Pubdate: Fri, 27 Jan 2006
Source: Globe and Mail (Canada)
Copyright: 2006, The Globe and Mail Company
Author: Colin Freeze
Bookmark: (Cannabis - Medicinal - Canada)
Bookmark: (Kubby, Steve)


Adrenal Cancer Victim Prepared To Take Marijuana Substitute If He's 
Sent To Prison

VANCOUVER -- Before his deportation to California yesterday, Steven 
Kubby gathered his wife and two daughters to his side.

The 59-year-old medicinal-marijuana activist, who suffers from a rare 
form of cancer, wanted to relay the good news that a higher power had 
revealed to him.

"He had a little conversation with God," said his wife, Michele 
Kubby. "And he asked Him, 'Can I survive this ordeal?'

"He got the answer back that, if he tries Marinol, it just might 
work," she said in an interview from the Vancouver Airport, shortly 
after border guards led her husband away.

Marinol is a synthetic -- and legal -- pot substitute that is likely 
to be given to Mr. Kubby if he is sent to a U.S. prison.

Back in 2001, Mr. Kubby fled an imminent 120-day drug sentence in 
California. He showed up in Canada to say that he feared for his life.

He drew a high profile by declaring himself a refugee, arguing that 
his rare form of adrenal cancer could be treated only by marijuana.

Mr. Kubby smokes pot constantly. He insisted to Canadian officials 
that being sent back to jail would amount to a forced abstention from 
pot. He swore that the sojourn from the life-saving drug would surely kill him.

After more than four years of hearings and appeals, Canadian 
officials finally told Mr. Kubby he had run out of due process and it 
was time to go home.

Various courts, tribunals and bureaucrats ruled it highly unlikely 
that American jailers would let Mr. Kubby die in custody.

The activist was once outspoken about his hopes that his battle to 
stay in Canada could prove an inspiration for marijuana advocates 
everywhere. But he quietly obliged with his removal order yesterday.

He was put on a 6 p.m. flight from Vancouver to San Francisco, where 
police and supporters were preparing to greet him.

His wife said it was unclear whether police would take her husband 
into custody immediately. Mr. Kubby is to attend a court hearing on Tuesday.

But the Marinol treatments won't be starting just yet. Ms. Kubby said 
her husband's doctor will also be at the airport with a pen and 
prescription in hand. "When he gets off the plane, he'll be able to 
go to purchase some medicinal marijuana right away," she said.

Ms. Kubby said her husband's need is so dire that she was worried 
about his health while he was in transit. "He has to be medicated at 
all times," she said, adding that hypertension, nausea and headaches 
wrack his system the moment that the marijuana dissipates.

Regardless, she is more hopeful than before that he can live without marijuana.

"Steve truly doesn't want to die," she said. "He got the message, 
that if he can try Marinol, that will work. Maybe that will keep him safe."
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