------------------------------------------------------------------- NORML Weekly News (MS Patients To Receive Whole Smoked Marijuana In English Trials; Oakland City Council Votes To Shield Local Cannabis Dispensary From Federal Prosecution; North Carolina Appeals Court Rules Cops Can't Lie 'In Good Faith' To Secure Search Warrants; Off Campus Pot Arrest Not Grounds For Expulsion, Connecticut Supreme Court Rules) From: NORMLFNDTN@aol.com Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 17:31:54 EDT Subject: NORML WPR 7/30/98 (II) The NORML Foundation Weekly Press Release 1001 Connecticut Ave., NW Ste. 710 Washington, DC 20036 202-483-8751 (p) 202-483-0057 (f) www.norml.org firstname.lastname@example.org July 30, 1998 *** MS Patients To Receive Whole Smoked Marijuana In English Trials July 30, 1998, London, England: Clinical trials set to take place in England will examine the therapeutic effects of whole smoked marijuana on multiple sclerosis patients, a London researcher told a House of Lords select committee Tuesday. Dr. Geoffrey Guy, chairman of GW Pharmaceuticals, said that he hopes to begin administering marijuana to human subjects shortly. Guy received permission from the federal government in June to grow marijuana for medical research purposes. He said he hopes to license the drug as a legal medicine within five years. Guy said that several patients with MS report their spasticity improves after smoking marijuana, and discouraged efforts to synthesize medicinal compounds in the plant. "I don't see the value in taking apart something that seems to work at the moment," he said. Neurologist Denis Petro, who conducted clinical trials examining the effects of THC on spasticity during the 1980s, applauded efforts to study the medical benefits of whole smoked marijuana. Petro said that inhalation is an "ideal" delivery method for some patients, and speculated that marijuana's medical benefits come from several constituents in the plant, not just one isolated compound. "If [Dr. Guy's] studies focus on spasticity, the chances of a positive outcome are high," he said. Compounds in marijuana, particularly cannabidiol, have historically demonstrated value as potenial therapeutic agents for treating patients suffering from movement disorders, epilepsy and the spasticity associated with multiple sclerosis. Recently, NORML compiled abstracts of nearly twenty separate studies indicating therapeutic benefits of whole smoked marijuana and it's constituents on spasticity disorders. One of the strongest endorsements of marijuana's value in treating spasticity comes from the Drug Enforcement Agency's own Administrative Law Judge Francis Young. In 1988, after hearing two years of testimony regarding marijuana's potential as a therapeutic agent, Young ruled: "Marijuana 'has a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States' for spasticity from MS and other causes. It would be unreasonable, arbitrary, and capricious to find otherwise." Allen St. Pierre, Executive Director of The NORML Foundation, praised the impending research trials. "It is encouraging to see English researchers focusing on the medicinal potential of the entire plant instead of limiting their scope to include only isolated compounds or marijuana-like analogs. The United States government should follow England's lead and approve similar medical marijuana protocols." For more information, please contact either Allen St. Pierre of The NORML Foundation or Dr. Denis Petro @ (703) 528-2647. *** Oakland City Council Votes To Shield Local Cannabis Dispensary From Federal Prosecution July 30, 1998, Oakland, CA: The Oakland City Council unanimously passed an ordinance Wednesday designed to protect the city's local medical marijuana dispensary from federal criminal and civil liability. The ordinance allows city officials to "designate" the Oakland Cannabis Buyers' Cooperative to distribute medical marijuana to seriously ill patients. The legislation attempts to provide immunity to the Cooperative against a federal lawsuit aimed at closing the dispensary. Supporters of the ordinance believe that Section 885(d) of the Controlled Substances Act immunizes local officials who enforce local drug laws from federal sanctions. "Because the ordinance relies on provisions of federal law, it may be replicated in cities throughout the country, not just in California or other states that may pass laws similar to Proposition 215," said attorney Robert Raich, who drafted the measure. Oakland is the first city to apply the Controlled Substances Act in this manner, Raich said. For more information, please contact either Dale Gieringer of California NORML @ (415) 563-5858 or attorney Robert Raich @ (510) 338-0700. *** North Carolina Appeals Court Rules Cops Can't Lie "In Good Faith" To Secure Search Warrants July 30, 1998, Raleigh, NC: Police may not knowingly make false statements "in good faith" to a magistrate to attain a search warrant, the state Court of Appeals ruled on July 21. The Court dismissed a man's marijuana conviction because without the false statements, there did not exist probable cause to procure a search warrant. "It is shocking that this court of appeals decision would be necessary to convince the police in Raleigh that they must be truthful when seeking a warrant to search an individual's home," said NORML Executive Director R. Keith Stroup, Esq. "This case illustrates the corrosive effect the 'War on Drugs' has had on the Fourth Amendment protection against unreasonable search and seizure." Police officer R.A. McLeod filed an affidavit claiming he recovered "marijuana and cocaine from inside [the defendant's] residence, using investigative means." He subsequently testified that he had not entered the house, but instead discovered marijuana seeds in the defendant's curbside trash. He said he used the phrase "investigational means" because he believed local magistrates understood the term to mean a trash search, whereas the defense would not know the phrase's true meaning. McLeod claimed he did not intend to mislead the magistrate. "It remains undisputed that no one entered the defendant's residence; the statement to the contrary was false and the affiant knew that it was false," Judge Y. Edward Greene wrote for the unanimous three-judge panel. "Because the statements made by Detective McLeod were false and made in bad faith, they must be stricken from the affidavit." The Court further determined that the term "using investigational means" supports "our holding that the affidavit was entered in bad faith. [McLeod] testified that he used the words ... to conceal from the defendant how the evidence to support the search warrant was obtained." A review by a Charlotte newspaper found that nearly one-sixth of all search warrants issued for houses in that county bore the words "using investigational means." For more information, please contact either Keith Stroup of NORML @ (202) 483-5500 or attorney Tanya Kangas of The NORML Foundation @ (202) 483-8751. *** Off Campus Pot Arrest Not Grounds For Expulsion, State Supreme Court Rules July 30, 1998, Hartford, CT: A Connecticut school board's decision to expel a high school senior for possession of marijuana off school grounds violated constitutional guarantees, the state Supreme Court ruled this week. "A 'War on Drugs' does not have to be a war on the Constitution," said attorney William Conti, who challenged the school policy. "People have rights. An education is guaranteed in the Constitution. [This ruling] is a terrific victory for students everywhere." The high court determined a school board may only expel a student for an off-campus action that "markedly interrupts or severely impedes the day-to-day operation of a school," and not merely because the student's action violated school policy. The court stated that conduct such as a telephoned bomb threat, or threatening harm to a teacher while off campus were adequate grounds for expulsion. The court found the controlling statute too vague to support the school board's claim that the simple possession of marijuana off school grounds was "seriously disruptive [to] the educational process." For more information, please contact either attorney Keith Stroup of NORML @ (202) 483-5500 or attorney Tanya Kangas @ (202) 483-8751. - END -
------------------------------------------------------------------- Doctor-Aided Suicide Is Backed In Poll ('The Washington Post' Says A New Nationwide Poll Shows An Overwhelming Majority Of Americans Oppose Legislation Before Congress That Would Nullify Oregon's Unique Assisted Suicide Law - Sixty-Six Percent Of Respondents Said They Approved Of Oregon's Law And Would Favor Similar Legislation In Their Own State, While 30 Percent Disapproved Of The Oregon Law And The Introduction Of A Similar Law In Their State) Date: Fri, 31 Jul 1998 01:54:27 -0400 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US: Doctor-Aided Suicide Is Backed In Poll Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Paul Lewin Pubdate: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 Source: Washington Post Contact: http://washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/edit/letters/letterform.htm Website: http://www.washingtonpost.com/ Author: William Claiborne DOCTOR-AIDED SUICIDE IS BACKED IN POLL An overwhelming majority of Americans support physician-assisted suicide for the terminally ill and oppose legislation before Congress that would prohibit doctors from prescribing lethal doses to patients who want to hasten death, according to a new national opinion survey. The survey showed that, by 69 percent to 28 percent, respondents backed the right of terminally ill patients to receive help from physicians to end life. Seventy-two percent said they oppose federal legislation that would prohibit physicians from prescribing doses of medications, like barbiturates, that terminally ill patients could request to end their lives. Only 26 percent said they favored such legislation. The survey comes as Congress is considering a Lethal Drug Abuse Prevention Act that would allow the Drug Enforcement Administration to lift a doctor's license to prescribe controlled substances if he or she prescribes suicide doses of medications. The measure was introduced by Rep. Henry J. Hyde (R-Ill.) and Sen. Don Nickles (R-Okla.) after a ruling in June by Attorney General Janet Reno that the DEA does not have the authority to control physicians' care of terminally ill patients if a state enacts an assisted-suicide law. Hyde and Nickles are outspoken opponents of Oregon's Death With Dignity Law, which took effect nine months ago following two bitterly debated referendums and a long court battle. So far, there have been only five reported cases of people who have ended their lives under the Oregon law. It allows patients with six months or less to live to receive prescriptions for lethal doses of medications after making oral and written requests, obtaining consulting opinions by other physicians, waiting 15 days and notifying state health authorities. The opinion survey was conducted by an independent polling firm, GLS Research of Los Angeles, for three groups that advocate assisted suicide. It included 1,000 interviews conducted July 8 to 11, with a margin of error of 3.1 percent, GLS Research said. The results are scheduled to be released today at a news conference to be held here by the Oregon-based Compassion in Dying Federation and the Death With Dignity Legal Defense and Education Center, as well as the Death With Dignity National Center, headquartered in San Mateo, Calif. Sixty-six percent of the respondents said they approve of Oregon's assisted suicide law. The same percentage said they would favor a similar law in their own state. Only 30 percent disapproved of the Oregon law and the introduction of a similar law in their state. Advocates and opponents of assisted death in other states have been watching Oregon's experience with its law closely. Michigan is the only state where petition signatures have been gathered for a November ballot initiative. Barbara Coombs Lee, a nurse and lawyer who co-wrote the Oregon Death With Dignity Law and is director of Compassion in Dying, said the survey shows "a remarkable amount of support for laws like Oregon's and a growing awareness for the need for greater choice at the end of life." Coombs Lee said the poll data show surprisingly strong support for assisted suicide across political, age, gender and geographic lines. For instance, opposition to congressional action against physician-assisted suicide was 75 percent for Democrats, 78 percent for independents and 68 percent for Republicans. Similarly, the levels of support for the practice differed little between regions of the country. Copyright 1998 The Washington Post Company
------------------------------------------------------------------- Poll - Nation Sides With Oregon On Suicide Issue ('The Oregonian' Version) From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: "MN" (firstname.lastname@example.org) Subject: MN: US: OR: Poll: Nation Sides With Oregon On Suicide Issue Date: Sun, 2 Aug 1998 18:22:20 -0500 Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Pubdate: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 Source: Oregonian, The Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.oregonlive.com/ Author: Erin Hoover Barnett and Jim Barnett POLL: NATION SIDES WITH OREGON ON SUICIDE ISSUE * A survey says most think Congress should not interfere with the assisted-suicide law A national poll to be released today indicates that most people do not think Congress should interfere with Oregon's physician-assisted suicide law. Release of the poll, commissioned by assisted suicide supporters, falls the day before a U.S. Senate committee is scheduled to hear testimony on a bill that could derail the Oregon law. Pollsters hired by three advocacy groups used randomized dialing to interview 1,000 adults throughout the country from July 8 to 11. The poll has a margin of error of 3.1 percentage points. Assisted-suicide opponents were quick to poke holes in the poll's approach. For example, the poll refers to dying patients who wish to "end life" rather than use the potentially less palatable "commit suicide." The House and Senate are considering bills allowing the Drug Enforcement Administration to revoke doctors' federal drug-prescribing privileges if they prescribe controlled substances to assist in suicides. Many doctors could not practice without such privileges, a consequence that could shut down use of the assisted-suicide law. "We're very pleased with the numbers" in the poll, said Hannah Davidson , program director for the Oregon Death With Dignity Legal Defense and Education Center. Her organization commissioned the poll along with Compassion in Dying, based in Portland, and the Death With Dignity National Center in San Mateo, Calif. "Take away the rhetoric, and people feel they would like this option for themselves, and they don't want the federal government involved in the relationship between the patient and the physician," Davidson said. Advocates gave the poll results to Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore. Wyden is scheduled to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Friday on the bill Sen. Don Nickles, R-Okla., introduced in June. The poll repeatedly hits on themes of federal intervention, states' rights and the right to die. Responses consistently oppose federal intervention and favor the other themes. Among the poll's findings: * Seventy-five percent of those responding said Congress "should not overturn" Oregon's law. * Seventy-two percent opposed "federal legislation that would prohibit physicians from prescribing medications that terminally ill patients could request to end life." * Eighty percent agreed that because Oregon voters "overwhelmingly approved the state law allowing terminally ill patients in Oregon to get a prescription for medication to end life, Congress should respect the will of these voters." * Seventy-four percent agreed that "people in the final stages of a terminal disease who are suffering and in pain should have the right to get help from their doctor to end life." The poll's findings on whether assisted suicide should be legal were similar to previous national polls. A Gallup poll in 1996, for example, found that 75 percent of Americans favored giving doctors the legal right "to end the (incurably ill) patient's life by some painless means if the patient and the family request it." Burke Balch, director of medical ethics for the National Right to Life Committee, criticized the Death With Dignity poll because it "never once can bring itself to mention suicide or assisted suicide." Balch said respondents could think that "ending a patient's life" meant withdrawing life support, which is different from assisted suicide. Polling organizations recognize that changing the wording of a question can alter the response. In July 1996, Gallup used "to end life" for half of its interviews and found 69 percent in favor of an assisted-suicide law. With the other half of the interviews, pollsters used "commit suicide"; 52 percent of respondents were in favor. Dr. Thomas Reardon, a Portland doctor who is president-elect of the American Medical Association, questioned the effectiveness of the latest poll. The AMA opposes assisted suicide. But the group also has been the most powerful opponent of anti-assisted suicide legislation now in Congress. The organization fears that the additional oversight of doctors mandated in the House and Senate bills could keep doctors from prescribing adequate medication to keep dying patients comfortable. Reardon said the AMA agrees that the federal government should not interfere with doctors' treatment of patients. He thinks the strong anti-government intervention sentiment found in the poll was predictable. "Nobody really wants the federal government in their life for any reason, let alone when it comes to determining how they die," he said. In Washington, advocates on both sides of the assisted-suicide question are girding for a showdown Friday at the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing. In addition to Wyden, Sen. Gordon Smith, R-Ore., plans to testify. Wyden, though opposed to assisted suicide, likely will restate his belief that Congress should honor the will of Oregon voters. Smith, also an opponent of assisted suicide, is expected to highlight what he considers to be flaws in the Oregon law, an aide said. He supports federal efforts to block the law but plans to tell the committee he is concerned that the Nickles bill would retroactively punish Oregon doctors who have already assisted in suicides. Prospects for the Nickles bill and its companion in the House, introduced by Rep. Henry Hyde, R-Ill., are uncertain. Congress has a limited number of working days this year. But the bills enjoy broad support and could be attached to an annual spending bill, which President Clinton would have to sign or face a partial government shutdown Oct. 1. In preparation for the hearing, Wyden and Rep. Darlene Hooley, D-Ore., plan to emphasize at a news conference today their determination to develop policies to promote better care for terminally ill patients. Wyden and Hooley have not committed to writing legislation but say they want to make assisted suicide rare. Joining them will be representatives of the American College of Physicians, the American Geriatrics Society, the American Pharmaceutical Association and the National Hospice Organization.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Urgent Alert - DEA Versus Pain Treatment (The Drug Reform Coordination Network Asks You To Join With The The American Medical Association And The American Geriatrics Society And Write To Your Senators And Congressional Representative To Stop HR 4006, Would Nullify Oregon's Unique Assisted Suicide Law And Have A Disastrous Effect On Pain Management) Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 18:06:03 -0400 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: DRCNet (email@example.com) Subject: URGENT ALERT: DEA VS. PAIN TREATMENT Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org *** DRUG REFORM COORDINATION NETWORK RAPID RESPONSE TEAM *** ALERT: DEA VS. PAIN TREATMENT (7/30/98) *** Please copy and distribute. (To sign off this list, mailto:email@example.com with the line "signoff drc-natl" in the body of the message, or mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance. To subscribe to this list, visit http://www.drcnet.org/signup.html.) [This has been a busy week legislatively, hence the extra postings. DRCNet will still only be making one post during the typical week.] (This bulletin is forwarded from Kendra Wright at Common Sense for Drug Policy. Note that DRCNet has no position on physician-assisted suicide, but that there are other important reasons to oppose this bill, which are laid out below. Last Sunday's Doonesbury gave a cutting commentary on the impact of the war on drugs on pain treatment, a problem that would be worsened by this bill. To see it, go to http://www.sacbee.com/smile/comix/main.html, follow the Doonesbury link and select July 26. For more info on the pain treatment issue, visit the American Society for Action on Pain, at http://www.actiononpain.org. We will be posting information during the coming weeks about certain compassionate physicians who have become victims of the DEA and other drug law enforcers. Visit Common Sense for Drug Policy at http://www.drugsense.org/csdp/.) *** URGENT -- PAIN MANAGEMENT LEGISLATION ON FAST TRACK -- DISTRIBUTE WIDELY CALL YOUR SENATORS BEFORE FRIDAY, JULY 31 at 10 AM & YOUR CONGRESSMAN BEFORE WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 5. IF YOUR MEMBERS ARE ON THE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE, YOUR INPUT IS ESSENTIAL! The American Medical Association and the American Geriatrics Society are seeking assistance to stop legislation which will have a disastrous effect on pain management. HR 4006 introduced by Congressman Hyde (R-IL) and S. 2151 introduced by Senator Nickles (R-OK), seek to prevent assisted suicide by authorizing the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) to revoke or suspend the federal prescription license of a physician who "intentionally dispensed or distributed a controlled substance with a purpose of causing or assisting in causing" suicide. The legislation would also create a Medical Review Board on Pain Relief to allow physicians accused of violating the law to demonstrate that their prescribing patterns were to relieve pain. Once again, the Drug War is hindering the patient-doctor relationship. Whether or not you support physician-assisted suicide this is bad legislation because: * it will have an adverse effect on pain management and result in more Americans suffering needlessly. * unrelieved pain is already a widespread problem as illustrated by a number of studies (the SUPPORT study showed 50% of patients experience moderate to severe pain at least half the time in their last days of life). * A 1997 Institute of Medicine study found "drug- prescribing laws, regulations, and interpretations by state medical boards frustrate and initimidate physicians" and result in pain that is inadequately treated. * many doctors are already reluctant to prescribe adequate pain relief due to possible violations of existing pain- prescription laws. This proposed legislation, which would have the DEA investigating allegations of wrongdoing and determining "intent," would greatly exacerbate the problem. * contrary to its intent, the bill may prompt an increased demand for assisted suicide from patients whose pain is intolerable. If you don't want to see your family and loved ones suffer needlessly, take a moment to voice your objection to this bill! For a list of Senate Judiciary Committee members with contact information: http://www.senate.gov/committee/judiciary.html For a list of House Judiciary Committee members with contact information: http://www.house.gov/judiciary/mem105.htm TAKE ACTION! CALL YOUR CONGRESSMAN AND SENATORS TODAY! To read a Washington Post news article on this legislation which cites polling data which found "seventy-two percent [of Americans] oppose federal legislation that would prohibit physicians from prescribing doses of medications... that terminally ill patients could request to end their lives," access: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/national/daily/july98/suicide.htm *** This message brought to you by the Drug Reform Coordination Network's rapid-response-team e-mail list. If you are not already subscribed to DRCNet, please visit our "quick sign- up" form at http://www.drcnet.org/signup.html. Help support DRCNet by making a donation or participating in the eyegive online fundraising program. To pledge or give by credit card use our secure registration form at http://www.drcnet.org/drcreg.html. To designate DRCNet as your eyegive recipient non-profit (absolutely free), visit http://www.eyegive.com/html/ssi.cfm?CID=1060, or visit their main page at http://www.eyegive.com if you are already signed up to raise money for DRCNet. Donations can also be mailed to 2000 P St., NW, Suite 615, Washington, DC 20036. Please note that contributions to DRCNet are not tax-deductible. For information on how to make a tax-deductible donation to support our educational work, send e-mail to email@example.com. *** DRCNet *** JOIN/MAKE A DONATION http://www.drcnet.org/drcreg.html DRUG POLICY LIBRARY http://www.druglibrary.org/ REFORMER'S CALENDAR http://www.drcnet.org/calendar.html SUBSCRIBE TO THIS LIST http://www.drcnet.org/signup.html DRCNet HOME PAGE http://www.drcnet.org/ ONLINE LIBRARY http://www.druglibrary.org/
------------------------------------------------------------------- Action Alert - Oppose Bills That Threaten Effective Pain Management (The Common Sense For Drug Policy Version Distributed By The Drug Policy Foundation) Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 17:48:54 EDT Errors-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Originator: firstname.lastname@example.org Sender: email@example.com From: "Drug Policy News Service" (firstname.lastname@example.org) To: Multiple recipients of list (email@example.com) Subject: ACTION ALERT: Oppose Bills that Threaten Effective Pain Management The following was sent to DPF by Common Sense for Drug Policy (http://www.drugsense.org). *** URGENT -- PAIN MANAGEMENT LEGISLATION ON FAST TRACK -- DISTRIBUTE WIDELY CALL YOUR SENATORS BEFORE FRIDAY, JULY 31 at 10 AM & YOUR CONGRESSMAN BEFORE WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 5. IF YOUR MEMBERS ARE ON THE JUDICIARY COMMITTEES, YOUR INPUT IS ESSENTIAL! The American Medical Association and the American Geriatrics Society are seeking assistance to stop legislation which will have a disastrous effect on pain management. HR 4006 introduced by Congressman Hyde (R-IL) and S. 2151 introduced by Senator Nickles (R-OK), seek to prevent assisted suicide by authorizing the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) to revoke or suspend the federal prescription license of a physician who "intentionally dispensed or distributed a controlled substance with a purpose of causing or assisting in causing" suicide. The legislation would also create a Medical Review Board on Pain Relief to allow physicians accused of violating the law to demonstrate that their prescribing patterns were to relieve pain. Once again, the Drug War is hindering the patient-doctor relationship. Whether or not you support physician-assisted suicide this is bad legislation because: * it will have an adverse effect on pain management and result in more Americans suffering needlessly. * unrelieved pain is already a widespread problem as illustrated by a number of studies (the SUPPORT study showed 50% of patients experience moderate to severe pain at least half the time in their last days of life). * A 1997 Institute of Medicine study found "drug-prescribing laws, regulations, and interpretations by state medical boards frustrate and initimidate physicians" and result in pain that is inadequately treated. * many doctors are already reluctant to prescribe adequate pain relief due to possible violations of existing pain-prescription laws. This proposed legislation, which would have the DEA investigating allegations of wrongdoing and determining "intent," would greatly exacerbate the problem. * contrary to its intent, the bill may prompt an increased demand for assisted suicide from patients whose pain is intolerable. If you don't want to see your family and loved ones suffer needlessly, take a moment to voice your objection to this bill! For a list of Senate Judiciary Committee members with contact information: http://www.senate.gov/committee/judiciary.html For a list of House Judiciary Committee members with contact information: http://www.house.gov/judiciary/mem105.htm TAKE ACTION! CALL YOUR CONGRESSMAN AND SENATORS TODAY! To read a Washington Post news article on this legislation which cites polling data which found "seventy-two percent [of Americans] oppose federal legislation that would prohibit physicians from prescribing doses of medications...that terminally ill patients could request to end their lives," access: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/national/daily/july98/suicide.htm *** To join DPF's Drug Policy News Service, please send email to: firstname.lastname@example.org with the following message in the body of the email: subscribe dpnews Firstname Lastname. To sign off this list, mailto: email@example.com with the line "signoff dpnews" in the body of the message. *** The Drug Policy Foundation "Creating Reasoned and Compassionate Drug Policies" 4455 Connecticut Ave. NW, Suite B-500 Washington, DC 20008-2328 ph: (202) 537-5005 * fax: (202) 537-3007 firstname.lastname@example.org www.dpf.org www.drugpolicy.org
------------------------------------------------------------------- Washington State Initiative Qualifies (Dave Fratello Of Americans For Medical Rights Breaks The News That Initiative 692, AMR's Medical Marijuana Measure, Has Been Certified For The November Ballot, And Includes An Update On The Current Status Of AMR Medical Marijuana Initiative Campaigns In Other States) Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 22:47:36 GMT To: "AMR/updates.list" From: Dave Fratello (email@example.com) Subject: Wash. St. init qualifies The news is official as of this hour - the Washington State medical marijuana initiative -- I-692 -- has been certified for the November ballot! CURRENTLY CERTIFIED: Alaska Oregon Washington State NOTICE PENDING: Colorado Nevada NOV. '99: Maine Congrats again to all involved... - dave fratello
------------------------------------------------------------------- Medical Marijuana On Washington State Ballot ('Reuters' Says Initiative 692, Sponsored By Washington Citizens For Medical Rights, Has Been Certified For The November Ballot) Date: Fri, 31 Jul 1998 10:30:33 -0700 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US WA: Wire: Medical Marijuana on Wash. State Ballot Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: David.Hadorn@vuw.ac.nz (David Hadorn) Source: Reuters Pubdate: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 MEDICAL MARIJUANA ON WASH. STATE BALLOT OLYMPIA, Wash., (Reuters) -- A citizens initiative to legalize the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes will appear on the statewide ballot in November, Washington state officials said Thursday. State election officials said they had certified 198,378 signatures as valid, about 19,000 more than the required number needed to place the proposal before the voters. Washington joins Oregon and Alaska as the three states that will put the question of medicinal marijuana use before the public as a ballot initiative this fall. Similar proposals are pending in Colorado and Nevada. Voters in California and Arizona have approved measures in recent years to legalize medicinal use of marijuana, but legal challenges and other controversies in both states have prevented full implementation. ``I'm looking forward to a good campaign,'' said Washington state initiative sponsor Dr. Robert Killian. ``There'll be a lot more media attention probably nationally because of this. And I'm ready for it.'' The Washington state proposition permits patients suffering from terminal or debilitating illnesses -- such as cancer, multiple sclerosis, or AIDS -- to get a doctor's authorization to smoke marijuana. Patients would have to come up with the drug on their own after receiving authorization. Killian said most patients would probably grow the plant themselves. Non-medical use of marijuana would still be prohibited. The medical marijuana legalization campaign in the Pacific Northwest has been bankrolled almost entirely by three multimillionaires. New York financier George Soros, Progressive Insurance CEO Peter Lewis of Cleveland, and Phoenix businessman John Sperling each donated $125,000 to the Washington state ballot campaign and gave smaller amounts to the Oregon effort. Last November, Washington state voters soundly rejected a broader drug reform initiative bankrolled by the same three men and run by Killian. That effort sought to ease jail sentences for low-level drug crimes and legalize medical use of a broad range of prohibited drugs, including heroin. Killian predicted better chances for passage this year now that the ballot measure has been narrowed to the concept he claimed has the widest popular support: allowing people suffering from intractable pain to use marijuana.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Medicinal Marijuana Initiative Qualifies For Fall Ballot ('The Associated Press' Version) Date: Fri, 31 Jul 1998 11:45:30 -0400 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US WA: WIRE: Medicinal Marijuana Initiative Qualifies For Fall Ballot Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org (Frank S. World) Source: Associated Press Pubdate: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 MEDICINAL MARIJUANA INITIATIVE QUALIFIES FOR FALL BALLOT OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) - An initiative to legalize medicinal use of marijuana was certified Thursday for the state's November general election ballot. Initiative 692 would allow people who are dying or suffering from debilitating illness to grow and smoke marijuana if it is prescribed by a doctor. The initiative relied on paid signature-gatherers and was certified by the secretary of state as having the required 179,248 of registered voters. The marijuana initiative was pushed by Dr. Rob Killian of Tacoma after last year's defeat of a far broader drug legalization initiative. In 1996, voters in California and Arizona approved ballot issues legalizing marijuana for medical use, but Arizona's lawmakers blocked it. The federal government considers medical marijuana illegal and has prosecuted its use in California. Copyright 1998 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Davis Tops Lungren In Examiner Poll ('The San Francisco Examiner' Says Its Poll On Who's Leading The Race To Be California's Next Governor Finds Democrat Gray Davis Ahead 48 Percent To 39 Percent Against Dan Lungren, The Nemesis Of Proposition 215 - But In The Past, California Republicans Have Shown Summer Polls Don't Mean Much) From: "W.H.E.N. - Bob Owen - Olympia" (email@example.com) To: "-Hemp Talk" (firstname.lastname@example.org) Subject: HT: CA Demo tops Lungren in CA poll Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 20:35:04 -0700 Sender: email@example.com Davis tops Lungren in Examiner poll By Robert Salladay San Francisco Examiner EXAMINER CAPITOL BUREAU Thursday, July 30, 1998 SACRAMENTO -- In the first voter survey since the raucous and wildly expensive June primary, an Examiner poll shows Lt. Gov. Gray Davis is favored over Attorney General Dan Lungren, particularly among women and independent voters, in the race for governor. The poll of Californians likely to vote in the Nov. 3 election found Davis, a Democrat, was the choice of 48 percent of those surveyed while 39 percent favored Republican Lungren. Thirteen percent were undecided. The differences between the candidates were most pronounced among women, who said they favored Davis by 53 percent to 34 percent for Lungren. And the fastest-growing group of California voters -- independents -- favored Davis 51 percent to 31 percent, according to the poll. The survey comes as Davis and Lungren prepared to debate Friday evening in San Diego, the first of five televised forums scheduled before the election, and as Davis prepares to launch in August his first post-primary series of TV ads. "Davis has clearly seized the early advantage," said Del Ali, senior vice president of Mason-Dixon Political-Media Research of Columbia, Md., which conducted The Examiner poll. "I think it's going to be very important for Lungren to portray himself as a centrist. For him to throw a bone to the far right between now and November would be suicide." The random telephone poll of 832 Californians was conducted Sunday through Tuesday. All those surveyed said they regularly vote in state elections. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.5 percentage points. As expected, the poll showed Davis with strong support in the Bay Area and metropolitan Los Angeles, traditional Democratic strongholds. Lungren had a smaller margin of support in traditional Republican areas -- rural Northern California, the Central Valley and San Diego. Most people surveyed viewed Davis more favorably than Lungren, although more than a third of those polled picked "neutral" when asked their opinions about the candidates. Lungren's "unfavorable" rating -- 19 percent of those surveyed -- has remained the same since the last Examiner poll, conducted in May shortly before the June 2 primary. But fewer people viewed Davis unfavorably in the latest Examiner poll -- 13 percent compared to 16 percent in May. While the June primary campaign was dominated by the massive amount of money being spent on negative TV ads, the November election threatens to be about issues: abortion, offshore oil drilling, assault weapons, tobacco, education, crime and taxes. Democrat multimillionaires Al Checchi and Rep. Jane Harman, D-Rolling Hills, the duo who helped make the June primary the most expensive in U.S. history, endorsed Davis after they lost. An estimated $64 million was spent on the primary by the three Democrats and Lungren. The Lungren campaigners may not be worried about The Examiner's poll results or the debate: They only need to look at history. During the summer of 1990, polls showed Democrat Dianne Feinstein with a 5-point edge over Republican Pete Wilson in the gubernatorial race. She lost. Four years later, polls showed Democrat Kathleen Brown supported by more voters than Wilson during the summer, as well. Wilson was re-elected by 55 percent to 41 percent over Brown. Dave Puglia, campaign manager for Lungren, said the campaign's own polls show Davis and Lungren in a dead heat, with Lungren competing strongly for female voters and gathering support from independents. Puglia criticized Davis for campaigning on periphery issues that have little to do with the daily lives of Californians while Lungren is sticking to the things that matter most -- crime, schools and the economy. Davis has been attempting to hammer Lungren for many of the controversial decisions he made as a member of the House of Representatives for 10 years and as state attorney general for eight years. "It's strange that in the course of 24 hours, before and after the primary, Gray Davis decided voters no longer care about education, crime and taxes," Puglia said. "As you look at those issues, they are the ones voters will be making their decisions on." During the debate Friday, viewers can expect Davis to mention his service in Vietnam and his long record of holding public jobs -- from assemblyman to state controller to lieutenant governor. And he'll likely hit Lungren for being less than aggressive in upholding the state's assault weapons laws and for not more quickly pursuing a state-sponsored lawsuit against tobacco companies to recoup health care costs. Expect Davis also to mention his support of abortion rights and Lungren's opposition to state funding for the procedure. Analysts believe the gender gap between Davis and Lungren may in part be due to the abortion question, although the Lungren campaign believes most voters don't use the issue as a litmus test. Michael Bustamante, spokesman for Davis, said Lungren is "out of sync with what the voters of California are thinking." But the phlegmatic Davis has a much bigger task during the debate than Lungren, at least on one important issue. "Davis has got to loosen up," said H. Eric Shockman, a political scientist at USC. "He's a bright man. He's obviously been in many elected offices, but he doesn't have the mediagenic transfer. Lungren appears to be, believe it or not, very energetic."
------------------------------------------------------------------- Judicial Illogic (A Staff Editorial In 'The Orange County Register' Faults Superior Court Judge Robert Fitzgerald For Denying Medical Marijuana Patient And Orange County Cannabis Co-Op Founder Marvin Chavez The Ability To Invoke Proposition 215 In His Defense) Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 10:55:47 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US CA: Editorial: Judicial Illogic Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk:John W.Black Pubdate: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 Source: Orange County Register (CA) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.ocregister.com/ JUDICIAL ILLOGIC There's a fundamental contradiction at the center of Superior Court Judge Robert Fitzgerald's rulings last Friday in the case of Marvin Chavez, a patient who founded the Orange County Cannabis Co-Op, which has tried to create an above-board "white market" for patients whose doctors believe they could benefit from medical marijuana. On the one hand, Judge Fitzgerald upheld the prosecution's request to be given access to the Co-Op member's medical records, in order to access (presumably from a prosecutor's perspective) whether those who joined the club actually had valid maladies. The most compelling prosecution argument was that the police had entrapped Mr. Chavez with a phony doctor's note; so.maybe there were other phony notes in the Co-Op files. Should prosecutors be in the business of second-guessing licensed doctors or penetrating the doctor-patient relationship to conduct a fishing expedition whose main purpose seems to be intimidation? Judge Fitzgerald didn't address those questions in his ruling. But in making the ruling, he acknowledged, as prosecutors have certainly acknowledged, that Mr. Chavez's Co-Op has records that include notes from doctors. That means the organization is engaged in activities related to Prop. 215, which allows patients with recommendations from doctors to grow and possess marijuana. Mr. Chavez may be trying to implement Prop. 215 imperfectly, foolishly or even illegally. His organization might not be a bona fide "primary caregiver" as the proposition defines the term. But there's no question his activities are related to the initiative California voters approved in 1996. Certainly there's no evidence that he has made a lot of money from his activities; if anything the evidence is to the contrary. In this regard, Judge Fitzgerald's ruling that Mr. Chavez cannot use Prop. 215 in his defense at his upcoming trial for selling marijuana is logically inexplicable. The ruling can only be understood from a certain narrow legal perspective. Orange County Deputy D.A. Cecil Armbrust has argued that since Prop. 215 did not specifically authorize sales then all sales are still illegal, even if cloaked as "donations." (The proposition, however, did speak of the government implementing a system for "safe and affordable" distribution, which seems to imply money might change hands.) So, according to this reasoning, if the case involves selling marijuana, Prop. 215 doesn't come into play and shouldn't even be mentioned. But that's a legal reading that ignores the reality. It is widely known that Marvin Chavez has been trying to set up an organization to provide marijuana to medical patients, who since November 1996 have had a legal right to it. Granted, perhaps he hasn't done it properly. Why couldn't the authorities work with him to operate under proper guidelines - unless they anticipate the county government setting up a program to grow marijuana and distribute it to bona fide patients? The alternative is to wink and send patients who have a legal right to possess marijuana to the streets to find it, which only strengthens the black market. Is that what prosecutors and law enforcement officials want to do? To treat Marvin Chavez as "just a marijuana dealer" and to forbid any mention of Prop. 215 at his trial is to perpetrate a fiction in the courtroom and deny the jury relevant information. The only explanation that makes sense is that certain people in the law-enforcement and judicial community are determined not to find a way to implement the law the people voted for, but to prove that it can't be implemented and the people were foolish. Mr. Chavez's attorneys say Judge Fitzgerald's decisions will be appealed, and they expect to prevail on appeal. Judging from appeals court rulings to date on medical marijuana-related cases, they will probably be successful. But that outcome won't excuse Judge Fitzgerald's illogical rulings.
------------------------------------------------------------------- No Marijuana Joints In Concord, Even Without Ordinance ('The Contra Costa Times' Confusingly Suggests City Officials In The San Francisco Bay Area Community Of Concord Will Not Comply With The Mandate In The California Compassionate Use Act To Find A Way To Provide Safe And Affordable Medical Marijuana To Patients Who Need It, And In Particular Will Not Allow Any Dispensaries To Open) Date: Sun, 09 Aug 1998 18:55:18 -0400 To: DrugSense News Service
From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US CA: No Marijuana Joints In Concord, Even Without Ordinance Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org (Frank S. World) Source: Contra Costa Times (CA) Contact: email@example.com Pubdate: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 Website: http://www.hotcoco.com/index.htm Author: Andrew Gordon, Staff Writer NO MARIJUANA JOINTS IN CONCORD, EVEN WITHOUT ORDINANCE Concord has indicated that state and federal laws have snuffed out any hopes of medicinal marijuana dispensaries in the city, even if Concord wanted such establishments, which it doesn't. The City Council adopted an urgency ordinance July 22, 1997, prohibiting the establishment of medicinal marijuana dispensaries in Concord, and renewed the ordinance Sept. 2, 1997. The unanimous vote to ban such joints was in reaction to Prop. 215, approved by voters in 1996. The proposition allowed California residents to grow or possess marijuana for medicinal purposes, and only when recommended by a doctor. The city's ordinance banning dispensaries expired June 17. But Assistant City Attorney Mark Boehme pointed out that state and federal law prohibits the establishment of such places. So even if Concord condoned such businesses, federal law would supersede. At a council subcommittee on policy development and internal operations meeting July 10, Mayor Mark Peterson and Vice Mayor Mike Pastrick agreed that the ordinance be allowed to burn out, pointing to federal and state laws. Pastrick likened the issue to building casinos or brothels in Concord. Even if the City Council approved such uses, he pointed out, federal and state law would overrule such decisions. On the federal level, marijuana is listed as a substance that cannot be prescribed by a doctor because it has not been accepted for medical use. In California, Attorney General Dan Lungren has pointed out that while Prop. 215 protects the growth and use of medicinal marijuana for personal use, it says nothing about the sale or transportation of medicinal marijuana. And locally, District Attorney Gary Yancey has insisted that he will enforce the Health and Safety code section pertaining to marijuana. Recognizing the federal, state and local barriers against marijuana, Peterson and Pastrick indicated that it would be best just to let the Concord ordinance end. When the council first considered the ban last year, a Martinez resident had been inquiring about the possibility of setting up a medicinal marijuana business in Concord. Beyond that, there has been very little interest in establishing such dispensaries.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Tainted Drug Justice (A Letter To The Editor Of 'The San Francisco Examiner' Says The War On Some Drug Users Would Become Nearly Impossible Should The Recent Ruling By The 10th Circuit Court Of Appeals Stand, That The Judicial Process Is Tainted And Justice Thwarted When Testimony Is Purchased With Offers Of Leniency) Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 21:47:47 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US CA: PUB LTE: Tainted Drug Justice Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Jerry Sutliff Pubdate: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 Source: San Francisco Examiner (CA) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.examiner.com/ TAINTED DRUG JUSTICE Milton Friedman pointed out over 25 years ago that prohibitionary laws are at their core corrupting of law enforcement, the judicial system and society itself. Drug transactions between seller and buyer are consensual - neither makes the complaint about the activity. Consequently, law enforcement authorities resort to using informants to obtain convictions. This leads inevitably to a point where, as was said by the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, "The judicial process is tainted and justice cheapened when factual testimony is purchased, whether with leniency or money" ("Loss of plea deals perils war on crime," July 20). The war on drugs would become nearly impossible should the 10th Circuit decision stand. For that reason I am confident the decision will not. The verbal contortions required to reverse the dead-on correct decision will make interesting reading. GERALD M. SUTLIFF Emeryville
------------------------------------------------------------------- Ex-Prison Officers Say State Ignored Charges ('The Los Angeles Times' Says Two Former Supervisors And A Former Guard At Corcoran State Prison Told A Legislative Hearing Wednesday That Their Attempts To Draw Attention To Questionable Inmate Shooting Deaths By Guards Were Ignored At The Highest Levels Of The California Department Of Corrections, As Well As By An Unnamed Official In The Wilson Administration Who Sounds A Lot Like Attorney General Dan Lungren) From: "W.H.E.N. - Bob Owen - Olympia" (email@example.com) To: "-News" (firstname.lastname@example.org) Subject: CA prison brutality cover-up Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 20:32:25 -0700 Sender: email@example.com Thursday, July 30, 1998 Los Angeles Times Ex-Prison Officers Say State Ignored Charges Hearing: They tell legislators frustration drove them to the FBI to allege brutality at Corcoran facility. By MARK ARAX, MARK GLADSTONE, Times Staff Writers SACRAMENTO--Two former supervisors and a former guard at Corcoran State Prison told a legislative hearing Wednesday that their attempts to draw attention to questionable inmate shooting deaths by guards were ignored at the highest levels of the state Department of Corrections, as well as by an official in the Wilson administration. With nowhere else to turn, Facility Capt. Ralph Mineau, former Lt. Steve Rigg and former guard Richard Caruso said they had to take their complaints about brutality and cover-ups at the prison to the FBI in 1994. In turn, they said, they were met with death threats and intimidation from fellow officers and supervisors, threats they say were ignored by then-Warden George Smith. "I am a whistle-blower. I am not sorry for the action I took," Rigg told the joint panel in sworn testimony. "I am sorry I put my family through the horrors of the reprisals and harassment we have been subjected to. "My career came to an abrupt end. I am sorry I have been threatened with death or harm. I am sorry my wife is frightened to sleep in our home at night and often sleeps on the bathroom floor fearing an ambush." Four years after the three officers and others came forward to provide evidence about flawed prison policies and questionable shootings, they said no one at the Department of Corrections or the state attorney general's office has thoroughly investigated the shootings that led to seven inmate deaths and 43 woundings. Indeed, Caruso testified, a special team of Corrections Department investigators dispatched to Corcoran last year at the behest of Gov. Pete Wilson investigated and disciplined only one officer involved in a shooting. That officer was Caruso, and the shooting was one that resulted in no injuries to the inmates participating in a fistfight. "Out of [all the] incidents at Corcoran State Prison with firearms, the only one this team looked into was me," Caruso said, turning to top corrections officials. "And the only one your office disciplined was me, the whistle-blower." The legislative hearings, in their second day, were called by four committees to look into the allegations against Corcoran guards and officials and into whether the Wilson administration and state attorney general's office failed to adequately investigate problems at the prison. The administration and attorney general's office cite an ongoing federal investigation as the reason they decided not to delve into the shooting deaths during two state probes in 1996 and 1997. Rigg testified that he called Craig Brown, then undersecretary of the state Youth and Adult Correctional Agency, with complaints in 1994. A corrections official said later Wednesday that Rigg never put his complaints in writing, so Brown, now Wilson's finance director, did not meet with him. Rigg and the others also said their complaints were shunned by Eddie Myers, the deputy director of the Corrections Department. He refused to take their calls, they said. "Eddie Myers would not talk to me," Rigg testified. "He told the lieutenant that he didn't want to know who I was or my name." Myers declined Wednesday to discuss the allegation. Wednesday's session dealt in large part with the accounts of the three whistle-blowers who kicked off the FBI investigation out of frustration with what they termed a wide-scale cover-up of shooting deaths and other brutality. The shootings occurred during prison yard fights watched over by guards. Internal reports show that in all but a few cases, the inmates did not carry weapons or cause so much as a swollen lip while brawling. The whistle-blowers traced much of the violence to the department's so-called integration policy--the practice of mixing rival gang members into the same small exercise yards inside Corcoran's security housing unit. "The integrated yard policy in the SHU was a loser," said Mineau, who transferred to High Desert Prison in Susanville after he was threatened at Corcoran. Rigg said the policy led to countless fistfights that ended with guards firing gas guns that discharged wood blocks and, occasionally, deadly assault rifles--all in the name of stopping brawling inmates from injuring each other. He said state shooting review boards, which ruled every shooting justified, were composed of friendly wardens and associate wardens. "I have reviewed every shooting review from Corcoran and have yet to find a clean shooting, yet to find a shooting that was within departmental policy," said Rigg, an FBI-trained firearms expert. "You cannot shoot the victim of a fistfight and call it a good shooting. . . . You cannot use a firearm to stop a stand-up fistfight." Department of Corrections officials concede that there were deep problems at Corcoran but say most of them have been addressed under its new warden, George Galaza, and the state's new corrections director, Cal Terhune. They say the integrated yard policy has been modified in the past two years. No serious shooting injuries or deaths have taken place at Corcoran since 1995. "There have been problems, but the department has been working to resolve them as they come up and do things better," Corrections Department spokesman Tip Kindel said Wednesday. Former guard Caruso, who took key documents about the shootings out of the prison and handed them to the FBI, disputed that the system was fixed. "The reason Corcoran got cleaned up was not the new warden. Don't be fooled," he told legislators. "It was because of me and the other whistle-blowers. But they didn't clean it all up. A lot of the officers involved in these incidents are still there." Caruso was involved in more discharges of the wood-block gun at inmates than any other gunner at Corcoran, before he took a stress leave two years ago. An investigation into one of those shootings was later reopened by the corrections investigation team that did not probe the fatal and serious shootings at Corcoran. "The special investigation team came to me and said, 'Richard, you're the key to this investigation,' " he said. " 'Without your testimony, we can't get to the bottom of what's going on.' "They ended up investigating and disciplining me." During Rigg's testimony, the partisan nature of the hearings flared when Assemblyman Jan Goldsmith (R-Poway) challenged the witness' veracity, implying that, because Rigg had signed a movie deal, parts of his testimony could not be believed. The assemblyman's suggestion sparked an angry exchange along party lines, with Democrats arguing that his comments were pointless. Late Wednesday evening, former Corrections Department Chief James Gomez testified that it was not until late 1994 that he first heard about problems with shootings at Corcoran. This was after seven inmates had been shot dead over five years. He also said he was not aware until this week's hearings that wardens could pick wardens from other state penal institutions to staff prison shooting review boards. That practice, he said, was wrong. Gomez, when asked why the investigation team he put into place did not look into any of the serious or fatal shootings, expressed surprise. "I would have expected they would have looked at all the facts relative to that three- or four-year period." He said the only restriction that federal authorities placed on state investigators was to steer clear of a single fatal 1994 shooting and a few related items. Also testifying late Wednesday were members of the corrections investigations team. Member Bryan Neeley said the team was not allowed to use all the available investigative tools in its probe. The investigators were told they could not invoke a provision of the state government code requiring peace officers to cooperate with a criminal investigation or face insubordination charges, he said. That tool, Neeley said, was taken away "by someone in Sacramento." He could not say by whom. The hearings will continue today.
------------------------------------------------------------------- At Hearing, Ex-Prison Director Defends Actions In Probe ('The San Francisco Chronicle' Says The Second Day Of A Special Legislative Hearing Investigating Violence At Corcoran State Prison Yesterday Featured Former Corrections Department Director James Gomez Defending His Handling Of An Investigation Of Violence At The San Joaquin Valley Prison - Explosive Growth In The Number Of Inmates And Guards Has Made The State Prison System Unmanageable, He Said) Date: Sun, 02 Aug 1998 19:03:19 -0500 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US CA: At Hearing, Ex-Prison Director Defends Actions In Probe Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org (Tom O'Connell) Source: San Francisco Chronicle (CA) Pubdate: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 Page: A 17 Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.sfgate.com/chronicle/ Author: Robert S. Gunnison - Chronicle Sacramento Bureau AT HEARING, EX-(PRISON) DIRECTOR DEFENDS ACTIONS IN PROBE Growth Added to Prisons' Troubles Sacramento Explosive growth in the number of inmates and guards has made the state prison system unmanageable, the former director of corrections yesterday told lawmakers investigating violence at Corcoran State Prison. On the second day of a special legislative hearing, former Corrections Department Director James Gomez vigorously defended his handling of an investigation of violence at the San Joaquin Valley prison. He said his intent was "100 percent to find the truth, to find the facts." "If I didn't meet that, I'm really sorry," he said. In November 1997, Gomez's department cleared itself of allegations that prison guards staged deadly fights among inmates at Corcoran. Three months later, a federal grand jury indicted eight Corcoran guards on federal civil rights charges that they staged fights in which one convict was fatally shot by a guard in 1994. Gomez, who stepped down as director in January, said the shooting was considered within department guidelines until he learned that the FBI was investigating the case. He then said initial department attempts to investigate allegations of wrongdoing were hampered by the California Correctional Peace Officers Association, the guards' politically powerful union. 'He testified yesterday that members of the union refused to cooperate with investigators. "They just refused to talk," he said. "They said, 'No, thank you.'" Gomez's remarks echoed those of Kings County District Attorney Greg Strickland, who testified Tuesday that his investigators probing allegations of inmate abuse encountered opposition from officers who refused to cooperate. Gomez also said his investigation was limited because both the FBI and state Department of Justice had warned the department to stay out of the probe. "I had no choice but to accede to the state attorney general," Gomez said. Gomez also told the committee that growth in the California system has made the department difficult to control. In 1970, California had 26,500 convicts in a dozen prisons. It now has more than 150,000 inmates in 33 prisons and 38 camps. "We've been adding 3,500 employees a year for 12 years," Gomez said. "That growth is unmanageable. It's too much for any department." Corcoran, one of the new prisons, houses some of the state's most dangerous inmates, and has been one of the most violent prisons in the nation. Members of the special legislative committee listened in rapt attention yesterday as a former Corcoran guard, Richard Caruso, testified under oath that he was harassed by his fellow staffers after he presented evidence to the FBI about shootings by guards. "They came in that office like thugs," he said. He said the prison administration placed him on guard duty in the kitchen after it was learned he was cooperating with the federal agents. "They put me in there for retaliation, I believe," Caruso said. But he added that the convicts did not attack him. "The inmates knew I ratted for their protection," he said. Caruso told how FBI agents took him to Fresno while being chased by Department of Corrections investigators who insisted he had stolen evidence from the prison. The Department of Corrections has long insisted that the chase did not take place.
------------------------------------------------------------------- When Busts Go Bad - The Heat Takes Some Heat - Well-Publicized Drug Raids Come Up Empty ('New Times' In San Luis Obispo County, California, Suggests Local Prohibition Agents Have More Zeal Than Competence) Date: Sat, 1 Aug 1998 13:29:12 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US CA: When Busts Go Bad Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Jo-D Harrison Pubdate: Thursday, July 30 - August 6, 1998 Source: New Times, SLO County's News and Entertainment Weekly Section: SLO County Scene, Front Cover: When Busts Go Bad Page: 10 Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://newtimes-slo.com/ Author: Jeff McMahon is a staffwriter at New Times. story not posted WHEN BUSTS GO BAD The Heat Takes Some Heat Well-Publicized Drug Raids Come Up Empty SLO County residents arrested during bungled narcotics raids are challenging the tactics of both of the county's narcotics squads. An Atascadero woman sued the Sheriff's Department last month because its narcotics officers blasted through the windows and doors of her home instead of raiding the neighboring address listed on their search warrant. In a second case, a San Luis Obispo man spent 16 days in jail and had his name broadcast on television and printed in newspapers as an accused methamphetamine manufacturer. The white powder narcotics officers found at his home turned out to be sodium benzoate, a common food preservative. Police and deputies defend their actions in both cases, claiming they made legitimate arrests but lost both cases on technicalities. "They thought they had the big banana," said Howard Leasure, who was arrested March 18 during a Narcotics Task Force raid on property he rented on O'Connor Way near SLO. The NTF had watched the property for at least six months. Leasure, who is Cheyenne, hosted regular spiritual gatherings at a sweat lodge on the property. The sweat lodge consisted of willow branches curved in a dome shape, covered with a tarp. A fire burned in a hearth nearby. "I noticed whenever we had sweats, they were up in the hills watching us. They had white shirts on. It was so obvious." Leasure was on his way to pick up his wife from work on March 18 when narcotics agents met him at the gate with a search warrant. They ransacked the property, collecting evidence they said pointed to methamphetamine manufacturing. "They destroyed the sweat lodge and they knew what they were destroying. They made a mess of it. They just totally desecrated it." Leasure believes agents began watching his home after a man drove up from Los Angeles to view a vintage car - a Packard - that Leasure's landlord kept on the property. Leasure believes Los Angeles NTF agents were following that man, and they reported his destination to local agents. Police records suggest a different scenario. Narcotics agents had been tracking Nickolaus Kopp, a Cambria sculptor who rented a workshop on the same property. Agents traced phone calls between Kopp and a man they had arrested at an earlier date for selling methamphetamines. Agents raided two other properties rented by Kopp on the same day, and they arrested both Kopp and Leasure on suspicion of manufacturing methamphetamines. San Luis Obispo Police Chief Jim Gardiner, then chairman of the Narcotics Task Force, hosted a press conference on the property. Agents displayed evidence including several crushed five-gallon cans the agents said once held freon, a gas used in the manufacturing process. Leasure contends those cans predated him on the property and that they represent a small portion of tons of trash that has been dumped there over the years. The cans were burnt, unlabeled, and rusty. Leasure has similar explanations for other items found by police. "There's stuff in your house that can be considered a chemical that can be used to make methamphetamine," Leasure said. The NTF's display included kitty litter, for example, which agents contend masks the odor of drug manufacturing. "Nothing's been going on here," said Leasure, who lived on the property for 11 months. "There's no lab. There may have been before I was here." NTF agents concede that individual components can be explained away but insist that together they add up to methamphetimes. "There is virtually nothing that is only used for the manufacture of methamphetamine," said Sgt. Jim English, a spokesman for the NTF. "Everything has some other purpose. However, when you take everything we found, we feel and the Department of Justice chemists feel that we have a good case for manufacturing." At the time of the arrest, NTF agents told the press that Kopp and Leasure had manufactured up to 50 pounds per month and that waste products polluted the property. "I'm native American," Leasure said, "and we don't do that." The state Department of Toxic Substances Control took soil and water samples. "All the sample results we took came back below any levels we would regulate," said Jerry White, who supervised the testing. The Regional Water Quality Control Board is continuing to look for water contamination. On July 17, the District Attorney's Office dropped the case. It withdrew charges against both men. The most dramatic evidence against Leasure - more than 10 pounds of white powder - turned out to be sodium benzoate, a preservative found in most soft drinks. Leasure said he used it to test and treat water in a mobile-home water tank. "It doesn't even remotely mean that it wasn't a meth case," Sgt. English said. "In any manufacturing case, you don't expect to find finished product. We just happened to find something that looked like it initially. It had the same color and consistency, and we thought maybe this is meth. If it had been, that would have been gravy. It would not have been instrumental to the case at all." The NTF contends it withdrew charges only because its case threatened to jeopardize a broader multiagency investigation. The district attorney can refile these charges, English said, any time within the three years stipulated by the statute of limitations. As for Leasure's sweat lodge, English said: "No comment about anything like that. I don't even know what a sweat lodge is." Sheriff Ed Williams pulled his deputies out of the Narcotics Task Force in 1997 after an undisclosed internal dispute. Detective Nick Fontecchio and Deputy David Marquez began conducting independent drug investigations for the Sheriff's Department. Those included a July 2, 1997, early morning raid on the Atascadero home occupied by Carole Ann Martin. Fontecchio, Marquez, and other officers burst through the home at 6:30 a.m., clad in assault gear and armed with assault weapons. They charged into the bedroom where Martin slept with her 3-year-old son. Martin was sleeping unclothed, and she contends the officers refused to allow her to dress or cover herself "for an appreciable length of time." "Don't believe everything you read in the complaint," said Clayton Hall, an attorney hired by SLO County to defend the deputies. "She wasn't held naked in front of the officers as she claimed. That's bunk. She was immediately turned over to a female officer and taken care of." Martin lived at 9101 San Gabriel Road. The search warrant held by the deputies listed the address of the home next door - 9105 San Gabriel. The warrant also named a different woman as the subject of the search. But Hall contends the officers targeted the right woman, and the right house, despite the wrong name and the wrong address. "The arrest was suppressed based on a faulty warrant, but it wasn't really faulty. The only thing that was faulty was that they had the wrong address, off by four digits, but they properly described the house. They hit the intended house. The one they intended to hit was the one she was residing in." Many people lived in the house, Hall said, and deputies arrived in assault gear because they expected to encounter a well-armed man who is an "enforcer" for the drug groups. The officers cited Martin for being under the influence of a controlled substance, but they did not arrest her. The allege that she confessed under questioned to using "crank" and marijuana. They took a urine sample, and Hall said it tested positive for both methamphetamine and THC, the psychoactive component of marijuana. Martin contends in her lawsuit that the officers falsified that information. The court threw out the charges against her, but Hall argues it did so based only on the wrong address, which deputies acquired from the Atascadero Planning department. "They won on a technicality on the criminal prosecution," Hall said, calling the civil lawsuit "spurious." Martin's lawsuit is not the first based on a faulty drug raid. In 1994, Dirk and Lauren Winter sued the Narcotics Task Force for raiding their Cambria home. Agents burst in at 6:30 a.m., held them at gunpoint, and, they said, handcuffed them and made disparaging remarks about them in front of their children. The agents were investigating a meth lab down the road. They had a search warrant, but it did not name the Winters. It described their home, but it included incorrect directions to get there. As in the raids on Leasure and Martin, the agents found no drugs. "We settled with them, and we got about $10,000, and we had to pay the lawyer out of that," said Lauren Winter. "We felt that they pretty much owned up to it - that they were in the wrong. It probably would have been morally right to stick it out and go to court, but it's too much of a hassle." The Winters' neighborhood has become much quieter since the settlement, Lauren Winters said. "It's been a lot better because they stopped buzzing over here with the helicopters."
------------------------------------------------------------------- War Of Words Heats Up On State's Drug Proposition ('The Arizona Daily Star' Says Proposition 300 Is Unlike Proposition 200 In 1996, Which Included Other Drug-Law Changes, And Notes A Hearing On The Lawsuit Over The Analysis Of Proposition 300 In The State Voters Pamphlet Is Scheduled Tomorrow) Date: Fri, 31 Jul 1998 11:23:12 -0400 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US AZ: War Of Words Heats Up On State's Drug Proposition Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: email@example.com (Frank S. World) Source: Arizona Daily Star Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.azstarnet.com/ Pubdate: Thursday, 30 July 1998 WAR OF WORDS HEATS UP ON STATE'S DRUG PROPOSITION PHOENIX (AP) - Supporters of a medical marijuana initiative adopted two years ago accuse state officials of trying to mislead voters in an upcoming referendum. Defending the wording approved for the about-to-be-printed official voter publicity pamphlet, one legislative leader said initiative supporters are ``trying to have us accept their spin as the official spin.'' The initiative, Proposition 200 on the 1996 ballot, would authorize physicians to prescribe otherwise illegal drugs such as marijuana. However, the Legislature in 1997 promptly amended the voter-passed law to, instead, bar medical use of the drugs without federal authorization. Federal officials have said such authorization won't be forthcoming. Initiative supporters, who have bankrolled similar ballot measures in several other states, responded to the 1997 law by collecting enough signatures to force a referendum drive this year on the 1997 law adopted by the Legislature. The referendum is Proposition 300 on the state's Nov. 3 general election ballot. The 1996 ballot measure also included other drug-law changes, but those are not included in the current dispute. Two lawsuits filed last week by initiative supporters assert that wording drafted by state officials for the official voter publicity pamphlet and the ballot itself is inaccurate or unfair. The lawsuits asked for court orders blocking the state-drafted wording from being used. A legislative housekeeping committee agreed yesterday to make many changes in the wording of the pamphlet's analysis of Proposition 300, but refused to delete its partial list of affected drugs. Those listed were heroin, LSD, marijuana and variations of PCP. Selecting only ``those few that are most likely to inflame the senses of some voters'' from among the more than 100 affected drugs was an attempt by the initiative's opponents to garner votes for Proposition 300, one of the lawsuits argued. ``That sows a level of confusion,'' said Jack LaSota, a lobbyist for the initiative supporters. He suggested referring to the drugs involved as ``otherwise illegal drugs'' or ``otherwise illegal substances.'' Legislators balked, saying they have a constitutional duty to provide clear explanations of ballot measures and that voters would not understand that more than marijuana is involved. ``They would not have the foggiest idea what that means,'' said Sen. Tom Patterson, a Phoenix Republican who is a physician. ``They're trying to have us accept their spin as the official spin, as the all-inclusive spin,'' said Senate Majority Whip Gary Richardson, R-Tempe. A hearing on the lawsuit on the pamphlet's analysis was scheduled tomorrow in Maricopa County Superior Court.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Group Fights Listing Of Drugs ('The Arizona Republic' Version) Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 10:55:47 -0800 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US AZ: Group Fights Listing Of Drugs Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: email@example.com (Frank S. World) Pubdate: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 Source: The Arizona Republic Contact: Opinions@pni.com Website: http://www.azcentral.com/indexmain.html Author: Mike McCloy GROUP FIGHTS LISTING OF DRUGS Arizona lawmakers on Wednesday refused to remove references to heroin, LSD and PCP from their official description of a referendum on legalizing marijuana. A medical-marijuana group is going to court Friday to have the words edited out of the publicity pamphlet for the Nov. 3 general election. The Legislative Council's description for voters says that Proposition 300 would limit a 1996 initiative by Arizonans for Drug Policy Reform that legalizes not only marijuana but LSD, heroin, PCP and other Schedule One drugs. Lawmakers amended the 1996 initiative last year with House Bill 2518, which blocked legalization of any street drugs in Arizona unless Congress approves marijuana for medical use. Renaming themselves The People Have Spoken, pot proponents gathered signatures again this year to reverse the Legislature's changes in their initiative by referring HB 2518 to the ballot. The People Have Spoken said that lawmakers were wrong in tampering with a law passed by the voters and were unfair early this month in writing their official description of the referendum. The publicity pamphlet is scheduled to be printed Tuesday by the Secretary of State's Office. The Legislative Council's official description of the initiative in 1996 did not mention LSD, heroin, PCP (a psychedelic drug) or Schedule One drugs other than marijuana, said lawyer Jack LaSota. So, he said, these words should not be used to describe the referendum. Voting 9-0, the Legislative Council kept the references to LSD and heroin but changed the official description of the referendum to include "certain analogues of PCP." Some chemical variations of PCP are listed in federal schedules of illegal drugs. Sam Vagenas, spokesman for The People Have Spoken, said the group will ask Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Joseph Howe to delete hard drugs from the ballot description.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Luther Drug Bust Nets Teacher, Wife ('The Oklahoman' Says Police In Luther, Oklahoma, Busted The Owner Of A Home Day-Care Center And Her Husband, A Teacher, Wednesday For Possession And Cultivation Of Marijuana - The Couple Were Still In Jail Wednesday Evening, But There's No Word On What Authorities Did To Their Three Children) From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: "MN" (email@example.com) Subject: MN: US: OK: Luther Drug Bust Nets Teacher, Wife Date: Tue, 4 Aug 1998 18:36:11 -0500 Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Michael Pearson (firstname.lastname@example.org) Pubdate: 7/30/98 Source: Oklahoman, The (OK) Contact: http://www.oklahoman.com/?ed-writeus Website: http://www.oklahoman.com/ Author: Melissa Nelson Luther Drug Bust Nets Teacher, Wife LUTHER -- The owner of a home day-care center and her husband, a Luther teacher, were arrested Wednesday on complaints of possession of marijuana. Lynn Michelle Steffens, 37, and Eddie Lee Steffens Jr., 32, remained in the Oklahoma County jail Wednesday evening. They were arrested on complaints of possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia. Eddie Lee Steffens, an agriculture teacher with the Luther School District, also was arrested on a complaint of cultivation of marijuana, said Mark Woodward, spokesman for the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs Control. Agents from the bureau searched the couple's home and day-care center at 2655 NE 178 in Luther on Wednesday morning after aerial surveillance found about 40 marijuana plants in the back yard, Woodward said. Woodward said agents found four marijuana plants in a barn on the property and a small amount of marijuana in the home. A loaded shotgun was found in a bedroom, he said. Plants in the back yard were likely removed before agents arrived, he said. Five children, including the couple's three children, were at the home day-care center when the arrests were made, Woodward said.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Watts' Kin Gets Term Suspended ('The Associated Press' Says The Sister Of US Representative JC Watts, A Republican From Oklahoma, Pleaded Guilty To Six Charges Apparently Involving Possession And Distribution Of Marijuana, Methamphetamine, Drug Paraphernalia And Maintaining A House Where Drugs Were Kept, And Has Been Given A Seven-Year Suspended Sentence After Successfully Completing A Boot Camp Program For Non-Violent Offenders) Date: Mon, 3 Aug 1998 18:28:25 -0500 To: "DRCTalk Reformers' Forum" (email@example.com) From: firstname.lastname@example.org (A H Clements) Subject: Re: more barbarism in Oklahoma Reply-To: email@example.com Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Hey hey talkers, I don't know about y'all, but it infurates me when I think of this politicaly connected meth distributor getting a suspended sentence while medicinal cannabis user Will Foster gets 93 years in the same state (Oklahoma). take care --- peace --- ashley in atlanta PS: I pray there is a "special" hell for drug-warriors. If so, Oklahoma shall be well represented. *** Newshawk: email@example.com (Frank S. World) Source: Associated Press Pubdate: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 WATTS' KIN GETS TERM SUSPENDED OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- The sister of U.S. Rep. J.C. Watts, R-Okla., has been given a seven-year suspended sentence after successfully completing a boot camp program for non-violent offenders. Darlene Watts, 34, was charged a year ago with possession and distribution of marijuana, methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia. She also was charged with maintaining a house where drugs were kept. She pleaded guilty four months ago to six drug-related counts. Defense attorney Irven Box said Ms. Watts elected to remain in jail instead of making bond last year. "Drugs were controlling her life, and she felt she was better off in jail," he said. As part of the probation, Ms. Watts must continue in an aftercare program and be tested for drugs.
------------------------------------------------------------------- FBI Arrests More Texas Jailers Accused Of Abuse ('The Associated Press' Says Three More Current And Former Guards Have Been Charged In A Videotaped Shakedown Of Missouri Inmates Contracted Out To The Brazoria County Jail South Of Houston) From: "W.H.E.N. - Bob Owen - Olympia" (firstname.lastname@example.org) To: "-News" (email@example.com) Subject: FBI arrests abusive Texas jailers Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 20:30:06 -0700 Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org FBI arrests more Texas jailers accused of abuse By Mark Babineck Associated Press 07/30/98 03:43 HOUSTON (AP) - Three more current and former jailers have been charged in a videotaped shakedown of Missouri inmates at the Brazoria County jail. Former Sheriff's Lt. Lester Arnold, 47; former deputy David Cisneros, 38; and current jailer Robert Percival, 36, were arrested Wednesday. The men, along with former Capital Correctional Resources Inc. officer Wilton Wallace, 51, are charged with aiding and abetting the assault of Toby Hawthorne, a Brazoria County Detention Center inmate. Hawthorne was kicked, shocked with a stun gun and bitten by a police dog during a 30-minute incident recorded Sept. 18, 1996, during the making of a training tape uncovered last summer by The Facts, a daily newspaper in Brazoria County, south of Houston. Arnold also is charged with shocking two other prisoners. Missouri Gov. Mel Carnahan was pleased to learn of the indictments. "We were promised this would be taken seriously. I applaud the authorities for going forward with the indictments," Carnahan said in Jefferson City, Mo. CCRI vice president Jim Brewer did not a phone message left Wednesday by The Associated Press. But Sheriff Joe King hinted that he doesn't believe the indictments are justified. "You can't print in a public paper what my opinion is of those indictments," King said. "I won't publicly express what I feel." Cisneros, Percival and Wallace each could get 10 years in prison if convicted. Arnold faces 30 years. Wallace faces an additional 10 years if convicted in a separate, untaped attack on another inmate. Cisneros and Percival were released on bond. Arnold's status after his arrest was unclear. Wallace, who was initially arrested in June, was not rearrested Wednesday. The inmates were housed at the jail in Angleton, about 45 miles south of Houston, through a contract with Groesbeck, Texas-based Capital Correctional Resources Inc., a private prison company. After The Facts exposed the videotape, Missouri canceled its contract, 215 remaining inmates were returned and Wallace and other CCRI staffers were laid off. About 500 have inmates filed a federal lawsuit against CCRI, alleging their civil rights were violated in company facilities in Brazoria, Limestone and Gregg counties.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Missing Cocaine A Mystery ('The Houston Chronicle' Says Police In Montgomery County, Texas, Have No Explanation For How Almost 20 Pounds Of Cocaine Valued At Up To $3 Million Disappeared Last Year From Their Evidence Room) Date: Fri, 31 Jul 1998 11:19:45 -0400 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US TX: Missing Cocaine A Mystery Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: email@example.com Source: Houston Chronicle (TX) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.chron.com/ Pubdate: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 Author: Paul McKay MISSING COCAINE A MYSTERY 20 pounds disappears from evidence room NEW CANEY -- Montgomery County authorities remain at a loss to explain how almost 20 pounds of cocaine disappeared last year from the evidence room of a constable who testified before a grand jury this week. Precinct 4 Constable Travis Bishop and four employees from his New Caney-based department testified Tuesday in what District Attorney Mike McDougal described as an informal probe that targeted no suspects. "We took testimony, but it wasn't really a situation where we were going to indict or nobill anybody," McDougal said. "I just wanted to get some people under oath and get their testimony on the record in case something develops in the future. But right now, nobody has any idea how this stuff disappeared." Bishop notified the Texas Rangers late last year after two of his employees discovered that the cocaine was gone. Most of the missing contraband already had been used as evidence in trials and was going to be destroyed, McDougal said. He said only Bishop and one deputy had keys to the evidence room, although any number of other people could have found a way to get in. "I wouldn't call it the most secure place, but it seemed adequately secure to me," McDougal said. "Supposedly, the lock could be picked without a whole lot of effort." While estimates on the street value of drugs vary widely, McDougal said the cocaine could have been sold for up to $3 million. Bishop said Wednesday he is developing policies and measures to tighten security. He noted that his offices are part of an annex housing several other county agencies. "There are all kinds of people milling around all the time," Bishop said. "The justice of the peace has people working off traffic tickets around here. For somebody to have gotten into our property room without forced entry, it had to be somebody who knew our routine. If somebody wants to get in and get something bad enough, they'll find a way to do it."
------------------------------------------------------------------- Juvenile Drug Cases Increasing (A Letter To The Editor Of 'The Altoona Herald-Mitchellville Index' In Iowa From The Altoona Police Chief Says Statistics Recently Released By The US Department Of Justice Reveal That 1995 Juvenile Drug Offense Cases Jumped 145 Percent From Those Reported In 1991 - But Doesn't Mention How Much Funding Increased During The Same Period To Round Up Such Suspects) Date: Mon, 17 Aug 1998 21:39:34 -0400 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US IA: LTE: Juvenile Drug Cases Increasing Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Carl Olsen Source: Altoona Herald / Mitchellville Index (IA) Pubdate: 30 Jul 98 Author: John Gray The Altoona Herald - Mitchellville Index Thursday, July 30, 1998, Page 6A Post Office Box 427 Altoona, Iowa 50009 Phone 515-967-4224 Fax 515-967-0553 JUVENILE DRUG CASES INCREASING To the editor: Information recently released by the U.S. Department of Justice reveals that 1995 juvenile drug offense cases jumped 145 percent from those reported in 1991. Drug offenses include possession or sale of marijuana, cocaine and other illegal drugs. Although juvenile courts nationwide saw a decline in their drug offense caseloads from 1988 to 1991, a sharp increase was noted from 1991 to 1995, the last year of the reporting period. Males accounted for the vast majority of drug cases prosecuted in juvenile court. Between 1986 and 1995, the male portion of the drug caseload ranged from 83 percent to 88 percent. In 1986, white males accounted for 53 percent of such cases; black males for 31 percent. With all cases considered, 58 percent of the drug caseload in 1995 involved male juveniles age 16 or older. President Clinton recently announced a new assault against the illegal use of drugs. Millions of dollars will be spent on a media campaign, trying to change America's ambivalence toward "casual" drug use. Complaints have been heard about wasting tax dollars on what is essentially a public relations blitz. We should remember, however, the highly successful inroads made with a concentrated PR effort against drunk drivers. The very idea of a designated driver would have been laughable in the '70s. It is an accepted and valued norm today. Public opinion was swayed after a long and effective campaign. The drunk driver, edging his way home on the side of the road, is no longer topical humor. At the risk of inflaming the passions of those who advocate drug legalization, it's about time that we start using all of the tools available to change the way people look at drug abuse: the media; the power of advertising; the Office of the President. It's time to advertise that cigarettes and marijuana are gateways to the abuse of other drugs. Our youngest citizens are most at risk when movie and television stars, talk show hosts and even parents downplay the dangers of illicit drug use. Right now, comedians are trashing the government's new ad campaign against marijuana, cocaine and heroin. No one makes a joke about people who die from a grinding, heart-wrenching, alcohol-induced traffic accident. Why is death-by-drugs still funny? Because the public acceptance has yet to be effectively challenged. The government's use of media influence can only help change things for the better. John L. Gray Chief of police Altoona
------------------------------------------------------------------- Lawyer Convicted Of Marijuana Charges ('The Associated Press' Says A Federal Jury In Springfield, Massachusetts, Found 68-Year-Old New York City Lawyer Herbert Derman Guilty Of Conspiracy In A Large Marijuana Growing Operation In The Berkshires, And Decided He Should Also Forfeit His North Egremont Farm Because Marijuana Was Found There, Even Though He Was Acquitted Of Intent To Distribute) From: "W.H.E.N. - Bob Owen - Olympia" (email@example.com) To: "-News" (firstname.lastname@example.org) Subject: MA Lawyer convicted of marijuana charges Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 20:31:13 -0700 Sender: email@example.com Lawyer convicted of marijuana charges Associated Press, 07/30/98 09:12 SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (AP) - A 68-year-old New York City lawyer has been convicted of conspiracy in a massive underground marijuana growing operation in the Berkshires. A federal jury deliberated over two days before convicting Herbert Derman on the conspiracy charge Wednesday, and deciding he should forfeit his North Egremont farm to the government because it was used in the drug operation. The jury acquitted Derman of additional charges of money laundering and possession of marijuana with intent to distribute. Derman's lawyer said he would appeal. Prosecutors said Derman helped run the multi-million dollar marijuana growing business based at the Sandisfield farm of one of his clients, Marcel Rosenzweig. More than 5,000 plants and $1 million in cash and gold were seized at Rosenzweig's farm in 1995. Marijuana was also found on Derman's farm. Rosenzweig, 60, died of cancer last year before his case came to trial. Eleven others charged in connection with the case have pleaded guilty. U.S. District Court Judge Michael A. Ponsor ordered Derman held until sentencing Oct. 28.
------------------------------------------------------------------- New York City Lawyer Found Guilty In Largest Marijuana Cultivation Operation Ever In New England (The 'Business Wire' Version Notes Derman Faces A Mandatory Minimum 10-Year Sentence) Date: Fri, 31 Jul 1998 03:42:33 -0400 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US MA: Wire: NYC Lawyer Found Guilty In Largest Marijuana Cultivation Operation Ever In New England Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Patrick Henry (firstname.lastname@example.org) Pubdate: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 Source: Business Wire Authors: Amy Rindskopf, Samantha Martin NEW YORK CITY LAWYER FOUND GUILTY IN LARGEST MARIJUANA CULTIVATION OPERATION EVER IN NEW ENGLAND SPRINGFIELD, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-A New York City lawyer was found guilty by a jury late yesterday in connection with the largest and longest running indoor marijuana growing operation ever in New England. Donald K. Stern, United States Attorney for the District of Massachusetts, George Festa, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration in New England, and Michael Lahey, Acting Chief of the Criminal Investigative Division of the Internal Revenue Service, announced that Herbert B. Derman, age 67, a lawyer from New York City, and North Egremont, Massachusetts, was found guilty after a three week jury trial of conspiracy to cultivate more than 1,000 marijuana plants. The jury also found that Derman's residence and 200 acres of real property in North Egremont, MA, is to be forfeited to the United States. U.S. Attorney Stern stated: "This case involved the largest and longest running indoor marijuana growing operation in the history of New England. Herbert Derman allowed his rural North Egremont, MA, land to be used to operate a vast underground marijuana growing operation for over seven years." According to evidence introduced at the trial, Derman conspired with Marcel Rosenzweig, Richard Haber, Nicholas Pinto Edward Brennan, Marjorie Brennan, Sabrina Brennan and others to grow over two hundred thousand marijuana plants, first inside a huge underground bunker of Derman's property in North Egremont, MA, from 1983 to 1991, and then inside a barn on Rosenzweig's property in Sandisfield, MA, from 1992 to 1995. During two court authorized searches of Rosenzweig's property in August, 1995, the Drug Enforcement Administration seized over 5,000 marijuana plants and over $1 million in cash and gold. The jury acquitted Derman on related money laundering charges. Since the indictment was first returned in the fall of 1995, Rosenzweig died of natural causes, and eleven co-conspirators pled guilty to charges related to the marijuana growing conspiracy. U.S. District Court Judge Michael A. Ponsor scheduled Derman's sentencing for October 28, 1998. Derman faces a maximum sentence of life imprisonment with a minimum mandatory term of 10 years. The investigation was conducted by the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Western Massachusetts Narcotics Task Force and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Ariane D. Vuono and Kevin O'Regan in Stern's Springfield office.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Despite No Memory Of Crimes, Cop Admits Seven Bank Robberies ('The Associated Press' Says Trenton, New Jersey Police Officer Christopher Kerins, An Undercover Narcotics Officer, Pleaded Guilty Wednesday To The Robberies, And Also Awaits Sentencing In Ohio, Where He Pleaded Guilty In 1996 To Robbery And Drug Charges) From: "W.H.E.N. - Bob Owen - Olympia" (email@example.com) To: "-News" (firstname.lastname@example.org) Subject: Heroin made cop into bank robber Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 20:29:24 -0700 Sender: email@example.com Despite no memory of crimes, cop admits seven bank robberies By Jeffrey Gold, Associated Press, 07/30/98 07:29 NEWARK, N.J. (AP) - He doesn't remember pulling on the ski mask or the latex gloves, or brandishing his police-issue semiautomatic .40-caliber Glock pistol at frightened bank workers. Still, Trenton Police Officer Christopher Kerins believes he is the "camouflage bandit" who committed seven bank robberies. Kerins, an undercover narcotics officer, pleaded guilty Wednesday to the robberies, telling a federal judge that bank photographs and other evidence convinced him he was the criminal. The spree at five different banks netted nearly $50,000 from November 1995 to April 1996. Bank photographs described in court showed Kerins, who joined the police force in 1985, always wore a full-face ski mask and latex gloves, and carried his service pistol. Kerins also conceded that the camouflage jacket found at his house matched the jacket worn during the robberies. Defense lawyer Robert J. Fettweis thinks Kerins became addicted to heroin to escape nightmares and hallucinations that haunted him since 1989, when he shot to death a man who attacked him with a butcher knife. His lawyers considered presenting an insanity defense, but concluded that, while Kerins suffered from post-traumatic stress syndrome, he didn't meet the stringent legal definition of insanity, Fettweis said. Kerins, 41, faces about 10 to 12 years in federal prison without parole when he is sentenced Oct. 26. Kerins is suspended without pay from the Trenton force and will likely be dismissed after sentencing. He also awaits sentencing in Ohio, where he pleaded guilty in 1996 to robbery and drug charges, and could get more than 60 years in prison. He has been in custody since his arrest in April 1996 while attending a law enforcement conference in Cincinnati. Authorities there said they found heroin in Kerins' luggage after he robbed a suburban Cincinnati bank and led police on a six-mile chase before his tires were shot out by an officer he tried to run down.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Medical Marijuana - Suit Filed Against Marijuana Laws ('The Associated Press' Breaks The Media Silence About The Class Action Lawsuit Filed By Public Interest Attorney Lawrence Elliott Hirsch In Philadelphia, Demanding That Laws Prohibiting The Medical Use Of Marijuana Be Struck Down As Unconstitutional) Date: Fri, 31 Jul 1998 12:14:45 -0400 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: US PA: WIRE: Medical Marijuana, Suit filed against marijuana laws Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Patrick Rumsey (firstname.lastname@example.org) Source: Associated Press Pubdate: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 MEDICAL MARIJUANA, SUIT FILED AGAINST MARIJUANA LAWS PHILADELPHIA (AP) - One is a 21 year cancer survivor and an AIDS patient whose body is wasting away from lack of appetite. The other suffers from the "ice pick" pain of multiple sclerosis. The remaining 163 plaintiffs in a class-action lawsuit represent every other imaginable argument for overturning the federal governments 61 year stance on marijuana. Their suit, filed this month in Philadelphia, seeks to end the nation's ban on the medical and therapeutic use of cannabis. Lawrence Elliott Hirsch, the chief counsel of the Philadelphia-based Hirsch & Caplan Public Interest Law Firm, is asking a U.S. District Court judge to declare the marijuana laws unconstitutional. He says his lawsuit represents the millions of people who need to use marijuana to survive the symptoms and treatments of a variety of diseases, These people, the suit says, ought to be "free to use it for their health without control or interference" by the government Cancer chemotherapy, AIDS wasting syndrome and nervous disorders are among scores of afflictions that can be treated successfully only by smoking the natural plant, according to the suit, which seeks class action on behalf of 165 plaintiffs _ and perhaps many more. The suit was assigned to U.S. District Judge Marvin Katz A spokeswoman at the Department of Justice's Civil Litigation Division said she could not comment on the suit Monday The government's 1937 classification of marijuana as a dangerous narcotic was the result of political and moral forces seeking to take away constitutionally guaranteed liberties, the suit contends. Hirsch says marijuana laws are akin to prohibition, "only without a constitutional amendment." "Cannabis was freely and legally available in the United States for a wide range of medicinal uses until the federal politicians desecrated, demonized, defamed, prohibited and criminalized what many cultures considered to be an invaluable resources," Hirsch wrote. "The government's arbitrary, hypocritical classification of cannabis as the most dangerous drug in America continues to be the law and policy of the United States of America, criminalizing the sick and powerless." Kiyoshi Kuromiya, 55, a Philadelphia AIDS activist and one of the lead plaintiffs, was diagnosed with AIDS 10 years ago. He said smoking marijuana is the only way he can maintain an appetite "There's a very powerful correlation between weight loss and the disease's progression, and survival," he said. "I can sit down to a meal and be able to eat maybe one bite, or not be able to look at the food. Marijuana is very effective Within a matter of a few minutes (after smoking) I can eat a whole meal. Through the use of marijuana _ it's taken some time _ but I've been able to regain a lot of the weight," he said. Aside from chemotherapy and radiation therapy, Hirsch said marijuana has been shown to be effective in the treatment of dozens of physical and psychological maladies. They include ALS, or Lou Gehrig's disease, arthritis, multiple sclerosis, tuberculosis, menstrual cramps, migraine headaches and muscle spasticity related to central nervous system disorders. Hirsch and Kuromiya point out that a pharmaceutical called Marinol, which consists almost in its entirety of delta-9 tetrahydrocannibinol (THC) - the main psychoactive and medicinal compound in marijuana has limited effectiveness. Marinol is made under license from the government by Unimed Pharmaceuticals and is available only by prescription. Because it comes in a pill form, it is often no help to patients who are unable to take medication orally, including many chemotherapy patients who develop mouth sores, they said. They also say the cost of the drug is often prohibitive. "When you're getting nauseated and you're about to vomit, you don't want to swallow a pill, "said Kuromiya, who began the first Philadelphia-based marijuana buyers' club in 1993 But it's the government's hypocrisy over the use of THC, Hirsch said, that is also frustrating. He questions why the government would allow synthetic drugs with THC and not allow it in its natural form. "To me the constitutional rights are obvious We're not a political firm. We're a public interest law firm. This doesn't have a thing to do with politics. It has to do with constitutional rights and public rights," Hirsch said.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Cannabis A Minor Risk To Mentally Unstable - Doctor ('The New Zealand Herald' Says Several Physicians And Public Health Officials Testified Yesterday Before The Parliamentary Committee Holding An Inquiry Into The Mental Health Effects Of Cannabis That Cannabis Use Causes No Significant Harm, And At Worst Could Worsen The Condition Of Some Schizophrenics, About One In 10,000 Of The Population - Though Cannabis Did Not Cause Schizophrenia And Led To Fewer Problems Than Tobacco And Alcohol - Research Has Not Shown That Cannabis Use Damages The Brain Structure, And It Is Well Accepted For Stress Relief And Other Therapeutic Uses)Date: Fri, 31 Jul 1998 03:48:35 -0400 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: New Zealand: Cannabis A Minor Risk To Mentally Unstable: Doctor Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: David.Hadorn@vuw.ac.nz (David Hadorn) Pubdate: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 Source: NZ Herald (Auckland) Contact: email@example.com CANNABIS A MINOR RISK TO MENTALLY UNSTABLE: DOCTOR WELLINGTON - Cannabis use has little effect on mental illness, apart from a small group of people suffering from schizophrenia or predisposed to the disease, MPs were told yesterday. Dr John Marks, who heads Capital Cost Health's drug and alcohol unit, told the health select committee that cannabis use caused no significant harm. The committee is holding an inquiry into the mental health effects of cannabis and will report to Parliament and make recommendations to the Government. Dr Marks, a member of the Drug Policy Forum Trust, a doctors' group that supports decriminalising the drug, said cannabis use could worsen the condition of some schizophrenics - about one in 10,000 of the population. Dr Nick Judson, the Ministry of Health's deputy director of mental health, said cannabis caused fewer problems than tobacco and alcohol. People who used cannabis occasionally had few health problems. Long-term and heavier users could suffer subtle cognitive impairment. Research had not shown that cannabis use damaged the brain structure, he said. But in high doses it could cause acute psychosis. Cannabis did not cause schizophrenia, but it might trigger the illness in people at risk, said Dr Judson. No more than 3 per cent of the population was at serious risk. He said research showed cannabis could be therapeutic, particularly for pain and stress relief. The select committee announced its inquiry in April amid calls for the drug to be decriminalised. The inquiry will look at the effect of cannabis on people's development, the role of the drug as a trigger for mental illness, the effects of cannabis on Maori mental health, and the adequacy of services for those with drug-related mental illnesses. Ria Earp, the ministry's deputy director of Maori health, said more research was needed on the effects of cannabis on Maori mental health. More appropriate drug and alcohol services were needed for Maori. The committee was told that about 10 per cent of cannabis users had a dependency problem which was a similar level to other drugs but much less than tobacco. Dr Hadorn, who heads the doctors' trust, said the pharmacological effects of cannabis were relatively benign. It had been used for centuries and was well accepted for stress relief. He said it was important to consider the research, rather than be distracted by anecdotal evidence about the small number of people who had problems. "The research evidence shows that cannabis is at most a small contributor to the development and exacerbation of mental illness throughout the world." People who dealt only with those who had problems with cannabis - such as police and health workers - had a very narrow view, he said. A trust member, Dr Peter Crampton, of the Wellington School of Medicine, said the criminal status of cannabis made the mental health consequences worse. Cannabis use had decreased or remained the same in countries or states where its use had been decriminalised. Dr Hadorn said anti-drug campaigns aimed at children increased drug use because they stimulated curiosity. Children needed to be told at a young age they should not smoke cannabis. Dr Marks said studies of cannabis, dating back to last century, had all exonerated the drug. It was therapeutic for diseases such as glaucoma, multiple sclerosis, cancer and HIV. - NZPA
------------------------------------------------------------------- Cannabis Effect On Mental Illness Slight - Doctor (A Slightly Different Version In The New Zealand 'Evening Post') Date: Fri, 31 Jul 1998 12:19:43 -0400 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: New Zealand: Cannabis effect on mental illness slight -- doctor Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: David.Hadorn@vuw.ac.nz (David Hadorn) Source: Evening Post (New Zealand) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.evpost.co.nz/ Pubdate: July 30, 1998 CANNABIS EFFECT ON MENTAL ILLNESS SLIGHT -- DOCTOR Cannabis use has little effect on mental illness apart from a small group of people suffering from schizophrenia or predisposed to it, a parliamentary select committee was told yesterday. Dr John Marks, who heads Capital Coast Health's drug and alcohol unit [sic; he heads CCH's dual diagnosis unit], told the health select committee that cannabis use caused no significant harm. The committee is holding an inquiry into the mental health effects of cannabis. Dr Marks, a member of the Drug Policy Forum Trust, a doctors' group that supports decriminalising the drug, said cannabis use could aggravate the condition of some people with schizophrenia -- about one in 10,000. Dr Nick Judson, the Ministry of Health's deputy director of mental health, said cannabis caused fewer problems than tobacco and alcohol. People who occasionally used cannabis had few health problems. Long-term and heavier users could suffer subtle cognitive impairment. Research had not shown that cannabis use damaged the brain structure, he said. But in high doses it could cause acute psychosis. Cannabis did not cause schizophrenia, but it might trigger the illness in people at risk. No more than 2 or 3 percent of the population was at serious risk, he said. Dr Judson said research showed cannabis could have a useful therapeutic effect, particularly for pain and stress relief. The select committee will look at the effect of cannabis on people's development, the role of cannabis as a trigger for mental illness, the effects of cannabis on Maori mental health and the adequacy of services for those with drug-related mental illnesses. The committee was told that about 10 percent of cannabis users had a dependency problem, which was a similar level to those on other drugs but much less than tobacco users. Dr Mark [sic] David Hadorn, who heads the Drug Policy forum Trust, said the pharmacological effects of cannabis were relatively benign. He said it was important to consider the research and not get distracted by anecdotal evidence about the small number of people who had problems. "The research evidence shows that cannabis is at most a small contributor to the development and exacerbation of mental illness throughout the world." Dr Hadorn said anti-drug campaigns aimed at children increased drug use because they stimulated curiosity. Trust member Dr Peter Crampton, from Wellington School of Medicine, said the criminal status of cannabis made the mental health consequences worse. Cannabis use had decreased or remained the same in countries or states where its use had been decriminalised. - NZPA
------------------------------------------------------------------- Cannabis Use Not A Serious Risk To Health Says Ministry ('The Dominion' Version) Date: Fri, 31 Jul 1998 12:18:38 -0400 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: New Zealand: Cannabis use not a serious risk to health says ministry Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: David.Hadorn@vuw.ac.nz (David Hadorn) Source: The Dominion (New Zealand) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.inl.co.nz/wnl/dominion/index.html Author: Helen Bain CANNABIS USE NOT A SERIOUS RISK TO HEALTH SAYS MINISTRY Cannabis does not pose a big health risk, the Health Ministry yesterday told a select committee inquiry into the mental health effects of the drug. The ministry's submission to Parliament's health select committee says most New Zealanders who used cannabis used it only occasionally, and reported few health problems. "Overall, the current public health risks of cannabis use are small to moderate in size, and are less than the public health risk of tobacco or alcohol use," the ministry's submission says. Studies had failed to demonstrate any evidence that even acute cannabis use caused brain damage, and suggested that even long-term heavy cannabis use caused only subtle impairment of cognition, the submission says. High doses could produce short-term psychosis, and could exacerbate schizophrenia in those already affected by the condition, and about 10 per cent of users were dependent on cannabis, the ministry said. "Beyond that it is difficult to draw any sort of definitive cause-and-effect relationship between cannabis and mental illness." Deputy director of mental health Nick Judson said no more than 2 to 3 per cent of the population were at serious risk from cannabis. The ministry also acknowledged that in many parts of New Zealand mental health and drug and alcohol services had not been well coordinated, so failed to meet the needs of many with mental health and substance abuse problems. Drug Policy Forum Trust director David Hadorn said that research had largely exonerated cannabis as a cause of mental illness. The mental health of New Zealanders was put at greater risk by criminalisation of cannabis than cannabis itself, he said. "Creating a climate of criminality around cannabis ensures that the relatively few people who develop problems are less likely to seek help. This sets off a spiral of alienation, marginalisation and anti-social behaviour, which too often can culminate in criminality, mental illness and violence." "By driving cannabis use underground, we surely make the situation far worse than would be the case under a controlled, regulated system of cannabis distribution. Creating a flourishing black market for a widely used substance inevitably fosters criminal activity." Dr Hadorn said the only drug proven to contribute to violence was alcohol, and cannabis had the opposite effect. "It tends to encourage people to stay home and watch Cheech and Chong movies and listen to Pink Floyd." "Honest" education programmes were needed to reduce cannabis use by young people, but the "hyperbole approach" used by New Zealand police just encouraged young people to experiment, Dr Hadorn said. Assistant police commissioner Ian Holyoake said police opposed legalisation of cannabis, but were "not blind to the issues raised by the legalisation lobby". But till there were better programmes to reduce the harm caused by cannabis, its illegal status "remained a powerful tool", Mr Holyoake said. "Police take the view that cannabis is an inherently harmful drug with serious health risk to regular and long-term users, especially the young," he said. Mr Holyoake admitted police had had limited success in reducing cannabis offending, and had failed to halt involvement of gangs in cannabis cultivation and distribution. He said cannabis had a huge impact on Maori communities, especially in Northland, Bay of Plenty and Poverty Bay. "Police working in these communities speak of a dead generation or two, and of young people losing touch with their elders and their families. Their focus in life is cannabis -- growing, smoking and the culture -- rendering them blind to life's opportunities.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Drug Has 'Calming Influence' ('The New Zealand Herald' Says Detective Superintendent Harry Quinn Told A Parliamentary Select Committee Inquiry Into Cannabis Yesterday In Wellington That 'We Don't Have Any Definitive Evidence That Says That Cannabis Use Is In Itself A Violent Behaviour - And I Think Our Evidence Would Be That It Has A Calming Influence In Some Respects' - He Said It Was The Violent Criminal Activity Surrounding Cannabis Dealing That Was Of Concern) Date: Fri, 31 Jul 1998 03:46:38 -0400 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: New Zealand: Drug Has 'Calming Influence' Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: David.Hadorn@vuw.ac.nz (David Hadorn) Pubdate: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 Source: NZ Herald (Auckland) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org DRUG HAS 'CALMING INFLUENCE' WELLINGTON - Police acknowledged yesterday that they had not strong evidence to back claims that cannabis made people violent. But they said they were concerned at the violence surrounding cannabis dealing. Assistant Commissioner Ian Holyoake told a parliamentary select committee inquiry into cannabis that police did not support decriminalisation. Mr Holyoake was asked if, as with alcohol, cannabis made people violent. "Yes. Cannabis, from our practical experience, seems to make people violent," he told the health select committee, adding that it was difficult to measure. Detective Superintendent Harry Quinn told the committee that statistics showed cannabis was a "factor" in a "large number" of homicides each year. However, when pressed by MPs he acknowledged that all this meant was that either the victim or the offender had used the drug, or that violence had occurred as a result of a cannabis drug deal gone wrong. Mr Quinn, in an apparent contradiction of Mr Holyoake's statement that cannabis made people violent, said it had a "calming influence." "We don't have any definitive evidence that says that cannabis use is in itself a violent behaviour - and I think our evidence would be that it has a calming influence in some respects on those who use it." He said it was the violent criminal activity surrounding cannabis dealing that was of concern. - NZPA
------------------------------------------------------------------- Public Meeting August 24 - Future Of South Australia's Hemp Laws (A Local Correspondent Describes The Meeting In Adelaide In The Context Of The Relatively Progressive Policies Recommended By The Sackville Royal Commission, Set Up By The South Australian Labor Government In 1976) Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 17:04:48 +0930 From: dave sag (email@example.com) Subject: public meeting August 24 - future of SA's Hemp Laws To: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Where: The Atrium: Level 2, 187 Rundle St Adelaide (next to the SA Writer's Centre) When: 7.30 pm Monday August 24 THE FUTURE OF SOUTH AUSTRALIA'S CANNABIS LAWS Cannabis is the most widely used illicit drug in Australia. Over 41% of Australians over 14 have tried cannabis and 13% are regular users. Since 1964, cannabis has been the drug of choice of young Australians, and among 18 - 24 year olds, over 50% use cannabis regularly. To begin with, Australian law followed the US War on Drugs zero-tolerance model, though in 1986 South Australia became the first state to break with this model. In 1976 the South Australian Labor Government set up a Royal Commission into the Non-Medical Use of Drugs. The Sackville Royal Commission spent some time examining cannabis and came to some very interesting conclusions. They discovered there was a huge difference between what many people thought and the real medical and scientific facts about marijuana. They concluded: The official record is noteworthy for the lack of complications relating to cannabis, other than criminal proceedings The Sackville Royal Commission looked at five different choices the law could make regarding cannabis. These were: Total Prohibition, ("Zero tolerance/War on Drugs), Prohibition with Civil Penalty (the "on-the-spot" fines in South Australia and the ACT), Partial Prohibition (like Germany, Spain and Italy), Regulated Availability (the Dutch Coffee shop model, Alaska from 1975-1986) and a Free Availability option ( with no quality control, age limits or government taxation). When the Sackville Royal Commission recommened for partial prohibition, legal use and cultivation in mid 1979, it put the proponents of cannabis law reform in an unassailable position because all they had to call for was the implementation of the governments own royal commission. Change, nonetheless, was a long time coming. In 1986 the Canabis Expiation Notice (CEN) or the "on-the-spot fines"system passed (by one vote!) allowing people to grow up to ten plants at the risk of only a $150 fine. The Liberal Party opposed the "de-facto decriminalisation" and vowed to repeal it at the first opportunity. However, for over a decade the CEN system has continued unchanged in South Australia while in the meantime, the ACT and latterly the Northern Territory, Victoria and Tasmania have followed South Australia's lead in backing away from 'the War on Drugs' total prohibition model. In the ten years it has been operating significant problems have emerged with the South Australia decriminalisation model. Although one aim of the CEN scheme was to stop young people ending up with a criminal record, this has not been the case. Since the introduction of "on-the-spot" fines in 1987, four times as many people have been busted per year. Over 17,700 people were issued with an expiation notice in 1994, compared to less than 4,000 people arrested in 1987. The police admit more people aren't smoking - the new laws have simply made busting smokers easier. If you can't pay your fine then you go to court. If convicted, you will receive a criminal record. In 1994 over 9,700 people didn't pay their fine, went to court and got a permanent record. This is more than double the number before "on-the-spot" fines were introduced. While the Democrats and HEMP have argued it is necessary to go beyond the CEN system to go to a model of regulated availability like the Dutch coffee shop model (Democrat leader Mike Elliot currently has a bill to legalise cannabis before parliament), the police and the Liberals want to reduce the number of plants permitted from ten plants to three. So why not have your say? A public meeting to discuss South Australia's cannabis laws will be held at level 2, 187 Rundle St Adelaide (beside the Writer's Centre) at 7.30pm on Monday August 24. Guest speaker will be Mr Paul Christie for the Drug and Alcohol Services Council of South Australia, one of the authors of the recently released report on South Australia's Cannabis Expiation Notice scheme The Social Impacts of the Cannabis Expiation Notice Scheme in South Australia. Other speakers include: Det. Supt. Denis Edmonds (SA Police Drug Task Force) Det. Insp. Graham Lough (SA Police Community Liason Officer on Drug and Alcohol issues) We have also invited politicians from the Liberal, Labor, and Australian Democrats as well as Pastor Morrie Thompson from Teen Challenge and Mr Jamnes Danenberg from HEMP SA. The meeting will be moderated by author/journalist Mr John Jiggens.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Triumph On World Cup Stage Forgotten As France Fails The Dope Test ('The Scotsman' Sumamrizes The Doping Controversy Surrounding The Tour De France Competition) Date: Sun, 02 Aug 1998 18:52:57 -0500 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: France: Triumph On World Cup Stage Forgotten As France Fails The Dope Test Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org Source: Scotsman (UK) Pubdate: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 Contact: Letters_ts@scotsman.com Website: http://www.scotsman.com/ Author: JULIAN NUNDY In Paris TRIUMPH ON WORLD CUP STAGE FORGOTTEN AS FRANCE FAILS THE DOPE TEST Triumph on World Cup stage forgotten as France fails the dope test International competition is getting a rough ride among both the cyclists and the grand masters. AS CHARLES Dickens once said of another momentous period in French history: "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times." There was always going to be a hangover after the revolutionary zeal of the country's World Cup victory celebrations on Bastille Day. And this summer's sporting party has been well and truly spoiled by the Tour de France, the world's greatest cycle race, which has been blighted by riders' strikes and allegations of drug-taking. The tour sank into further chaos yesterday when the 133 riders left in the race stopped 20 miles into the 17th stage, between Albertville and Aix-les-Bains, to protest against anti-doping raids by police on team hotels. Most riders - except for the Once and Banesto teams, who have pulled out and the Riso Scotti team - started again. But they raced without their race numbers, thus making the stage invalid. And they continued only after the tour's director, Jean-Marie Leblanc, gave them guarantees that future police hearings would take place "with dignity and discretion". The overall race leader, Marco Pantani of Italy, was among the first to tear his number off his jersey. He later said he was ready to give up if the rest of the riders did too. Mr Leblanc said he was hoping the tour could go on in spite of the riders' threat to quit if police searches of their hotels continued. But there were more raids. Officers investigating the French/ Swiss Festina team, who were kicked out of the race on doping charges, turned up at the Once team's hotel in Chambery during the race. Once, led by a Frenchman Laurent Jalabert, had in turn pulled out in protest at a police raid on the TVM team hotel on Tuesday. "I stop. I made this decision knowingly. I was too depressed to start the race," said Jalabert. The TVM riders, who were taken to hospital by police on Tuesday night for dope tests, decided to compete despite getting little sleep during the night. The team leader, Jeroen Blijlevens, complained that the police treated them "like animals, like criminals". The Tour de France has been rocked by the doping scandals since its start in Ireland on 11 July. As disgrace has descended on the tour, the cars marked with the logo of the sporting daily L'Equipe, the main race sponsor, have been singled out for special treatment. The L'Equipe cars are targets for stones and insults as they follow the race. L'Equipe has become a whipping boy, both because its editor J=E9r=F4me Bureau, campaigned for two years against the management and selection methods of the national football side - making himself spectacularly unpopular after the triumph against Brazil on 12 July - and because it was L'Equipe which blew the whistle on dope in the Tour de France 18 months ago. However, dope and the Tour de France have been synonymous for 30 years since the death of a British rider, Tom Simpson, in 1967. Simpson had been taking amphetamines. Now the drugs are most likely to be hormones, often hidden by masking products. The respected French daily Le Monde yesterday quoted an anonymous cyclist as describing the usual treatment as "two steroid pills every morning, one injection of testosterone a week and [hormones] to top it off". The same rider said: "When you take them, you are no longer the same man. You actually feel your body change." Graeme Obree, Scotland's double world champion cyclist, has claimed he was stripped of the chance to ride in the Tour de France because he refused to take drugs and to pay into a "slush fund" to buy drugs. "I broke two of the toughest records in the book ; and won two world titles but after saying no to drugs, I never received one more offer." His words echoed admissions by cyclists to French investigators. The competing cyclists have told French police of payments from their winnings into illicit funds to pay for drugs on the sly. In the meantime, the cyclists have become the targets of the French sense of humour, with an impersonator on the Europe 1 radio station giving cruel daily updates on the woes of a fictional fallen star. But even the low that the tour has reached has not taken all the tarnish from that special trinket the French nation so enthusiastically embraced after beating Brazil 3-0. After a five-week football tournament highly praised for its organisation, France has indulged in an orgy of pride. Since then, youngsters have taking to wearing blue soccer shirts, as often as not emblazoned with the number 10 of the scorer of the first two goals, Zinnedine Zidane, and French flags are still fluttering from balconies in a country little given to nationalistic outbursts. At the same time, the impact of the Tour de France is more limited. Most of the participants are European, and, while, the World Cup win raised spirits in France's suburbs, the tour is mainly a festival for the less populated countryside. In the French popular perception, one Paris businessman said, in the end, it will be the French establishment - from media to the police - "who are the bastards". He went on: "They are the ones who have ruined a summer festival". The tour is scheduled to finish in Paris on Sunday. And the whole country will be glad.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Tour Protest Forces Police To Alter Inquiry Tactics ('The International Herald-Tribune' Says The Tour De France, Plagued By Doping Scandals, Was Stopped Twice Wednesday By Rider Protests And Faced A Premature End For The First Time In Its 95-Year History - 'We Haven't Been Treated Like Human Beings . . . If The French Police Want To Ruin Their National Race, They're Doing It,' Said Bobby Julich, An American In Second Place) Date: Sat, 1 Aug 1998 13:26:46 -0700 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: France: Tour Protest Forces Police to Alter Inquiry Tactics Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Peter Webster Source: International Herald-Tribune Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.iht.com/ Pubdate: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 Author: Samuel Abt TOUR PROTEST FORCES POLICE TO ALTER INQUIRY TACTICS Angry Over Hotel Raid, Riders Stage Slowdown A1X-LES-BAINS, France --- The Tour de France, plagued by drug scandals, was stopped twice Wednesday by rider protests and faced a premature end for the first time in its 95-year history. The riders agreed to start Thursday only if the French police modify their tactics in a spreading investigation of some of the 21 teams in the world's greatest bicycle race. Not until Jean-Marie Leblanc, the director of the race consulted with government officials and promised a change in police methods---including questioning in team hotels rather than police stations---did the riders call off their second sit-down. But they ripped off their numbers, making the stage unofficial, and then rode at a moderate speed without competition, reaching the finish line nearly three hburs late. Three teams quit en route in protest, as did a handful of individual riders. A fourth team quit later. The turmoil was unprecedented. Six teams are now under suspicion; the riders are divided in their response to the investigation, and Tour officials spent the day trying to keep the race going to its scheduled end in Paris on Sunday. They had been successful Friday, when the riders refused to start to protest media treatment of the drug scandal, which began before the race started in Dublin on July 11. The focus of the protest Wednesday was a police raid on a hotel in which four riders from the TVM team were taken to a hospital Tuesday night and tested for drugs in their urine, blood and hair. A TVM car was seized by French police in March and found to contain what was described as a huge quantity of illegal performance-enhancing drugs. "They treated us like criminals, like animals," said one of the Dutch team's members, Jeroen Blijlevens. "They took Bart out of the shower, made us sign some papers and took us away," he continued, referring to his roommate, Bart Voskamp. The riders were held more than four hours for the tests and released half an hour after midnight. Word of their treatment did not reach the full 140-man pack until it was rolling Wednesday in the 17th of 21 daily stages, 149 kilometers (92 rniles) from Albertville in the Alps to Aix-lesBains. The riders also learned then that the police would visit the hotels of three more teams, Casino, which is based in France; Polti, based in Italy, and ONCE, based in Spain. Three officials of the Festina team based in France, had previously been arrested, and two officials of the TVM team are being held in a French jail. Another French team, Big Mat-Auber, came under suspicion Tuesday when one of its vans was stopped by the police and found to contain medication that was sent to a laboratory for analysis. As the news of the TVM treatment and the police investigation at the three team hotels Wednesday night filtered among the riders, they stopped for 25 minutes after 32 kilometers. "I'm fed up," said their spokesman, Laurent Jalabert, the French national champion and the world's top-ranked racer. "I can't continue under these conditions, being treated like a criminal." He entered a team car, quitting the race, and was followed shortly by the other ONCE riders. His directeur sportif, or coach, Manolo Saiz, a Spaniard, said: "We may never come to race in France again. This may be the end of cycling. It's the biggest crisis we've ever had and we're a family heading for divorce." Leblanc, the Tour director, pleaded with the riders and their coaches. "I ask you, directeurs sportif my friends, I ask you, the riders, my friends, to continue the race," he said on the radio that links the race. "We were as astonished as the riders about the way TVM was treated," he said on television later. "We are discussing with the authorities how further investigation of the Tour de France riders can be handled with the utmost dignity." With that promise, the race resumed, but only for a dozen more kilometers. Since Jalabert was gone, Leblanc met with the riders' new spokesman, Bjarne Riis, a Dane with Telekom and the winner of the 1996 Tour. "If the riders caa be assured that the investigation will be held with a certain dignity, they will continue with the Tour de France tomorrow," Riis said. The riders then resumed the journey at a speed about half their usual 40 kilometers an hour. At the feeding zone, the Banesto team, like ONCE from Spain, and the Riso Scotti team from Italy dropped out. So did individual riders, including two TVM riders. After the stage, the Vitalicio team, also from Spain, withdrew. By the end of the day, the field was down to 111 riders. Although representatives of teams with riders among the leaders were not threatening further disruption, team officials and riders condemned police tactics. The police, who are under the orders of an investigating magistrate in Lille, far to the north, had no official spokesman and could not present their side. "I understand the riders' unhappiness," said Alain Bondue, a former racer and now manager of the Cofidis team from France. "You have to let them do their job. The TVM riders left the hospital at 12:30 without eating and without being massaged. That's not right. "That the police want to investigate is logical but why not wait till Monday, a day after the race ends?" Asked if Cofidis expected a visit from the police, Bondue said, "Who knows? They don't telephone ahead." The police were waiting at the hotels of ONCE, Polti and Casino when the race pulled into Aix-les-Bains. The four TVM riders remaining, including some of those taken to the hospital Tuesday night, led, the pack across the line and were applauded by a large crowd of fans who had remained for that moment. "If the French police want to ruin their national race, they're doing it," said Bobby Julich, an American with Cofidis who is in second place behind Marco Pantani, an Italian with Mercatone Uno. "We haven't been treated like human beings," he added. "Which TVM wasn't last night. That's what we're protesting against. That's why the stage was ruined today." If the treatment continues, he said, "It was the understanding of the riders that it wauld have pretty dire consequences. That's pretty much what everyone said. "Leblanc and Riis spoke, Leblanc said he spoke to the minister in charge of the police, he gave his handshake, he gave his word that nothing like last night would happen again." Other riders, who preferred not to be identified, said they had been cool to the stoppages but felt they had to concur in the mass action.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Riders Put Tour In Chaos ('The Los Angeles Times' Version Of The Tour De France Doping Controversy) Date: Mon, 3 Aug 1998 13:45:11 -0800 To: firstname.lastname@example.org From: email@example.com (MAPNews) Subject: MN: France: Riders Put Tour in Chaos Cycling: Outraged by drug ... Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Jim Rosenfield Pubdate: July 30, 1998 Source: Los Angeles Times (CA) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://www.latimes.com/ Author: JOHN-THOR DAHLBURG, Times Staff Writer Riders Put Tour in Chaos Cycling: Outraged by drug investigation, they slow pace so much Jalabert withdraws. Officials void results. PARIS--Dogged by an unprecedented drug scandal, the riders in the Tour de France mutinied Wednesday, slowing their pace to an amble and threatening to reduce the 1998 edition of the summer cycling classic to a fiasco. A disgusted Laurent Jalabert, one of the world's top cyclists, withdrew from the race along with the rest of the riders from the Spanish ONCE team. Two other squads, Banesto of Spain and Riso Scotti of Italy, also threw in the towel. The racers were protesting the treatment given the night before to counterparts from the Dutch TVM team, whose hotel rooms were searched by French police. Six TVM riders were taken into custody for more than three hours so samples could be taken of their blood, urine and hair. "We were treated like animals," TVM sprinter Jeroen Blijlevens said before the Tour was supposed to resume Wednesday afternoon. To vent their outrage, the cyclists turned the 92-mile leg between Albertville and Aix-les-Bains in the French Alps into a sporting farce. In one of the craziest days since the Tour began in 1903, the participants took an hour to cover the first 15 miles, and halted twice to converse and consult. During the first 20-minute pause, Jean-Marie Leblanc, director of the world's best-known cycling race, implored the racers to resume. They got back on their cycles but removed the numbers they habitually wear, making it impossible for Tour officials to register performances for the day. At that point, Jalabert decided he had had enough. Along with his teammates, he left the course in ONCE's escort automobiles. The Frenchman said he and his comrades were tired of being treated "like criminals." Banesto and Riso Scotti quit soon afterward. In the afternoon and evening, French police searched the hotel rooms of at least five teams, including Jalabert's ONCE, looking for illegal performance-enhancing drugs. This year's Tour has been under a dark cloud since it opened July 12. Three days before the race began, Willy Voet, a trainer from the top-rated Festina team, was caught by French customs officials with more than 400 vials and capsules of pharmaceuticals in his car. Among the drugs, officials said, were EPOs, synthetic hormones that increase an athlete's endurance by stimulating the production of red blood cells. Tour organizers subsequently expelled the whole Festina team, including popular French cyclist Richard Virenque, who has strenuously denied using drugs. But the admission by five of Virenque's teammates that they had been using drugs has become the leading news story in France, and for days this country has been arguing whether the Tour has become a superhuman contest in which drugs are almost indispensable to win. "I still don't know the extent of the sickness, the proportion of doped racers, but I fear it's very important," said Daniel Baal, president of the French Cycling Federation. "Today the boil is lanced; we must go all the way. We must know everything." On Wednesday evening, the riders cruised casually into Aix-les-Bains about two hours late, booed by some unhappy spectators. In a show of solidarity, four members of the TVM team were allowed to cross the finish line first. They were followed by Marco Pantani, 28, the Italian hill climber who currently wears the leader's yellow jersey. The Tour is scheduled to end Sunday with a 91-mile dash across northern France ending on the Champs-Elysees of Paris. Officials quickly declared Wednesday's stage, the 17th in this year's contest, void. But even veteran Tour watchers say it's now impossible to predict whether this year's race will go all the way to the finish. Leblanc, the Tour's director, said Wednesday that he was in touch with authorities so that future police interrogations and medical tests would take place in the cyclists' hotel rooms, and not in hospitals or police stations. Leblanc met with Danish racer Bjarne Riis, winner of the 1996 Tour, who informed the other riders during the second pause of the day of what Leblanc told him. But even Riis didn't sound certain that this year's race would run its full course. "What we're doing is to save the Tour, to save cycling," Riis said of Wednesday's protest. "Tomorrow, it will be another race. I hope we can arrive in Paris." Copyright 1998 Los Angeles Times. All Rights Reserved
------------------------------------------------------------------- Riders' Protest Forces Organizers To Nullify 17th Stage ('The Associated Press' Version In 'The San Luis Obispo Telegram-Tribune') Date: Fri, 31 Jul 1998 02:04:30 -0400 To: email@example.com From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) Subject: MN: France: Riders' Protest Forces Organizers To Nullify 17Th Stage Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Jo-D Harrison Pubdate: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 Source: San Luis Obispo Telegram-Tribune (CA) Section: Sports, page C-1 Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.sanluisobispo.com RIDERS' PROTEST FORCES ORGANIZERS TO NULLIFY 17TH STAGE AIX-LES-BAINS, France (AP) - Angry Tour de France riders crossed the finish line holding hands in symbolic victory, only to be told their entire day of racing through the Alps would not count. In another jarring day for cycling's showcase event, the Tour de France was again hit wiht a protest Wednesday over a drug investigation. It was the second such protest by the riders, who have grown increasingly indignant since the race began July 11. "I can't race in this climate of permanent suspicion where we are taken for criminals," star French rider Laurent Jalabert said. Organizers nullified the 17th stage after riders either dropped out or slowed in protest. The Dutch team TVM, implicated in the drug scandel, led the pack across the line holding hands. The stage ended more than two hours later than scheduled. Seventeen riders from three teams - ONCE, Banesto, Riso Scotti - dropped out of the leg altogether. Riders, fearing further police action, stopped for 15 minutes early in the race and cruised slowly through more than three-quarters of the leg. Many of the 133 riders stripped off their race numbers and briefly stopped at the 20th mile of the leg from Albertville to Aix-les-Bains. The tour has become vulnerable in the face of the growing police inquiry into the use of performance-enhancing drugs. The Festina team has been expelled, and at least five other teams have come under suspicion. On Wednesday night, police in nearby Chambery detained Casino team coach Vincent Lavenu following a search of the team hotel. Casino was one of at least three teams susjected to searches Wednesday. Tour judge Joel Menard announced that the stage was annulled. He said only 116 riders who crossed the line could continue riding today. That put Jalabert of ONCE out of the competition, which is scheduled to end Sunday in Paris. "We're not animals, Everyone, including police, should treat us like normal people," said Bjarne Riis, winner of the 1996 race. "What we did today was to save the tour, save cycling, because it's our life." "They're robbing our dreams," said Thierry Bourguiginon of the Dutch team. "I have the impression the tour is finished. I'm sick." Police on Wednesday descended on team hotels, around the Alpine town of Chambery, including the ONCE team, a day after testing and searching the Dutch TVM team. Police were seen removing garbage bags full of objects from a van bearing the ONCE insignia. France 2 television said that Jalabert was among those questioned. Also searched were the hotels of the Casino team and the La Francaise des Jeux team. Jalabert had led the riders' protest before his team simply dropped out of the go-slow race. Former champion Stephen Roche, speaking on the Eurosport network, said he spoke to Jalabert before he withdrew. "Jalabert was crying," he said. "He said, 'I cannot ride a bike in these conditions. I prefer to work in a factory and be a normal person than be treated like this.'" Tour director Jean-Marie Leblanc asked riders to restart. He promised to speak with them and have "assurances concerning the conditions." "We will restart when we have some guarantees from the police that we would be treated well," overall race leader Marco Pantani said. "We want to be treated like athletes and not as delinquents." Leblanc said on Franc 2 radio that any police questioning would take place in riders' hotels. He added the tour would continue today despite the protest. On Tuesday night, member of the TVM team were taken by police for testing. Police also seized suspect medication in a van driven by officials of the Bigmat team. Earlier in the race, the top-ranked Festina team was expelled from the tour. The first protest came Friday with a sit-down strike, delaying the start of the 12th stage by two hours. One Tuesday, about 100 doses of medication were found in briefcases belonging to Bigmat officials during a routine customs inspection in Chambery on the Franco-Swiss border. The drugs were sent to a police labe in Lyon. Festina riders are accused of using the hormone EPO. TVM officials also are being investigated for supplying the banned substance.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Weekly Action Report On Drug Policies, Year 4, Number 22 (Summary Of International Drug Policy News, From CORA In Italy) Return-Path: (firstname.lastname@example.org) Comments: Authenticated sender is (email@example.com) From: firstname.lastname@example.org To: "CORAFax -EN-" (email@example.com) Date: Thu, 30 Jul 1998 17:51:55 +0000 Subject: CORAFax N.22 (EN) ANTIPROHIBITIONIST OF THE ENTIRE WORLD .... Year 4 No. 22, July 30 1998 *** Weekly Action Report on Drug Policies Edited by the CORA - Radical Antiprohibitionist Coordination, federated to - TRP-Transnational Radical Party (NGO, consultive status, I) - The Global Coalition for Alternatives to the Drug War *** director: Vincenzo Donvito All rights reserved *** http://www.agora.stm.it/coranet mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org *** NEWS FROM THE CORA CORA / ITALY / METHADONE Methadone is considered to be one of the best pharmacological treatments for heroin addiction, the same way insulin is so for diabetics. The CORA reminds us about this, because the case of a child who died after drinking a dose of methadone which was accidentally left unguarded by her drug addicted parents has led some people to ask for a restriction of its use. TRP / RUSSIA Upon initiative of the TRP 95 deputies of the Duma have presented an interrogation to the Constitutional Court: Is the law on drugs legitimate, even though it foresees obligatory medical care and exams for drug addicts, prohibits cures in private hospitals or therapies with toxic substances? *** NEWS FROM THE WORLD 000155 26/07/98 E.U. / ITALY CONSUMERS CORRIERE DELLA SERA 23/07 / LA REPUBBLICA 26/07 Ecstasy, the 'Disco' drug becomes more frightening during new dancing fads. New natural substances are sought for, and home grown mushrooms are beconing more frequent. In the meanwhile the Government is up in arms against Ecstasy, and new initiatives are being though of to offer an alternative to drug consumption. *** 000164 28/07/98 E.U. / ITALY DRUG ADDICT MISCELLANEOUS NEWSPAPERS FROM / VARIOUS DATES The death of a child who drank a dose of methadone which had been left unguarded by her drug addicted parents under medical care of a public service has opened the way to a lot of discussion. Some, like the deputee Pedrizzi of the Alleanza Nazionale party, say that methadone has caused more damage than anything else. *** 000165 28/07/98 EUROPE / SWITZERL / BERNE DRUG ADDICT LA STAMPA / NEUE ZUERCHER Z. The 'witch's herb', popular term for identifing the 'dastura stramonium' is being talked about. The plant can be used to make hallucenogenic teas. There have been ten cases of intoxication, one of which deadly. There is a lot of alarm about this because it is an ornamental plant that can be found in parks and gardens. *** 000157 03/08/98 AFRICA / S.AFRICA DRUG MAFIA NEWSWEEK Owing to poor control of the frontiers, impoverishment of the population and lack of coordination among Police Forces, South Africa is becoming a pole of attraction for international crime. Drug traffic is the center point of such activities. *** 000158 24/07/98 E.U. / GB / LIVERPOOL DRUG MAFIA THE TIMES A gang of drug pushers among whome there were militaries of the Royal Regiment has been stopped. The soldiers confess they sold anphetamines, but deny having done the same with cocaine, heroin or ecstasy. *** 000162 29/07/98 ASIA / LEBANO DRUG MAFIA LA STAMPA Drug traffic has incremented since November 1997, when the USA decided to erase Siria and Lebanon from the list of States that produce narcotics. Now many peasants grow marijuana and opium poppies again, and there is less control over drug pushers. In the Beka region the organized crime works at refining drugs. The whole business is controlled by Siria and the Hezbollah. *** 000163 29/07/98 AMERICA / COLOMBIA DRUG MAFIA FINANCIAL TIMES Public Prosecutor Alfonso Gomez Mendez has released news that more bank accounts linked to the Cali cartel have been found. 37 thousand, containing over 550 million $ and distributed over 90 differnt banks. Former secrtearies of dpeartment, three former policemen, an attorney-at-law and about 30 deputies are involved. On the whole 80 thousand bank accounts of this type have been discovered. *** 000160 23/07/98 E.U. / GB HEALTH IL MESSAGGERO There is a certain alarm among doctors because of Viagra pills being sold in discotheques together with ecstasy. There are high risks of heart failures and cerebral strokes. *** 000156 25/07/98 AMERICA / USA MARKET SUEDDEUTSCHE Z. The Department of Justice has aquitted the CIA from the accusation of having, in the eighties, sold crack in the ghettoes to finance the Contras in Nicaragua in the war aginst the Sandinists. *** 000159 25/07/98 E.U. / FRANCE PREVENTION LE MONDE The Prime Minister, given the new classification of drugs in the Roques report, which bases criteria on toxicity of substances and not on their being legal or illegal, has asked the interministerial office for the fight against drugs (the Mildt) to elaborate new strategies. *** 000161 23/07/98 AMERICA / USA WAR ON DRUGS HERALD TRIBUNE David C. Lewis and June Osborn, respectively Director and Member of the scientific committee of the National Drug Policy say that the war on drugs has been a political and economic failure, particularly because repression has been favoured instead of medical care. *** CLIPPINGS ITALY - On the Emerald Coast, in Sardinia, investigations have started on the recycling of money made by the Russian Mafia together with the local Mafia from drug traffic. ITALY - The city of Turin will invest 103 million Lire in a project of prevention and care against drug addiction. USA - PHILADELPHIA - "The Action Class for Freedom of Therapeutic Cannabis: has denounced the Government because of the unconstitutionality of the law that prohibits therapeutic use of cannabis. USA - LOS ANGELES - Peter Mc Willis, Publisher of the "The Medical Marijuana Magazine", an on-line magazine, has been arrested by the Federal Police with the accuse of drug pushing. Mr. Mc Willis has Aids, and cures himself with a cocktail of medicines that cause him nausea, which in turn he manages to overcome by using Marijuana. The Government does not allow him to use this cure in prison. *** CORA -COORDINATION RADICALE ANTIPROHIBITIONNISTE -ANTIPROHIBITIONIST RADICAL COORDINATION -COORDINAMENTO RADICALE ANTIPROIBIZIONISTA Federated with the Transnational Radical Party NGO with category I consultative status at the UN mailto:email@example.com http://www.agora.stm.it/coranet mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org -------------------------------------------------------------------
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