Sunday, June 04, 2006

City Resources Wasted as Asian Cannabis Cultivators are Targeted

Indy Bay

Once again, San Francisco voters are outraged that law enforcement resources are wasted by arresting cannabis cultivators at a time when violence prevention programs are threatened with budget cuts. According to anonymous sources in the SFPD, two or more unidentified Asian males were taken into custody on Wednesday, May 30th, 2006, for allegedly operating cannabis gardens in the Sunset District. Narcotics Officers from the SFPD made the arrests in direct violation of the City's Sanctuary Ordinance which states: "that the San Francisco Police Department...[are] not to assist in the harassment, arrest or prosecution of physicians, medical cannabis dispensaries, individual patients, or their primary caregivers attempting to comply with section 11362.5 of the California Health and Safety Code".

Enormous resources are spent in the arrest, prosecution and incarceration of medical cannabis-related providers when those funds could be directed towards other, more pressing needs such as: housing, healthcare and schools. The SFPD continues to use racial profiling as they harass Asian cultivators by claiming they are members of "Asian drug gangs", much like the tactics Lt. Martin Halloran #772 employed when investigating medical cannabis dispensary operator Van Nguyen for the Feds in 2004-5.

San Franciscans, who have overwhelmingly supported cannabis propositions in the past, need to know why Police Chief Fong permitted precious resources to be diverted from violence prevention. We demand that District Attorney Kamala Harris also quit wasting our tax dollars prosecuting cannabis cases and that a moratorium be declared by the Board of Supervisors against the further investigation, arrest, prosecution and incarceration of otherwise, law-abiding citizens who use cannabis.

It's time to tax and regulate cannabis, like any other commodity, and for the City to license cannabis gardens in a common sense approach that will prevent the waste of precious tax dollars.


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