Pubdate: Sun, 22 Jun 2003
Source: Olympian, The (WA)
Copyright: 2003, The Olympian
Author: David L. Edwards


On June 4, Federal District Judge Charles Breyer in San Francisco sentenced 
Ed Rosenthal to just one day in prison on marijuana-growing charges.

This was a surprise, since the sentence could have been up to 80 years.

Judge Breyer had presided over the trial and conviction of Rosenthal, 
during which no mention was allowed of Rosenthal having grown the medicinal 
marijuana for patients of the Oakland Cannabis Buyer's Cooperative as an 
approved agent of the Oakland City Council.

After the trial ended, the jurors were angered when they learned they had 
been misled into convicting Rosenthal on federal marijuana charges even 
though he was in compliance with the California medical marijuana law -- 
Proposition 215.

They protested against the withholding of crucial exculpatory evidence and 
petitioned for sentencing leniency.

The jurors' petition and the public outrage over the unfair exclusion of 
exculpatory evidence apparently influenced Judge Breyer to impose the 
lenient sentence.

While I applaud the justness of the outcome this time, we cannot ignore 
that others such as Bryan Epis (10 years) and Keith Alden (44 months) are 
serving long sentences for similar state-approved activities.

In the face of terrorist threats, why are we wasting resources on 
persecuting providers of state-sanctioned medicine?

This inhumane harassment of providers of a safe, effective medicine must 

Furthermore, justice will not be served until Epis and Alden are also freed.

David L. Edwards, Olympia
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