Court Hands Setback To WAMM's Fight for Legal MMJ

Court Hands Setback To WAMM's Fight for Legal MMJ
Posted by CN Staff on September 01, 2007 at 05:54:25 PT
By Kurtis Alexander, Sentinel Staff Writer
Source: Santa Cruz Sentinel
San Jose, CA -- A federal court ruling Thursday dashed hopes of local medical marijuana advocates seeking to keep the government out of their pot gardens.In the case of Santa Cruz County v. Alberto Gonzales, U.S. District Court Judge Jeremy Fogel granted the attorney general's motion to prevent a Santa Cruz marijuana cooperative and its supporters from suing the office to stop federal marijuana raids.
"Naturally, we're disappointed. I had hoped for something better," said Davenport resident Mike Corral, who owned the land where federal agents seized medical pot plants in September 2002, thrusting him, his wife and their collective into the five-year legal battle that's put the them at the center of California's medical marijuana debate.The suit, filed on behalf of Wo/Men's Alliance for Medical Marijuana, the city of Santa Cruz and the county in 2003, contends that federal agents went too far in seizing 165 marijuana plants from Corral's plot. The suit cites the Compassionate Use Act, passed by California voters in 1996, which makes marijuana legal for medical purposes within the state.The Attorney General's Office, though, has maintained that marijuana, no matter how it is used, is illegal under the federal Controlled Substances Act, prompting the office to seek dismissal of the Santa Cruz County suit.While dismissing the suit, Fogel's written decision left two of the county's claims:The argument that medical necessity trumps federal drug laws;A claim based on the 10th Amendment that states have say over marijuana, not the federal government.Those points can be pursued further. "The good news is we're still alive and still in court," said attorney Gerald Uelmen, a member of the county's legal team and professor of law at Santa Clara University.The county's legal team says it will appeal the dismissal of their suit on grounds of the 10th Amendment and build a stronger case that the federal government underhandedly intervened in what should be the purview of the state.Uelmen said the legal team would show the U.S. Justice Department was meeting and conspiring to stop states from allowing medical marijuana laws to succeed.The Attorney General's Office, when reached Friday, had no comment on Fogel's decision or future litigation.Neither Corral nor his wife Valerie were charged after the 2002 raid on their property.Mike Corral declined to comment on the status of WAMM's garden. He did say, however, that the collective continues to cultivate and provide marijuana to about 170 patients.Complete Title: U.S. Court Hands Setback To WAMM's Fight for Legal Medical PotSource: Santa Cruz Sentinel (CA)Author:  Kurtis Alexander, Sentinel Staff WriterPublished: September 1, 2007 Copyright: 2007 Santa Cruz SentinelContact: editorial santa-cruz.comWebsite: Articles & Web Sites:WAMM Raid: News & Pictures Keeps Door Open for WAMM's Case Restate Case on Medical Pot Cruz, ACLU Renew Fight for Med Marijuana 
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Comment #2 posted by FoM on September 01, 2007 at 08:09:29 PT
nuevo mexican 
I am not sure what you want me to post but you are posting it for others to check out right here in a comment.I wanted to say a sure fire way to make people turn their back on Governor Richardson is to mention heroin. I don't want him treated like they treated Gary Johnson. Stepping into that arena ended the whole thing for Johnson when he did that. 
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Comment #1 posted by nuevo mexican on September 01, 2007 at 07:58:17 PT
Bad news for WAMM, good news in NM!
I found the English version, it was headlines in last weeks paper, so I missed it!I've never 'news hawked' properly here, so I am requesting you post this article at C-News, as the English version of this story made FRONT PAGE HEADLINES, and this week, it was reprinted for the Spanish-speaking community, and now I love the Taos News again, it used to be a great paper, and has suddenly found its' true purpose again, and is doing a great job!!!! I must say!:
Check out the way this story is presented to the locals! Marijuana sweep yields no arrests
 Federally funded, multiagency op turns up little pot By Chandra Johnson
 The Taos News
 Friday (Aug. 17) afternoon wasn’t the first time Robbie Gordon’s house in Three Peaks had been inspected via helicopter and New Mexico State Police, but it was the first time they respected his medical card.
 Gordon is one of 34 people in New Mexico who has a state health depart­ment- mandated medical marijuana card that Gordon obtained as a result of an injury that caused neurological damage in his back. According to the New Mexico Health Department, it is legal for people like Gordon to grow and maintain either four mature mar­ijuana plants, three seedlings or keep no more than six ounces of marijuana at their residences.
 “(The police) asked if I minded if they had a look around and I said I did,” Gordon said of Friday’s attempt­ed search. “They said they had rea­son to believe I had marijuana, and I showed them my medical marijuana card and they left.” to all for your posts, this issue has finally come to a head in the U.S. and with Bill Richardson running for President, he must go further to support Gary Johnson's vision of regulated, dispensing of heroin, cocaine, and Cannabis to offset the unbridled profits that come from prohibiting any substance that anyone can get if they want it anyway, anywhere, anytime, and at extremely high risk!For What?The Prison/Military/Corporate Complex and billions in profits, and the cost: human life across the globe!!Period!Nada, Zip!Letters to the editor:Is ‘Twister’ a productive use of tax dollars?
 My wife and I moved to New Mexico recently, in search of a quiet spot far different from the urban Midwest we left behind. We bought a delightful little house on five forested acres in Carson.
 Last Friday (Aug. 17) we decid­ed to go for a swim in our new pool with, I think, a reasonable expectation of privacy. Shortly thereafter a helicopter flew very, very low over us. It continued flying over our house for two hours straight, at times joined by a second helicopter. We had to shout to hear each other, our pets were terrified and we were furious.
 The sheriff ’s office informed us that the New Mexico State Police was search­ing for illegal pot growers. We filed a harassment complaint with them.
 I just heard on the radio that the effort was dubbed “Operation Northern Twister,” and resulted in no warrants or arrests. I haven’t figured out if “Twister” refers to a tornado (do the police really want to be thought of as Storm Troopers, aka Nazis?) or, more likely, refers to the popular party game, an activity pro­ducing nothing other than laughs and embarrassment for the participants.
 Is this a productive use of precious tax dollars? Taos News has found it's voice again, check out this Editorial about the new Sheriff, and his Alberto Gonzales' approach to releasing public records and information. EDITORIAL
 Sheriff Romero, we need to know what’s going onArmed robbers invaded homes on Taos’ west mesa. Two individuals were reportedly kidnapped at gunpoint.
 Marauding animals are terrorizing multiple neighborhoods throughout the county.
 There’s a lot of crime happening in Taos County, but Sheriff Miguel Romero and his staff are nowhere to be found.
 The Taos News has gotten calls from residents who have called the sheriff ’s department and gotten no response.
 Repeated calls from reporters about incidents have gone unanswered. Freedom of Information Act requests for reports get nowhere, despite state law requiring a custo­dian of records to keep and provide the documents in a timely manner.
 And, symbolically, there is no sign directing Taos County residents to their Sheriff ’s Department office off Blueberry Hill Road.
 A sense of fear is beginning to spread among county residents, and it’s not difficult to see why.
C-Newsers are now aware of the situation that exists in the state of New Mexico, and any calls, letters, articles written, video, and compilations on this subject will help.We must make a bigger effort to balance out the dire news coming from Cali, with the good news from NM,as the People of New Mexico are not people you want to poke sticks in the eyes of. By the way, we New Mexicans believe we live in New Mexico, not the Useless States of Amerikkka!Imagine any country ever calling itself New America?NOT!Buena bye! 
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