a high school sophomore, who was herding goats.

Rep. Lamar Smith, R-Texas, said the federal grand jury that was considering
the case-ended deliberations Jan. 8 without indicting Banuelos.

Smith, who serves on the House Judiciary Committee, said he is still
seeking more information and might hold a congressional hearing on the

"The shooting is still troubling to me," Smith said. "Not all the questions
have been answered, and no one has been held accountable."

A Marine spokesman said the service has not been formally informed of the
decision. "We understand the Department of Justice intends to close its
civil rights investigation into the shooting incident," said Lt. Col. Scott
Campbell. "If the Department of Justice does close the investigation, we
are pleased that after a thorough review it found no violation of Mr.
Hernandez's civil rights."

Bill Weinacht,who represents the teen's family, is pursuing a negligence claim.

The Defense Department temporarily ended armed military patrols along the
border after the fatal shooting. Pentagon sources have said the department
plans to announce soon that it will permanently end such patrols.

A study soon to be released on the military's role along the 2,000-mile
border will advocate that support services including road building and
intelligence gathering continue, while ground reconnaissance missions
should end, sources said.

Family Battles To Free Man Whose Lawyer Bungled Case ('Detroit News'
Recounts Case Of Innocent Man Sentenced To Life Term
Under Michigan's Mandatory Minimum Sentences For Drug Violations -
Can't Get New Trial Even Though Michigan Attorney Grievance Commission
Has Confirmed His Lawyer Limited His Defense In Order To Steal $40,000
From Him)

Date: Sun, 1 Mar 1998 01:14:23 -0800 (PST)
From: Charles Stewart (chuck@teleport.com)
To: cannabis-commonlaw-l@teleport.com
Subject: CnbsCL - crooked attorneys? (fwd)
Sender: owner-cannabis-commonlaw-l@teleport.com
-- Forwarded message --
From: "EAGLEFLIGHT" uNITED STATES Theatre Command (David E. Rydel)"
Date: Sat, 28 Feb 1998 22:46:53 -0500
From: Terry L Fesler (eslerf@net-link.net)
Subject: crooked attorneys?
Please consider posting a news article found in the Detroit News:

Thursday, February 26, 1998

Family battles to free man whose lawyer bungled case
Son of Lion great needs money stolen from him to appeal

Dale G. Young
The Detroit News

Richard Walker discusses the circumstances that
landed him in jail. With him is Patricia and Murray Walker, who raised
him. Richard, whose biological father is former Detroit Lion Dick Lane,
says his attorney stole his money.

By Fred Girard
The Detroit News

The Michigan Attorney Grievance Commission, prodded
every slow step of the way by a feisty retiree in a wheelchair,
finally confirmed what Richard Walker has said ever since his
1992 trial ended in a shocking sentence of life in prison:
His lawyer, Howard Wittenberg, stole his money, then
misdefended him at trial to conceal the theft.

Even though one commission member called Wittenberg's
actions "the worst of the worst," Walker won't be getting a new
trial soon after his conviction under the drug lifer law. The
Michigan Supreme Court has refused to grant him a hearing
because his application deadline expired nine months ago.

"I'm mad and I'm frustrated," Walker said in a prison interview.

"My trial strategy was phenomenal," an unrepentant
Wittenberg said from Bloomington, Ind., where he has gone into
the bagel business.

"I still have my faith. Richard is going to be free," said
Walker's stepmother, Patricia Walker, who battled her own
poor health and a massive bureaucracy in the fight for her
stepson's freedom.

Walker, 34, was convicted in 1992 of conspiring to possess
more than 650 grams of cocaine, which, in Michigan, carries a
mandatory sentence of life. In two raids on Walker's home,
authorities found no drugs, drug records or drug paraphernalia.

Three pushers who had been arrested previously testified against
Walker, in exchange for lighter sentences: Two got probation,
the third had a 20-year sentence reduced to nine years.

Wittenberg filed no motions; waived a preliminary examination
in which the charge could have been reduced or dismissed;
waived a jury, opting to have Walker tried by a judge alone; and
refused, despite Walker's pleas, to let Walker take the stand in
his own defense.

After an investigation and hearings stretching over more than
three years, the Grievance Commission has ruled Wittenberg
misappropriated $40,000 of Walker's money before the trial,
altered his defense of Walker to hide that fact, then lied about it
to investigators.

The money trail

Walker's path to prison began in 1990, when an arrested drug
dealer, trying to win a lighter sentence, told police his source for
cocaine was a man named Richard. Two other arrested dealers
told much the same vague story, although a wiretap on one of
their phones monitored 3,000 calls in two months without the
name Richard ever being mentioned.

Still, authorities were able to obtain a search warrant for
Walker's modest home on Piedmont in Detroit. Agents found
nothing related to drugs, but seized $120,000 in cash and five
guns, and told Walker he soon would be indicted for drug

Wittenberg, hired by Walker for a $20,000 flat fee paid in
advance, convinced authorities that Walker kept large amounts
of cash to buy and build race cars and engines. No indictment
was issued. The $120,000 was returned in a check payable to
Wittenberg, who returned only $80,000 to Walker, saying he
was keeping $40,000 for himself as a contingency fee.

Walker and his girlfriend argued bitterly that they already had
paid him all he was due, but before the matter could be resolved,
police struck with a second search warrant. Again nothing
related to drugs was found, but agents confiscated $40,000 in
cash -- part of the same money, it turned out, they had seized the
first time.

Based on the three arrested dealers' testimony, however,
Walker was arrested. Months before his trial, records show, the
government agreed Walker's $40,000 was not drug money, but
part of the same money taken earlier. They returned the money
-- but again in a check payable to Wittenberg.

Wittenberg, Grievance Commission records show, kept the
return secret from Walker. He put it in a bank account and wrote
checks to himself until the balance was down to $500, all the
while telling Walker the government still was holding the money.

All through Walker's trial, before Washtenaw Circuit Judge
Donald E. Shelton, no mention was made that the seized money
had been returned, so obviously it could not have been drug
proceeds, a strong point in Walker's favor.

Five months after he was sent to prison, Walker wrote the
prosecutor in the case asking if the money could be returned. He
promptly received back a receipt showing the money had been
paid to Wittenberg.

Wittenberg's actions "jeopardized Mr. Walker's defense on
his criminal charges," said Susan E. Gillooly, the Grievance
Commission attorney who successfully prosecuted Wittenberg.

Walker's appellate attorney, Kenneth A. Birch of Lansing,
who has worked on the case the past two years covering
expenses out of his own pocket, rushed to the Michigan
Supreme Court two weeks ago to request a hearing, based on
the Grievance Commission's findings.

He was politely told to go away.

Last April, long before the ponderous Grievance Commission
machinery had ground out its decision on Wittenberg, the
Supreme Court declined to hear Walker's appeal of his
conviction, although two justices dissented. Under an inviolable
court rule, a motion for reconsideration may be filed only within
the next 21 days.

Show up on the 22nd day, and, Clerk of the Supreme Court
Corbin R. Davis said, "You're out of luck. I've heard some pretty
compelling circumstances presented, but the court has not seen
fit to change its mind" about the 21-day rule.

"That's as far as I can go," Birch said the day after his rebuff.

The only step left is to move to the federal courts and file a
writ of habeas corpus, which would help him get before a judge
to determine whether he had been imprisoned illegally. But, Birch
said, Walker "hasn't retained me to do that. My job was to get
through the state appellate levels, and the retainer I received for
that ran out two years ago."

"You get one step closer, then you move back two," Walker
said at Cotton Correctional Center in Jackson.

Walker spends his workday as a porter in the gym, and every other
moment in the law library.

Although the library has paralegals who could help him,
Walker said, he has no hope of writing his own writ of habeas

"I wouldn't have a chance without a lawyer's help," he said.

"The courts look at inmates one way, and lawyers another way."

There is one alternative: appealing to the trial judge, Shelton,
for a hearing that could lead to a new trial. Walker said he fears
such a request would be hopeless. Wittenberg told him from the
start, Walker said, that Shelton was a political crony who would
give them a good deal.

When he learned what had happened to his $40,000, Walker
filed a grievance against Shelton, holding him partly responsible
for the information not coming out at trial. The grievance went
nowhere, but Walker fears he has burned a bridge behind him.

Shelton did not respond to a request for an interview.

Family stands united

Since the Grievance Commission ruled in his favor in
December, Walker has been on an emotional rollercoaster.

"It's been a rough ride," he said. "It's a good feeling to have so
many people believe you, but it's a bad feeling to be here for
something you never did, and now to have proof of that."

To Patricia Walker, 53, this is one more obstacle on a path
she knows will end in Richard's freedom. Her family's finances
are a disaster, she said, but she has absolute faith some resource
will turn up to allow the fight to go on.

Walker came into her stepson's life late.

Richard Walker was raised by Murray Walker, now a 60-year-old retired
Ford Motor heavy equipment operator.

After he graduated from Cooley High, Richard Walker
learned his biological father was Dick "Night Train" Lane, the
former Detroit Lion star and at that time executive director of
Detroit's Police Athletic League. Walker went and introduced
himself to his father, and the two became somewhat close. In the
late 1980s, Walker made successful drag-racing tours in a
pro-stock T-Bird named "Night Train."

Murray Walker divorced, and in 1988 married Patricia
Walker, who also had been a Ford employee until her legs and
back were severely injured in an accident on the job. Soon,
despite obvious differences -- among them that Patricia Walker
is white, Richard Walker African American -- they became close
as any natural mother and son.

When he was arrested in 1992, his first brush with the law,
Walker turned to his birth father, Lane, for advice about a
lawyer. Lane recommended a friend, Wittenberg, a well-known
lawyer who had been a campaign official for Eugene McCarthy
in 1968 and Jim Blanchard in '83, was once a candidate for U.S.
Attorney, and sat on the Berkley school board.

Private eye Walker

After Richard's trial and stunning conviction, followed by
learning that the $40,000 had been returned to Wittenberg
months before his trial, Patricia Walker turned private eye.

Using the call-waiting feature of her home telephone, she
devised a way of hooking Richard, from prison, to Wittenberg's
phone. She taped their conversations, catching Wittenberg in
damning admissions. She gathered police and court records, and
hounded friends and family members into giving formal affidavits
contesting Wittenberg's account of the $40,000.

Armed with her files, Patricia Walker tackled the Grievance
Commission, an agency that investigates complaints against
lawyers. Of 4,000 cases filed with the agency in a typical year,
fewer than 300 result in a formal complaint, followed by an
investigation and hearings.

After more than a year of hectoring commission staff
members, Patricia Walker and her evidence convinced the
commission in June 1996 to bring a three-count formal complaint
against Wittenberg.

Patricia Walker "has been the driving force," said attorney
Gillooly of the Grievance Commission.

Wittenberg defends actions

Gillooly has asked the commission to disbar Wittenberg for
three years, and pay $10,000 restitution to Walker. Wittenberg
previously had returned $30,000 to Walker's girlfriend. The
commission's written report, including any penalties, is expected

If the restitution is ordered, Wittenberg said, he won't pay --
even though Walker sorely needs the money for legal help.

"I don't owe him anything," Wittenberg said.

"If truth be known, he owes me. I gave him money back that I
shouldn't even have given back."

Wittenberg, who has the right to appeal any Grievance
Commission ruling against him, no longer practices law. He owns
Howie's Bagel Bakery on the campus of Indiana University in
Bloomington, his alma mater. "I'm doing phenomenally well, we
have four locations now," he said. "What's the old adage? The
best revenge is living well."

Wittenberg said even if Walker gets a new trial, the result
could be the same.

"If truth be known, I tried the case as well as anyone in the
world could have tried the case," he said. "The only reason that I
would love to have him have a new trial is so if he goes to trial
again and is convicted, he'll know that it isn't anything that I ever
did. I tried a phenomenal case. My trial strategy was

If he is disbarred, Wittenberg said, "It won't do anything to
me. It's unfortunate. I was going to retire from the practice of law
anyway, but I wanted to do it on my terms. It's a stigma. It
bothers me greatly, because I took the practice of law seriously."

Virtually the only piece of evidence presented by Wittenberg
at his hearings before the Grievance Commission was a letter that
Wittenberg swore under oath had been written by Dick Lane.

Written in stilted, legalistic phrases, the letter stated plainly that
Lane and Walker's family knew the $40,000 hadn't been stolen,
but was money owed to Wittenberg as a legal fee.

Dick Lane, now retired in Austin, Texas, said he authorized
Wittenberg to write a letter, but did not sign it, never saw it and
does not stand behind any of its contents.

Lane said he hopes Walker can somehow win a new trial.

"They just railroaded the kid," Lane said.

"They had no case against him, at no time. It was fixed from the
get-go -- they wanted to send him to jail."

Hemp Blended Into Auto Parts (Automotive Reporter
For 'The Windsor Star' In Canada Visits The World's Largest
Technology Trade Show, The Society Of Automotive Engineers
International Congress And Exposition, In Detroit, And Notes Kenex Ltd.,
The Industrial Hemp Company Based Locally, Is Marketing Industrial Hemp
Blended With Polyester To Make Products Like Door Panels, Headliners,
Sound And Thermal Insulators, Composite Mouldings, Fibre Composites,
Interior Panels, Matting, Floor Coverings, And Truck Liners)

Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 16:54:26 -0500
From: "R. Lake" 
Subject: MN: Canada: Hemp Blended into Auto Parts
To: DrugSense News Service 
Organization: The Media Awareness Project of DrugSense
Newshawk: Joe Hickey 
Source: The Windsor Star
Section: Business
Author: Alisa Priddle, Star Automotive Reporter
Pubdate: 26 Feb 1998
Contact: letters@win.southam.ca
Website: http://www.southam.com/windsorstar/


Detroit, Tucked away in the Canadian row of exhibitors at the world's
largest technology trade show is a company determined to get some mileage
out of acreage. Kenex Ltd. Of Pain Court, a village west of Chatham, is
about to plant its first crop of commercial hemp for industrial use. A
growers' meeting is scheduled for March 4 and president Jean Laprise is
hoping 810 hectares will be seeded in May and harvested in August.

It makes Kenex one of the more usual booths at the Society of Automotive
Engineers (SAE) International Congress and Exposition which wraps up today
at Cobo Conference Center in Detroit.

The show, with more than 2,000 exhibitors, is a tribute to the hi-tech
future. It features, among other innovation, concept cars with televisions
and video games, electric steering and the latest in airbag technology. And
it has Kenex, which has spent the last three years growing research crops
and lobbying the federal government to make industrial hemp legal so it can
be blended with polyester to make products like door panels.

Hemp, and its narcotic cousin, marijuana, were outlawed in Canada in 1938.
Sixty years later, hemp is grown in southern Ontario and Health Canada has
said it will have applications available as of March 1 for licenses to
produce and process hemp.

Only government-approved varieties from pedigree seeds can be grown. They
will be imported from Europe until Canadian pedigrees are developed.

Hemp is ecologically friendly, non-toxic, light weight for greater fuel
efficiency, and offers a high tensile strength. It is bio-degradable,
impact-resistant while meeting safety and quality standards, and is low
abrasion, making it worker and equipment friendly. Hemp is versatile:
capable of blending with other fibres, resins and plastics, it is a good
alternative material to wood, glass and synthetic fibres.

Among its potential automotive applications are: headliners, sound and
thermal insulators, composite mouldings, fibre composites, interior panels,
matting, floor coverings, and truck liners.

Kenex has been experimenting with its use in door panels and headliners.
Laprise said the company has been working with about six mouldmakers. The
resultant products are half hemp, half polyester.

There is a great demand for the product, which has been imported from
Europe, said Gay Myers, who handles Kenex's administration and marketing.
"We're going to bypass that and offer it in Canada."

Laprise hopes to have contracts signed by spring and inventory from the
experimental crops is a couple hundred tonnes, enough to run the processing
plant for a few months.

Construction of the Pain Court plant is finished and all the equipment
should be in place within three month.

Decline In Prison Drug Use Heralded - 62 Percent Plummet Tied To
Increased Testing ('Boston Globe' Says Massachusetts Department
Of Corrections Reports Positive Urine-Test Results Have Declined
From 2.3 Percent In 1995 To 0.3 Percent In 1997 Due To Massive Testing
And Punishment, An Effort The US Department Of Justice Calls The Best
In The Nation)

Date: Thu, 26 Feb 1998 15:13:24 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: Olafur Brentmar 
Subject: MN: US MA: Decline In Prison Drug Use Heralded 62% Plummet Tied To
Increased Testing
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: "Dick Evans" 
Source: Boston Globe (MA)
Page: B01
Contact: letters@globe.com
Website: http://www.boston.com/
Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998
Author: Zachary R. Dowdy, Globe Staff
Note: Elizabeth J. Grillo of the Globe library staff contributed to this


In the past three years, drug use in state prisons has declined
dramatically and while correction officials give some of the credit to
treatment programs, they say the biggest factor is fear: Massive testing of
inmates has put them at high risk of punishment if they use narcotics.

In an effort that the US Department of Justice calls the best in the
nation, the state Department of Correction reports that positive urine-test
results have declined from 2.3 percent of those tested in 1995 to 0.3
percent in 1997.

''If you test them frequently enough you will force them to break the
habit,'' said Timothy App, assistant deputy commissioner for community

He said the department tests inmates both randomly and when they are
suspected of using drugs.

Inmates who test positive are handled on a case-by-case basis, App said.
But he said sanctions may include loss of privileges, such as library
access, canteen use, or visits, or transfer to higher security and, in
extreme cases, referral for treatment and prosecution.

But prisoner advocates say the DOC puts too much emphasis on sanctions and
too little on treatment, especially since up to 80 percent of the state's
11,000 inmates are believed to abuse drugs. They say more can be done to
stop drugs at prison doors.

DOC officials, who have increased testing by nearly 200 percent - from
22,303 in 1995 to 62,417 in 1997 - say there is an inverse relationship
between testing and drug detection.

The number of people caught using drugs tends to drop as the number of
tests goes up, officials say. The DOC detected drugs in 507 inmates in
1995, 261 in 1996 and 192 in 1997. So, in a three-year period, officials
noted a 62 percent plummet.

The program has pleased US Attorney General Janet Reno's office, which
recently called the policy ''exemplary.'' Federal officials invited App to
present the DOC's policies at a conference last fall to help other states
frame their own.

Steven Amos, deputy director of the correction program office in the
Justice Department, said Massachusetts has complied with both mandatory and
recommended policies outlined in President Clinton's prison drug policy

States are required to establish policies that conform to the guidelines by
September in order to remain eligible for federal funding for capital
improvements in prisons.

The DOC received $8,693,941 in 1997, and a total of $9,942,394 since the
grant program was implemented by Congress in 1996, Amos said.

''Massachusetts is far ahead of other agencies,'' Amos said, adding that
North Carolina, New Hampshire, and Ohio prison systems were also commended.

While DOC officials tout their success on the drug front, they admit they
have more work to do to seal the facilities' perimeters, get addicts help,
and keep inmates drug-free.

And Jill Brotman, executive director of the Massachusetts Prison Society, a
prisoner advocacy group, said the DOC's preoccupation with catching drug
users may be misguided. She said placing more energy into lowering demand
for drugs would be a better policy.

''They spend too much money on testing and not enough on programs,''
Brotman said. ''Counseling, mental health, and educational programs provide
people with the wherewithal to lead drug-free lives, not drug testing and
punitive policies.''

App said that corrections officials spent $150,000 on testing last year,
and that they expect to spend $200,000 this year. And Anthony Carnevale, a
DOC spokesman, said the DOC spends just shy of $3 million annually on drug

App said that a special drug counseling program, Spectrum, which costs the
DOC $2,166,000 each year, annually treats two sets of 600 inmates in
six-month cycles in 11 facilities. Despite that, Brotman complained of a
treatment backlog, saying far too many inmates are denied help for drug

Carnevale said 346 inmates were awaiting slots in the program as of
December. Fully 20 percent of prisoners are incarcerated for drug-related
offenses, data show.

The DOC credits rigorous surveillance, including its telephone monitoring
system, with stemming the supply of drugs more effectively now than in
years past. Nonetheless, drugs still penetrate prison walls.

Last month, two prison guards, Patrick Hymel and Robert Kelly, were
indicted for allegedly bringing heroin and marijuana into prisons, where
drugs can sell for three times their street value. Both men were fired by
the DOC after the charges surfaced. Sometimes, visitors try to deliver
drugs. Last May, David Downey, 66, of Wakefield, was arrested for allegedly
trying to smuggle heroin to his son at MCI-Cedar Junction.

(c) Copyright 1998 Globe Newspaper Company.

Judgment Day For Drug Countries ('Los Angeles Times' Notes Today Is Day
Clinton Administration Makes Formal Announcements On How Many Of 30
Foreign Countries Involved In International Drug Trafficking
Will Be Certified As Partners In US Drug-War Effort)

Subj: US: Judgement Day For Drug Countries
From: Jim Rosenfield
Date: Fri, 27 Feb 1998 00:30:48 -0800
Newshawk: Jim Rosenfield
Source: Los Angeles Times (CA)
Contact: letters@latimes.com
Website: http://www.latimes.com/
Fax: 213-237-4712
Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998
Author: George Gedda, Associated Press Writer


WASHINGTON--Brazil recently approved legislation to facilitate the forcing
down of suspected drug flights. Jamaica passed a law aimed at reducing the
supply and demand for drugs and enhancing its ability to interdict drug

It may be a coincidence but U.S. officials believe these actions are at
least partly related to an annual process by which the United States grades
foreign countries on their counternarcotics performance.

And judgment day for these countries has arrived. Formal announcements on
the 30 foreign countries involved in international drug trafficking were
expected today. Most were expected to be "certified" as fully cooperating
with U.S. narcotics efforts. Those that are not could face economic

The certification process, first required by Congress in 1986, enrages many
countries, where it is seen as counterproductive. These nations say the
root cause of the drug problem is insatiable U.S. demand, not lax
enforcement by source countries.

But Clinton administration officials say the threat of public humiliation
the certification process entails has energized anti-narcotics activities
in a number of countries. They cite the actions taken in Brazil and Jamaica
as examples.

However, a Jamaican Embassy official denied any such linkage, and Brazilian
Embassy officials did not return a call seeking comment. As in previous
years, much of the attention is on Colombia, the world's leading producer
and distributor of cocaine and a major supplier of heroin and marijuana.

Two years ago, the Clinton administration "decertified" Colombia as a drug
war ally, making it ineligible for all U.S. assistance except for
humanitarian and counternarcotics aid. An administration official said
Wednesday a more lenient policy towards Colombia was expected, but he
refused to be more specific.

Colombian Ambassador Juan Carlos Esguerra said in a recent interview the
decision demonstrated a lack of recognition of Colombia's anti-narcotics

Esguerra, a former defense minister, hoped the designation would be
overturned this year, asserting that no country in history eradicated more
drug-producing crops than Colombia did in 1997. Colombian figures show
about 126,000 acres sprayed, more than 50 tons of cocaine seized and 392
drug laboratories destroyed. Esguerra described how Colombian pilots
flying planes on coca eradication missions often face automatic weapons
fire from leftist guerrillas who are aligned with drug chieftains.

The ambassador spoke while seated in his office in front of a picture of
Colombian President Ernesto Samper. Samper is a major reason the Clinton
administration has been unable to give Colombia a clean bill of health. He
is seen here as beholden to narcotraffickers based on an alleged $6
million contribution received during the 1994 presidential campaign.

U.S. officials acknowledge that Colombia's eradication campaign has been
impressive but they say increased plantings by traffickers have more than
compensated for the crops destroyed through spraying. They also describe as
a step forward the reinstatement of an extradition law by the Colombian
legislature in December.

In the debate over whether to recertify Colombia, officials said one option
was to continue decertification until Samper leaves office in August. This
would enable the administration to get off to a fresh start with his
successor -provided he gives a credible commitment beforehand to fight the
drug war with no holds barred.

Mexico has routinely been certified as fully cooperative with the United
States but some in Congress believe the designation is undeserved, citing
the continued high level of cross-border trafficking. In anticipation of
the expected recertification of Mexico, the congressional skeptics were
moving to decertify Mexico through legislation.

Colombia has been lumped together with Afghanistan, Burma, Nigeria and Iran
on the list of decertified countries ineligible for most U.S. assistance.
Three other countries -Belize and Pakistan -also have been decertified but
have been spared sanctions for national security reasons.

Other countries subject to the certification process were Aruba, the
Bahamas, Bolivia, Brazil, Cambodia, China, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador,
Guatemala, Haiti, Hong Kong, India, Jamaica, Laos, Malaysia, Panama,
Paraguay, Peru, Taiwan, Thailand, Venezuela and Vietnam.

Syria and Lebanon were decertified last year but are no longer considered
drug problem countries because of successful opium poppy eradication

Newly Available GAO Reports And Testimonies (US General Accounting Office
Publicizes URL For New 41-Page Report,
'US Counternarcotics Efforts In Colombia Face Continuing Challenges')

Date: Thu, 26 Feb 1998 08:34:08 -0500
Message-Id: (9802261334.AA05170@www.gao.gov)
From: documents@gao.gov
To: daybook@www.gao.gov
Subject: Newly Available GAO Reports and Testimonies, February 26, 1998
Sender: owner-daybook@www.gao.gov
Reply-To: documents@gao.gov

February 26, 1998

The following items were added to GAO's World Wide Web site in
Portable Document (PDF) format.

- Drug Control: U.S. Counternarcotics Efforts in Colombia Face
Continuing Challenges. NSIAD-98-60. 41 pp. plus 3 appendices (10
pp.) February 12, 1998.

These reports and testimonies will also be added to our
WAIS database in ASCII and PDF formats within the next 24 hours.

This database can be searched from the World Wide Web from the
search page at:


If you are using speech synthesizer equipment or lack World Wide
Web access you may search this database with GPO's public swais
client by telnetting to: swais.access.gpo.gov

Any individual report may be retrieved directly from that archive
in text and PDF formats with the following URL:


replacing RPTNO with the report number (e.g., GAO/OCG-98-1).

To UNSUBSCRIBE from the GAO Daybook mailing list, send an e-mail
message to: majordomo@www.gao.gov
with: unsubscribe daybook 

in the message body. Please do not reply to this message to
unsubscribe from the mailing list.

Thank you.

Prime Target - Boys - Young Males Get Far More Prescriptions
For Controversial Drug ('Vancouver Province' Makes An Issue
Of More Than 59,000 Prescriptions For Methylphenidate - Ritalin - Handed Out
Last Year To British Columbians, Including More Than 40,000 Prescriptions
For Boys Between Five And 14 - Kelowna Topped List With 347 Prescriptions
For Every 1,000 Boys Aged Five To 14)

From: creator@islandnet.com (Matt Elrod)
To: mattalk@listserv.islandnet.com
Subject: Young males get far more prescriptions for controversial drug
Date: Thu, 26 Feb 1998 13:37:20 -0800
Source: Vancouver Province
Contact: provedpg@pacpress.southam.ca

Thu 26 Feb 1998 A1 / Front

Prime target: Boys: Young males get far more prescriptions for
controversial drug

By: Ann Rees, Staff Reporter

A shocking number of young B.C. boys are being treated with a
stimulant medication for attention deficit disorders, a Province
investigation shows.

More than 59,000 prescriptions for methylphenidate were handed out
between Feb. 15, 1997, and the same date this year, according to
figures obtained under the Freedom of Information Act.

Over 40,000 prescriptions were for boys between five and 14.

The survey, the first of its kind in B.C., showed a wide variation
between communities and a disturbing number of prescriptions.

Kelowna topped the list with 347 prescriptions for every 1,000 boys
aged five to 14.

Provincial health officer Dr. John Millar said the variations were a
concern to him and he vowed he'd look into the issue.

``I think you will find that your drawing attention to this means it
will get a higher priority.''

Marijuana Role Nets Prison Term ('Calgary Herald'
Says 49-Year-Old Alberta Woman Gets Two And A Half Years In Federal Prison,
Forfeits $30,000 For First Offense In 'Mammoth' Cultivation Case)

Date: Thu, 26 Feb 1998 23:36:05 -0700
Subject: Alberta Sentencing
From: "Debbie Harper3" (cozmi@shaw.wave.ca)
To: mattalk (mattalk@listserv.islandnet.com)


In Klein country (Alberta) where there is a private liquor store and bar
with VLTıs on almost every corner; God forbid if you prefer cannabis.
This is a typical sentence handed out to "serious" growers.

Deb Harper


Calgary Herald
Feb. 26,1998 pg.B4

The Courts
Marijuana role nets prison term
Daryl Slade

A 49-year-old woman alleged to be a key figure in a mammoth marijuana
growing operation in the city will go to a federal prison for 2 1/2 years.

Provincial court judge Douglas McDonald also ordered Linda Rae Larson to
forfeit $30,000 cash as part of an agreement he accepted in joint submission
by Federal Crown prosecutor Stephanie Torske and defence lawyer Balfour Der.

Larson had the cash in her possession when she was arrested by city police
on June 19, 1995,during a raid dubbed Operation Weed Eater


The major consideration in sentencing for a cultivation operation is general
deterrents," Said Torske.


The lawyer noted the fact Larson has no prior criminal record was also a key
factor in determining a fit sentence.

"For 49 years of her life she has had no trouble with the law," said Der.
"Going to jail at her age is not an insignificant matter."

Community Comment - Marijuana - Keep It Illegal (Tom Yeoman,
A Prohibitionist Columnist For 'Lethbridge Herald' In Alberta,
Writes An Ignorant Piece Of Nonsense That Will Prompt A Blizzard
Of E-Mail Rebuttals)

Date: Thu, 26 Feb 1998 10:36:46
To: Mattalk@islandnet.com
From: Kathy galbraith 
Subject: Leth Herald:Mj,keep it illegal...
The Lethbridge Herald
Contact: lherald@lis.ab.ca

By Tom Yeoman, Community Comment writer..

Is marijuana use less harmful than alcohol or tobacco
consumption? Such arguments throw back to the 1960s, when
its long-term effects were unknown. Why is a belief, outdated
for almost 30 years, now being assumed current and factual?

We know - we know- that tetrahydrocannabinol, marijuana's
psychoactive property, impairs brain functions. Loss of memory,
loss of motivation and ambition, loss of present and future
best efforts. And look what it does to critical thinking!
The immediacy of an idea- "Let's get it legalized!" - translates
into demands that are not being thought through, just buoyed on an
emotive rush. Where is the second thought, the harder look?

Some glaucoma patients smoke marijuana because they say it
can reduce pressure in the eyes. For this effect to be consistent,
they must be constantly smoking. But smoking up also constricts
the blood supply to the optic nerve and reduces the blood's oxygen
content, two of the last things a glaucoma patient needs. A once-
a-day eyedrop called Xalatan produces relief without such complications.

Then there's the case of Terry Parker, epilepsy sufferer.
His claims drew the immediate scorn of both a Calgary specialist
and her Lethbridge-area patient. It was explained to me that epilepsy
is caused by chemical imbalances in the brain. The patient has no
memory of having had a seizure, and can best reconstruct it by
deducing how much time appears to be missing. Marijuana, with its
distortion of time perception and attention span, interferes. A
person under its influence may have a seizure and not be aware of it
at all. Neither accept Parker's medical claims. Forget not: he is
a trafficker.

So why does the misguided crusader come out in pro-legalization
advocates? Ignorance or mendacity. Or the megalomanic mindstate
the drug induces. The spiritual vacuum, temporarily masked with
a giggler's euphoria.

Established findings about the long-term harm of cannabis
consumption are not being refuted. They're being ignored. Not one
word about carcinogen intake or free-radical release throughout
the body. No acknowledgment of cardiovascular erosion. Advocating
narcotic use as health enhancement is exactly the sort of decay in
meaning that George Orwell wrote so profusely against.

By the way, there is a tax on marijuana: $150. for your
possession of it.

Why keep it illegal? Because everyone trying to kick the
stuff needs help, which often comes in the transient nature of
narcotic supply lines. Given time, drug connections dry up and
blow away.

The legalization movement has only a psycho-spiritual and
intellectual desert that it calls peace. Its strength is emphatically
not forensic.

by Tom Yeoman
Community Comment

Canadian Medical Marijuana Challenge Begins Soon! (Lynn Harichy,
37-Year-Old Multiple Sclerosis Patient In London, Ontario, Seeks Donations
To Fund Her Constitutional Challenge To Canada's Cannabis Laws In April)

Date: Thu, 26 Feb 1998 14:56:39 -0800
To: mattalk@listserv.islandnet.com
From: Chris Clay 
Subject: Canadian medical marijuana challenge begins soon!


Donations Urgently Required for Expert Witnesses

LONDON, Ontario - Lynn Harichy, a 37-year old victim of
multiple sclerosis, begins her constitutional challenge to Canada's
marijuana laws in April. She is being represented by Toronto
law professor Alan Young, who will argue that the current laws
violate Harichy's rights guaranteed by the Charter of Rights and

A similar challenge by epileptic Terry Parker last fall brought a
historic court ruling; Judge Patrick Sheppard ruled that the law
is unconstitutional and Parker is now free to use marijuana
as a medicine. Since it was a lower court ruling it isn't binding
on other courts, but another similar decision would be a
significant victory and would place added pressure on Canada's
Parliament to act; indeed, the Ministers of Health and Justice
have recently called for a national debate on the issue.

Parker and Harichy's cases (and perhaps some others)
will move through the appeals process until one reaches the
Supreme Court of Canada, and the decision will be
binding on all courts in the country. It is important that such
cases receive public support, and that they are properly
funded. Unfortunately no new evidence can be admitted
during the appeals process; lawyers must rely on the facts
and testimony submitted during the original trial.

Although about $5000 has been donated to Harichy's case
so far, lawyer Alan Young estimates another $5000 is
required to do a proper job. Young is donating his time;
the money is being used to bring expert witnesses to
testify. It's important that the rest is raised very soon, since
the evidentiary record created during Harichy's trial will
become the foundation for an appeal to the Supreme Court.

Please consider making a donation, no matter how small. Time
is running short, and this is an opportunity that must not be

For full details on Harichy's challenge and information on
how you can help, please see:


UN Health Agency Fails To Suppress Pot Report - Weed Healthier Than Booze
And Tobacco, Scientists Find (Canada's 'NOW' Magazine Recounts How
A Leaked World Health Organization Report Revealing That Pot Is Less Harmful
Than Alcohol Or Cigarettes Has Left Officials In Geneva Scrambling To Downplay
Its Significance)

Date: Fri, 27 Feb 1998 12:40:39 -0500
From: Carey Ker 
Subject: Canada: UN health agency fails to suppress pot report
To: mattalk@islandnet.com
Priority: Normal
Delivery-Receipt-To: Carey Ker 
Newshawk: carey.ker@utoronto.ca
Source: NOW, February 26, 1998, Page 30
Contact: letters@now.com
Website: http://www.now.com/

Weed healthier than booze and tobacco, scientists find

By Meg Murphy

A leaked World Health Organization report revealing that pot
is healthier than booze and cigarettes has left officials in
Geneva scrambling to downplay its significance.

After suppressing the politically loaded findings, the WHO
was thrown into a tizzy when the London-based magazine New
Scientist published the report last week.

Officials in Geneva immediately went into damage-control
mode, vehemently insisting that the scientific research
compiled from 16 individual studies was inconclusive, and
denying that the report was locked away for political

"It was pure speculation. There was no science in it,"
claims Tokuo Yoshida, head of narcotic drugs at the WHO, in
an interview with NOW. He warns that the public should not
see the unofficial findings as a licence to start smoking up

Free Use

"If people start using cannabis as freely as alcohol of
tobacco, there would be harmful effects," he warns, although
he admits the study did find the effects of the legalized
substances to be more severe.

But with more widespread use, the risks associated with
cannabis may become comparable, claims Yoshida. "Instead of
smoking cannabis at home, people may start using it during
tea time or coffee breaks and take time out at work to use
it," he predicts, envisioning secondhand problems and a
greater number of daily accidents caused by impaired

Alleged unsound findings aside, Yoshida explains that
releasing the report was not in the public interest because
people would simply begin using cannabis rather than giving
up other drugs, creating more of a health problem.

Robin Room, chief scientist at he Addiction Research
Foundation, which submitted one of the reports in the
compilation, admits they found cannabis less risky but does
not deliver the news enthusiastically.

"We said it would be difficult to say cannabis could be more
harmful than alcohol or tobacco, but fundamentally we don't
know," he stresses, pointing out that a larger cannabis user
pool might have altered the findings.

No Overdoses

"It is essentially impossible to die from an overdose of
marijuana, but you can die from an overdose of alcohol. But
then, alcohol does not irritate the lungs as marijuana smoke
does, and tobacco, for that matter."

But Room does believe that the WHO should have released the
findings and allowed the public to weigh the comparative
risks, likening the process to consumers comparing
prescription drugs. "I would have made a different choice,
but it is a matter of opinion," he said.

However, David Concar, the New Scientist journalist who
broke the story, says in an interview that the report's
suppression was more a matter of cold feet than scientific
caution. He says sources close to the WHO say the report was
delayed for two years because of intense conflict over
whether the conclusion should be included.

Author's views

He also points out that the censored report that was
released states on its cover that it expresses the views of
its authors alone and is not an official WHO report. "It's
almost like the WHO has a problem with this report and
wanted to distance itself from it but couldn't figure out
the proper way to do it."

Even the WHO's formal statement issued after Concar's
article hit the stands does not deny that the organization
was under heat to cover up its findings. It just claims that
their decision had nothing to do with that pressure. Concar
says it's difficult for the WHO wield a free hand since it
is a UN organization.

"Of course, they are going to deny bowing to political
pressure. They always deny bowing to political pressure," he
says. "But they have never said it was not applied, just
that they don't bow to it. They are backing away from the
analysis even though it was done by reputable scientists."

People In The News - British Press Has No Sympathy For Meg
('San Jose Mercury News' Says Stroke Victim Princess Margaret
Got Little Sympathy Wednesday From British Tabloids,
Which Blamed Her Illness On A Lifetime Of Heavy Smoking And Drinking)

Date: Fri, 27 Feb 1998 01:57:23 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: Olafur Brentmar 
Subject: MN: UK: People In The News: British Press Has No Sympathy For Meg
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: Marcus-Mermelstein Family 
Source: San Jose Mercury New (CA)
Contact: letters@sjmercury.com
Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998


British Press Has No Sympathy For Meg

Stroke victim Princess Margaret got little sympathy Wednesday from Brit
tabs, which blamed her illness on a lifetime of heavy smoking and drinking.

``The Fags (cigarettes) Catch Up With Mags,'' headlined the Star.

``We Told Her to Give Up,'' screamed the Daily Mirror, adding that
``Princess Margaret is paying for decades of wild living'' and noting for
good measure that she ``swears like a trooper.''

It quoted her saying once: ``My vices are cigarettes and drink. I don't see
myself giving these up.''

But it noted: ``She has tried to make a few small concessions, though --
trying to stop drinking at lunchtime.''

High Tea, Scones And Morphine ('Irish Times' Interviews Richard Rudgely,
An English Academic Whose Book, 'The Encyclopaedia
Of Psychoactive Substances,' Will Be Published Next Month By LittleBrown -
He Says, 'The Zealots Who Talk Of Drugs Being A Danger
To The Very Fabric Of Society Are Wasting Their Breaths,'
Since Drugs Have Always Been With Us)

Date: Thu, 26 Feb 1998 19:26:29 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: Olafur Brentmar 
Subject: MN: Ireland: High Tea, Scones And Morphine
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: Zosimos 
Source: Irish Times (Ireland)
Contact: lettersed@irish-times.ie
Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998
Contact: lettersed@irish-times.ie (backlog)
Mail: 11-15 D'Olier St, Dublin 2, Ireland
Fax: ++ 353 1 671 9407


>From opium-smoking in ancient Egypt to the taking of morphine and tea at
18thcentury Paris parties, mood -enhancing drugs have always been a fact of
life. The author of new research talks to Patricia Danaher

The idea that recreational drug-taking is a 20th-century problem among
society's misfits is a fallacy which will be highlighted when the research
of a British academic is published next month.

It is utterly meaningless to talk about a "war on drugs", according to
Richard Rudgely. Criminal sanctions will not stop the consumption of
mood-enhancing drugs and it makes even less sense, he says, to marginalise
those who do take them.

"Quite simply, man has always sought to reach an altered state of
consciousness. It is something purely instinctive," he comments, tracing
humankind's use of drugs for ritual or relaxation back to Stone Age man.

Rudgely's The Encyclopaedia Of Psychoactive Substances is an astonishing
A-Z (from Adam to Zombie) of the different kinds of drugs which have been
consumed since man first stood up straight. Stone Age man, it seems,
enjoyed being stoned; the ancient Egyptians used opium to unwind and to do
business; smoking tobacco was compulsory among Etonian schoolboys in the
17th century and Hitler and JFK were both speed freaks. During the Suez
Crisis, the British Prime Minister Anthony Eden took to the Benzedrine
(Brendan Behan was also said to boast of taking the amphetamine). These are
just some of the anecdotes which the author includes to illustrate the
ubiquitous nature of drugs as well as the long history of consumption.

In 18th-century Paris, bourgeois ladies' afternoon tea parties had morphine
on the menu alongside the orange pekoe. "The fashion consists of the
formation of what may be termed a morphine club. A number of ladies meet
about four o'clock every afternoon, tea is served, servants are sent out,
the guests bare their arms and the hostess produces a small hypodermic
syringe with which she administers an injection to each person in turn."
Cocaine has had a long history among royalty and clergy. Appearing in a
number of diverse concoctions, the most famous was vin mariani, a wine
laced with both coca and cocaine. This wine was enthusiastically quaffed by
the likes of Queen Victoria and the Shah of Persia. Pope Pius X was a big
fan of this vintage as was Pope Leo XII who gave a gold medal to its
inventor in thanks. Even Freud was known to be fond of cocaine and denied
it was addictive.

And it's not just humans who are partial to suspending their reality
through drug use. There are many cases of cows, deer and sheep seeking out
fields containing magic mushrooms or berries and happily munching on these
as a break from the cud.

Not only do they consume psychoactive substances, animals are also a source
of many, including toads, scorpions, newts, salamander and beetles (for
making Spanish fly), which perhaps explains witches brew. Dreaming during
sleep - without the help of drugs - is an example of altered states of
consciousness par excellence, says Rudgley. "Dreaming itself is usually
such a pleasant condition, that it's hardly surprising that people try to
replicate it during their waking hours." Prayer and fasting are also routes
to these altered states, which have frequently been taken in Islam and
Christianity, but they can take considerably longer. "The ecstatic route
is generally considered to be a pagan one."

Some of the more unlikely seeming stories included in the encyclopaedia
feature the likes of the Etonian schoolboys in the 17th century who were
flogged if they didn't bring their pipes to class. "Tobacco was thought to
have great curative powers at various early stages of its introduction to
Europe. It was thought during these boys' time that tobacco helped ward off
the plague."

Opium use goes right back to Neolithic man and has not only inspired cave
paintings, but was widely used in trade in Asia and the Middle East in
particular. Morphine was often buried among the effects of a dying person,
perhaps partly to alleviate pain, but also as an offering in the next world.

Instead of fighting this phoney "war" on drugs, the consumption of which is
as old as humanity, Rudgely feels we should be trying to learn more about
what is there already. "The zealots who talk of drugs being a danger to the
very fabric of society are wasting their breaths. They should consider
instead the antiquity of man's relationship with these substances. This way
we can hope to learn something about the undoubtedly more potent drugs
which our descendants will be taking in the future."

Richard Rudgely is no Aldous Huxley and despite having written two books on
man's relationship with assorted chemical substances, he says his interest
in the subject is in trying to unravel the distorted understanding of the
subject which people have today. He says he also wants to correct the idea
that people consumed alcohol long before cannabis and opium arrived from
the east during the 18th and 19th centuries.

Before coming to power last year, Labour in Britain had pledged to look at
the legalisation of cannabis. But there has been no sign of it on the
government's agenda since, although the In- dependent On Sunday newspaper
has been campaigning to have the ban lifted. "The blanket ban on cannabis
is plainly ridiculous," comments Rudgely. "It has many medical advantages
which many sober people can vouch for and yet it is lumped in with all
other drugs. While this remains the case, it isn't even possible to do
research on it. I mean, despite the medical benefits, there is evidence
that it may be carcinogenic, but this can't even be investigated."


The Encyclopaedia Of Psychoactive Substances is published on March 5th 1998
by LittleBrown (£18.99 in UK).

Priest's Appeal To Decriminalise Heroin Likely To Fall On Deaf Ears
('The Examiner' In Ireland Says Gerry Raftery, A Franciscan Priest
Who Works With Drug Users And Destitute People,
Will Seek The Decriminalisation Of Heroin And Other Drugs
And The Establishment Of Drug Distribution Centres For Addicts
In A Submission To The National Crime Forum In Dublin Today)

Date: Thu, 26 Feb 1998 19:26:29 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: Olafur Brentmar 
Subject: MN: Ireland: Priest's Appeal To Decriminalise Heroin Likely To Fall
On Deaf Ears
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: Zosimos 
Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998
Source: Examiner, The (Ireland)
Authour: Brian Carroll Security Correspondent
Contact: exam_letters@examiner.ie


A FRANCISCAN priest wants drugs, including heroin, decriminalised and drug
distribution centres for addicts established.

Fr Gerry Raftery, who works with drug users and destitute people, will seek
the decriminalisation of heroin in a submission to the National Crime
Forum, in Dublin, today.

"It is time to consider decriminalisation and limited legalisation of drug
use in order to take the supply of drugs out of the hands of criminals and
to minimalise harm associated with drug use," Fr Raftery said.

"Our main concern is with heroin. It should be decriminalised to take
control out of the hands of drug dealers, reduce petty crime, and cut
health risks," he said.

He said the legalisation of heroin would make it easier to control a
problem which successive governments have failed to resolve.

"If it was available it would make it easier for drug addicts to stabilise
their lifestyles. It would also cut down on drug users because addicts have
to go out and find new customers to fund their own habits."

"The whole thing could be more controlled and stabilised if it was
decriminalised because like it or not drugs ... will remain a part of
society," the Galway-born priest said.

"Criminalising drugs just drives the whole thing underground and leads to
more crime and more health dangers," Fr Raftery, who works with the
Franciscan Justice Office said.

The Francisan Justice Office will present its proposals to the National
Crime Forum this morning. However, their radical approach is likely to fall
on deaf ears within the Department of Justice. A spokesman said he would
not comment on Fr Raftery's proposals until after they had been put to the
National Crime Forum. However, he stressed that the Government was already
taking strong measures to tackle heroin dealers through legislation.

Measures providing for ten-year sentences for dealers found with more than
£10,000 worth of drugs are before the D·il," the spokesman said.

The Franciscan Justice Office said it was up to the Government to address
the root cause of drug addiction instead of criminalising it.

"Poverty has been shown again and again to be related to crime.

Poverty itself can be seen as crime. If poverty is a crime then perhaps it
is Government, the social and economic policy makers who should be called
criminals," Fr Raftery said.

As Dangerous As LSD - But Legal (Translation Of Article
From Sweden's 'Expressen' Notes A Swedish Circuit Court Has Ruled
Mushroom Collector's Psilocybin Isn't Illegal, Since He Wasn't Selling Any)

Date: Sun, 1 Mar 1998 00:54:15 -0800
To: mapnews@mapinc.org
From: Olafur Brentmar 
Subject: MN: Sweden: As Dangerous As LSD - But Legal
Sender: owner-mapnews@mapinc.org
Newshawk: Olafur Brentmar
Pubdate: Thu, 26 Feb 1998
Source: Expressen
Translator: Olafur Brentmar
Website: http://www.expressen.se
Contact: chefred@expressen.se
Mail: AB Kvallstidningen Expressen, Gjorwellsgatan 30, 105 16 Stockholm, Sweden
Fax: 08-619 04 50


Svea hovratt (Swedish circuit court) is giving green light for dried
cubensis, a mushroom that compares with LSD, in a ruling. Overdose may
cause life-threatening conditions. The mushroom contains narcotics. Even so
the law allows for use and sales.

Kevin, 27, mushroom user escapes indictment for narcotics crimes. He was
apprehended during a police raid in December last year for narcotics
violation. He had 15 bags of dried cubensis mushrooms, 162 pamphlets with
directions and price list together with 850 Skr. ($100).

Everything was confiscated by police. Stockholm tingsratt (district court)
authorized the seizure. "Swedish law gives people the right to decide for
them self about their life". Kevin thinks that is good.

Sweden and most western countries classifies the properties contained in
these mushrooms as narcotics. The substances are called psilocybin and
psilocin and has a hallucinogenic effects like LSD and mescaline, which are
prohibited substances in Sweden. The ruling by Svea hovratt exposes a
loophole in the law. Mushrooms that contains narcotics are not prohibited
in Sweden. Except for one, toppslatskivlingen*. Legislators decreed a
prohibition for that species during last years mushroom season.

In the drug liberal Netherland, dried cubensis is prohibited, The drug is
considered dangerous.

Were you going to sell the bags with mushrooms that you had when you were

"No, I was going to keep them for my self", says Kevin.

Svea hovratt is following the same line. The court is convinced that Kevin
has an unusually extensive interest in mushrooms. "The mushrooms can not be
suspected of leading to criminal activity", the circuit court writes in its

"It is grotesque that the law allows mushroom-drugs that is as dangerous as
LSD. If you possess two LSD doses you will go to jail. But cubensis
mushrooms that gives you the same effect as LSD can be sold freely", said a
drug task force police officer to Expressen.


Translator's Note:

* Toppslatskivling is a swedish common name for, Psilocybe semilanceata, a
fairly common mushroom in rich soil birch meadows throughout Sweden.

Antiprohibitionist Action Report, Year 4, Number 4
(Monthly Summary For Activists Of International Drug Policy Reform News,
From CORA In Italy)

Date: Thu, 05 Mar 1998 22:21:46 +0100
To: press@drugtext.nl
From: mario lap mario@lap.nl


Antiprohibitionist action report

February 26, 1998 - (Year 4) #4



Radical | Association federated with
Antiprohibitionist | the Transnational
Coordination | Radical Party


OLD - Observatory of laws on drugs


European campaign for the revision
of international conventions


Via di Torre Argentina 76
00186 ROME
E-mail: cora.italia@agora.stm.it


Rue Belliard 97
c/o European Parliament
Rem 5.08
Tel:+32-2-230.41.21 - 646.26.31
E-mail: cora.belgique@agora.stm.it


*CORAnet http://www.agora.stm.it/coranet (in Italian)


Director: Vincenzo Donvito
All rights reserved



The victory of Ross Rebagliati cannot be the consequence of the use of
marihuana. Scientists say that cannabis effects cannot be ralted to a
sportive performance, therefore, talking about doping in this case
seems to be hazardous. The story becomes even more grotesque if we
consider many other ambiguous cases of doping dealt with in different
ways in the past. The sportive tribunal has finally forgiven the
Canadian snowboarder. Only hypocrisy can allow the withdrawal of a
medal from an athlete who smoked marijuana. It is a sign of an
environment that tolerates every sort of compromise, but that
officially must perpetuate the myth of prohibition.

INTERROGATION Senator Pietro Milio of the Pannella's List has
presented a parliamentary interrogation on the lack of implementation
of parts of the law on drugs, namely the paragraphs on the Public
Services for Drug Addiction (SERT). Mr. Milio asks the government if
SERTs respond to the requisites of the law, if the Minister for Health
intervened with the Local Sanitary Units (ASL) and the Regions in
outlawed situations, and if measures will be undertaken for those
cases in which the constitutional right to health has been violated
CORA ON THE MATTER. The initiative will continue until all major
Italian cities will be covered. Letters on the issue have also been
sent to Premier, Romano Prodi and the Minister of Health, Rosy Bindi.

Feb. 25 - A preliminary hearing for the responsible of the civil
disobedience staged last Oct. 12 in Piazza Navona, during which many
doses of hashish were delivered to passersby will be held today. The
judge will decide if prosecuting Marco Pannella, Rita Bernardini,
Alessandro Caforio, Piergiuseppe Camici, Cristina Pugliese and Mauro
Zanella indicted of having distributed hashish for free and having
incited its use (Art. 73 and 8 of the law on drugs).

TALIBANS OF ANTI-DRUGS. In its 1997 report, the International Narcotic
Control Bureau (INCB) warns governments to end their proposals of
legalization and contrasts the governmental tolerant and permissive
attitude towards the use of drugs. INCB is preoccupied by the "offense
of legalizers that are influencing legislators, as well as by the
proliferation of experiments of controlled distribution of heroin".
According to INCB "[...] efforts will be less effective if demand
reduction programmes will have to face the increasing request of
legalization". Evidently, the UN Antidrug Talibans, inspired by their
ayatollah UNDCP chief Arlacchi, recently folgored on his way to Kabul,
are using all means in order to hinder any possible alternatives to
the war on drugs to be discussed at the UN General Assembly Special
Session on Narcotic Drugs. INCB report, as well as UNDCP World Drug
Report, cannot deny the fact that there has been an increase in the
production, trafficking, use and abuse of illicit substances, with the
inevitable environment of criminality, corruption, social problems,
diseases and deaths. Against all these facts, UN officials are only
capable of presenting their old obtuse approach.



By the end of February, President Clinton will certify - or not - all
those countries that are good allies in the war on drugs. Peru,
Bolivia, Colombia, Mexico and other Caribbean islands are at risk.
There should be a better way to fight drugs, starting from the
"Certification" policy that should be handled by the Organization of
American States, and not by the U.S., as many Latin American countries
are asking. (THE ECONOMIST 21/2)


According to the British "New Scientist", the World Health
Organization (WHO) censored a scientific report that confirmed how
marihuana is less harming than alcohol and tobacco. The study was
abandoned at the last minute because it could have been used as an
argument in favor of the legalization. (EL PAIS, LIBERATION 19/2)


In order to regulate the buying of marihuana in coffee-shops without
any medical control, the Minister of Health has decided, starting from
March, to commercialize a new medicine with the active principle of
marijuana. "Marinol" will be sold to people with AIDS, multiple
sclerosis, and cancers only with medical prescription. (CORSERA, EL
PAIS 19/2)


The French Observatory on Drugs and Addiction has published two
researches on ecstasy consumers. In recent months, there has been an
increase in the use of this drug no longer related to the disco
environment. MDMA Consumers are healthy and socially well assimilated
subjects, but they often take ecstasy with other substances
encountering sanitary, physical and psychological problems. Pills
rarely contains pure MDMA. (LE FIGARO 16/2, LE MONDE, LIBERATION 17/2)


Mexico, the principal drug route to the U.S., is at risk for its
'certification'. According to DEA, Mexican cartels have established a
'narcofederation' operating in the U.S. handling the trafficking and
the political corruption. A former director of the Mexican anti-drug
agency is said to have created his own cartel in the States. (EL PAIS


Before the end of 1998, experiments of the vaccine against cocaine on
humans will start. The medicine will nullify the effects of the drug.
According to tests carried on guinea pigs, after a three-month
immunization period, cocaine does not penetrate the brain and is
destroyed without provoking damages. It will take years for the Food
and Drug Administration to approve the vaccine, while doubts on the
possibility of its legal use are arising. (CORSERA, IL GIORNALE, LA


The Supreme Court of Appeal has recently ruled that being unemployed
can lead authorities to reduce charges to drug dealers; also selling
small amounts of heroin does not hinder possible mitigations of the
case. The decision has open a debate. (CORSERA, IL GIORNALE, IL


According to 'The Observer' the British American Tobacco (BAT) has
decided to make cigarettes with tobacco and marijuana. The project
took into account the numerous positions in favor of legalization -
among politicians as well as physicians. Premier Blair firmly opposes
this option and has blocked BAT's project. (LA REPUBBLICA,


Bern - The Canton will explore new strategies to prevent the
consumption of ecstasy. A mobile device, capable of analyzing the
quality of the pills, will be put in front of discos. Those who will
agree to such procedure should agree to meet with some social
assistants. (NEUE ZUERCHER ZEITUNG 11/2)


Turingia - In 1997, criminal activities were down 7.1%; those for
drugs were 1729 - 492 more than the previous year - a relatively low
figure if compared to the overall population of 2.5 million people.
The police read these data as the proof of the taking root of drugs in


North Korea, always in need of money, is more and more involved in
international drug trafficking. Thai officials have recently
confiscated 2.5 tons of ephedrine directed to that country. Contrarily
to what affirmed by the Korean Government the substance would have
been used to prepare amphetamines rather than medicines. In the
meantime, Russian intelligence agents have intercepted many times
North Korean immigrates trying to smuggle opium and heroin to Europe
via Siberia. (DER SPIEGEL 16/2)


Rhine-Palitinat - According to the Minister of Internal Affairs, the
inhabitants of the region, 4 million people, live in one of the safest
areas of Germany. Nevertheless, in 1997, there has been a general
increase of 2.9%; drug-related offenses are up 9%. (FRANKFURTER


Some 200 heroin addicts should wait another month or two, before they
can be enrolled in programs of controlled distribution of heroin. The
'Ethical Committee', which opinion was due on Feb. 19, will render
public its decision only in a couple of months. The delay is due to
the importance of the enlargement of the project. (NEUE ZUERCHER


The Federal Council has submitted to the Parliament an urgent
resolution to improve the juridical basis of the heroin distribution
project. This transitory norm should cease in 2004, when the new law
on narcotics - if adopted by the legislative - will allow the medical
prescription of heroin as a common praxis. (NEUE ZUERCHER ZEITUNG


Kerman - According to what the newspaper "kahyban" has recently
published, some police officers recently killed some 35 presumed drug
dealers. Iran is a very important crossroad for drug traffickers
coming from Afghanistan and Pakistan. (NEUE ZUERCHER ZEITUNG 20/2)


President Samper is very happy: the incarceration of Jose Nelson
Urrego is a lethal coup against the Cali cartel and a guarantee that
the U.S. will certify Colombia. The U.S. police do not question the
efficiency of their Colombian counterpart, the problem remains the
President himself. Mr. Samper has not been able to discredit voices
about the alleged illicit funding of his electoral campaign.


Green MP, Gila Altmann, has invited the members of the Transportation
Committee of the Bundestag to experiment on themselves the effects of
hashish and marihuana. The provocation served to highlight how in
Germany the abuse of alcohol is underestimated while there is a holy
war against soft drugs. In 1997, alcohol-related car accidents were
4,000, against only 16 caused by soft drugs abuse. (SUDDEUTSCHE


According to the International Narcotic Control Bureau (INCB), Rock
singers, models, as well as ad people, newspapers and the
International Olympic Committee do not have any problem with the use
of drugs, moreover, they also consider it fashionable. INCB President,
Iranian Hamid Ghodse, says that too may songs incite the use of
joints, and that the legalization, advocated by some Governments,
follows the wrong path. (LE FIGARO, LIBERATION 24/2, FINANCIAL TIMES,


In a preliminary report, the Accounts Court, denounces the bad
administration of funds against drug addiction. There is no structure
for the control and coordination of funding; some Ministries spend the
money for completely different objectives. (LE MONDE 24/2)


The Mentor Foundation, a privately funded independent nonpolitical
organization, has launched a drug prevention campaign. Programmed for
free in movie theatres, it invites teenagers to solidarity. (LE FIGARO



Yes, I want to be member
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and I am enclosing a membership fee of .....................
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- no. 010381 to CORA, Deutsche Bank (Abi 3002, Cab 03270), Italy
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