Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Bill Would Let Medical Marijuana Patients Include Medicinal Use as Part of Defense


In the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court;s ruling in the Raich case earlier this year, which permits the federal government to continue arresting and prosecuting medical marijuana patients and their caregivers-- even in states where medical use of marijuana is permitted-- U.S. Rep. Sam Farr (D-CA) and his bipartisan co-sponsors have re-introduced legislation to that would let medical marijuana defendants have the right to tell the truth in court.

H.R. 4272, officially dubbed “The Steve McWilliams Truth in Trials Act”, guarantees medical marijuana defendants the right to introduce evidence demonstrating that the marijuana-related activities for which they stand accused were performed in compliance with State law regarding the medical use of marijuana. In addition, the bill specifically limits the government’s ability to seize assets – including medical cannabis plants. Americans for Safe Access is encouraging people to contact their member of Congress to urge him or her to co-sponsor H.R. 4272.

Steve McWilliams was a medical marijuana patient and activist who died earlier this year. He had apparently overdosed on the medications that he had been given in place of the marijuana that he had been denied since his 2002 arrest.


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