Canvassing for Opinion - aka "Blairs Brain on Cannabis"

IMHO prohibition sentiment requires inherent addiction to status quo, an incapacity to visualise beyond the here and now and a desperate desire to know others might feel the same... Reform is not revolutionary, rather it is evolutionary. Having survived banging your head against a brick wall the evolutionist relishes having stopped. / Blair

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Drug accused sent jurors 'legalise cannabis' leaflet

New Zealand Herald - Thursday 29 Jun 2006

Jury panel members at a cannabis cultivation trial were sent pamphlets promoting legalisation of the drug.

The potential jurors mentioned the mail-out when they got to the Greymouth Court House in March 2004 and the police investigation led to the arrest of the man who was meant to go on trial, Philip Noel Robinson.

At his sentencing in Christchurch District Court today, Robinson attacked New Zealand's cannabis laws and still denied that he had any criminal intent in sending out the leaflets.

He said the Greymouth court had been negligent in sending out the jury list without the cover sheet which explained the rules.

That led to him sending it to "friends" along with other papers relating to his court appearance.

Those not familiar with the law had no idea what to do with a jury list, he said.

"The law of cannabis prohibition is a fabricated law, but the Government has refused to withdraw that fabrication," he said.

"The cannabis laws are based on fabricated research and are making innocent people criminals."

The 54-year-old chef said his actions had caused no harm and he did not deserve a prison term.

Robinson was eventually convicted and fined on the cannabis cultivation charge, and then faced trial for wilfully attempting to obstruct, pervert, prevent or defeat the course of justice.

The jury in a first trial could not agree, but he was convicted in the second trial in Christchurch where he now lives and faced sentencing today.

Judge Brian Callaghan said the probation report confirmed Robinson's firmly held beliefs about the legalisation of cannabis.

Sending out the leaflets had been meant to influence the jury members, but the material contained no threats or abuse.

The judge imposed 200 hours of community work.

(Hang on, the same court sent Neville Yates to five months jail for having the mere temerity of defending his medical use... what's wrong with this picture Mr Human Rights Commisioner?)

Blair Anderson
ph (643) 389 4065
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