Pubdate: Tue, 09 Mar 1999
Source: PR Newswire
Copyright: 1999 PR Newswire


SACRAMENTO, Calif.,  -- The Libertarian Party of
California has "not yet begun to fight" in the case of Steve and
Michele Kubby, who were ordered to stand trial last week on ten and
nine felony drug charges, respectively.  Modesto County Superior Court
Judge Robert Compagna issued his decision Tuesday, March 2, at a
preliminary hearing in Tahoe City Court.

Steve Kubby, the 1998 Libertarian candidate for governor, and his wife
Michele were arrested January 19 in a police raid of their Olympic
Valley home. Despite being legitimate medical marijuana patients
protected under Proposition  215, the Kubbys were charged with
multiple felony counts of conspiracy,  cultivation, and possession
with intent to sell.   The Kubbys have persistently  denied any sale,
insisting they grew marijuana solely for personal medicinal  use.

"That this case has gone this far is outrageous -- it either
demonstrates a complete lack of understanding of the law by the judge
and prosecutors or a willingness to ignore the law," charged
Libertarian state chairman Mark Hinkle.

During the hearing Compagna sustained a prosecution motion to disallow
a Proposition 215 defense, thereby barring the Kubbys' attorneys from
bringing up any issues related to medical marijuana.

"Prop. 215, approved by 5.3 million Californians over two years ago,
was meant to protect people like the Kubbys from suffering.  It's
unconscionable for the prosecution to disallow a medical marijuana
defense," said Hinkle.

As a result of their arrest and prosecution, the Kubbys have been
forced to file for bankruptcy.  Authorities confiscated the computer
equipment Steve uses in his business and have yet to return the
property.  "In their zeal to lock up  law-abiding citizens,
prosecutors have both jeopardized the Kubbys' physical  health and
destroyed their financial health," added Hinkle.

Hinkle announced that the Libertarian Party is studying ways to
increase pressure on Placer County law enforcement, state legislators,
and Attorney General Bill Lockyer to intervene.

"Libertarians are among the leading fighters in the battle for medical
marijuana, and we will continue to fight -- not just for the Kubbys
but for all  medical marijuana patients.  This is only Round One."

The next hearing is scheduled for March 19th in Auburn at which time a
trial date will be set.  SOURCE  Libertarian Party of California

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