Updated | Daniel Holmes’s appeal rejected, prison term confirmed – maltatoday.com.mt

Updated | Daniel Holmes’s appeal rejected, prison term confirmed – maltatoday.com.mt

Marzena HolmesAn Appeals Court has confirmed a 10-year prison sentence for Briton Daniel Holmes, after the accused tried to get his punishment reduced in an appeal that raised the public’s awareness on the harshness of Malta’s drug laws.

Judges Joseph Zammit McKeon, Abigail Lofaro and David Scicluna, presided over the court of criminal appeal.

Daniel Alexander Holmes (pictured) was appealing a jail term of 10 year, six months and a €23,000 fine, after facing five charges of drug possession and trafficking, four of which carried a life sentence, related to the discovery of a cannabis plant in his Gozo home. Holmes admitted to all charges ahead of a trial by jury.

In its sentence, the court of criminal appeal said it would not disturb the first court’s judgement simply because of its severity.

“This was an appeal from punishment, which was well within the  parameters of the law, as the maximum was a life sentence,” Mr Justice David Scicluna said.

In court, where he was flanked by his wife Marzena, Holmes listened attentively to Scicluna delivering his decision. “The defence overlooked the fact that the crime was continuously spread over a period of five years. Albeit claiming to be a cannabis addict himself, the 32 plants and the set-up found at Holmes’s residence prove it was in fact a production line.”

During police searches no evidence of smoked cannabis was found, however the police found clearly marked packets containing cannabis, including a box with 600 grams of dried cannabis leaves. The only evidence of drug consumed inside the residence was a bottle of water containing traces of cocaine.

In his statement to the police, Holmes had claimed Barry Lee was an accomplice and that he had taken responsibility of what was found at his residence. Lee committed suicide in prison in 2008.

“The defence held that the appellant helped the police, however one cannot expect a reduction in punishment simply for not resisting arrest,” judge Scicluna held.

“Those concerned over the suffering their family goes through due to their conviction, should consider this before embarking on criminal activity. Having a family is not a reason to disturb a court’s decision,” the judge said.

In a comment posted in MaltaToday’s comment board, father Mel Holmes said he had never witnessed anything as inhumane in his life as before. “I have never heard anything so inhumane in my entire life. Are they blind to the evidence, or did our defence lawyer present such a bad case they they laughed it out of court?”

Holmes’s defence counsel had told the court how the Briton accused of the trafficking of drugs, ostensibly after a cannabis plant was found at his house, lived in an old, ugly and decrepit apartment, a far cry from the prosecution’s claim of living in luxury.

In his submissions, Kenneth Grima had said the convict was no drug baron, but someone who could not even afford a paltry €150 rent that was always paid by his parents, and who still owed his landlord €400 in water and electricity bills.

Court expert Godwin Sammut had found that the plants found had weighed in their totality, including the roots and stalks, 1,063g – but under oath he stated that this was the weight of the leaves alone, which would lead to a street value of €13,800.

Since Holmes’s conviction, the law had changed so that first-time offenders are not liable to criminal proceedings. But the judge had delivered a prison sentence that was 40% harsher over the eight years requested by the prosecution.

The case generated a public outcry over the harsheness of the sentence, led to a public petition. Holmes, who spent 14 months under preventive arrest, had managed to kick his habit, found a job as a chef, and was in a stable relationship with a Polish woman who had given him a daughter.

Dr Maxine Bonnet appeared for the Attorney General while lawyers Kenneth and Christina Grima appeared for Holmes.

Updated | Daniel Holmes’s appeal rejected, prison term confirmed – maltatoday.com.mt.

80 Cannabis News Headlines and Links 10/29/2013

80 Cannabis News Headlines and Links 10/29/2013

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  10. Birmingham police find 490 pounds of marijuana in truck during Jon Reed | [email protected] The truck was stopped just before noon near the Airport Boulevard exit.
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  26. Ian Mulgrew: New medical marijuana rule about to face lawsuit Vancouver Sun Long-time Fraser Valley marijuana crusader John Conroy is finalizing a lawsuit accusing Ottawa of infringing on the rights of medical pot users and growers.
  27. Arizona Medical Marijuana Patient: 5 Year-old Zander Welton’s The family of Zander Welton, a five-year-old Arizona boy who was initially granted a medical marijuana card by the state of Arizona, which allowed for his 
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  30. UK: Man allowed his home to be used as a cannabis factory UK: Man allowed his home to be used as a cannabis factory – posted in Cannabis News: A man who allowed his home to be used as a cannabis factory has 
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  32. Gallup poll shows public approval of marijuana rises | The Daily news The recent legalization of the recreational use of marijuana in Colorado and Washington as of last year might be a reason for the noticeable jump in support, 
  33. The Crimson White | Legalizing marijuana would be simple,helpful One of the biggest moral and political issues that face us is the challenge of our broken criminal justice system. It is a bloated, messy, unsophisticated.
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  35. Judge Bredar: Public attitude to marijuana has changed – UPI.com BALTIMORE, Oct. 29 (UPI) — A federal judge in Maryland, saying public attitudes on marijuana have shifted, gave two traffickers sentences much shorter than 
  36. A Summit County voter guide to local and state marijuana tax Summit County voters are a week away from determining the fate of a slew of marijuana tax initiatives at both the state and local levels. Among those ballot.
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  38. South Jersey’s First Medical Marijuana Dispensary Open For News, Sports, Weather, Traffic and Philly’s Top Spots.
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  40. Cg Question – Michigan Medical Marijuana Association Cg Question – posted in Legal Professionals:: Under MI law can there be more than one care giver per house hold.
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  44. Rep. Kowall introduces bill to give alternative medicine patients Eileen Kowall today introduced legislation to amend the definition of useable medical marijuana to help provide more ways for patients to use the prescribed 
  45. Ok sought for medical marijuana use of extracts – Arizona Daily Star A lawsuit filed on behalf of a 5-year-old Mesa boy asks a court to rule that the state’s medical marijuana law allows uses of marijuana extracts such as resins 
  46. Man swallowed 1kg of cannabis in failed smuggling bid Irish Times A 40-year-old man who swallowed more than 1kg of cannabis resin in a bid to smuggle it into Ireland has been jailed for a year by a judge who said there must 
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  58. Woodland City Council delays decision on marijuana – The Reflector At an Oct. 7 meeting, Woodland City Council member Benjamin Fredricks said he wanted more public input on the controversial topic of allowing marijuana to be 
  59. Warren backs medical marijuana ‘with the right restrictions Massachusetts Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren (D) said Monday that she favors legalizing medical marijuana, provided the law has “the right restrictions” to 
  60. Marijuana Might Kill Cancer Newsweek Recent research gives new hope and meaning to the phrase “medical marijuana.” In a paper published in October’s Anticancer Research, Wai Liu, a senior 
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  65. ACLU Suing to Add Cannabis Extracts to MMJ Law – Arizona Public Welton’s is one of less than 50 children in Arizona to receive a medical marijuana card, and his parents said taking cannabis oil pills has made his seizures less 
  66. ACLU Files Suit To Allow Medical Cannabis Extracts KJZZ A civil liberties group wants to make sure cannabis extracts are a legal form of medical marijuana in Arizona. Monday, the ACLU filed suit against state officials 
  67. Women’s Role in Legalizing and Destigmatizing Weed Truthdig Women including pop singers, working professionals and stay-at-home moms have been publicly admitting to cannabis use for a number of health and 
  68. Medical cannabis | Facebook Medical cannabis. 1 likes · 0 talking about this. We provide affordable meds for cancer, pain, insomnia among other ailments that plague us daily. Worth noting 
  69. Cannabis Culture in Israel | Weedist Unlike the United States, which has an uncertain future regarding marijuana laws, Israel has a $40 million per year cannabis industry that is thriving.
  70. ACLU Suing to Add Cannabis Extracts to MMJ Law – Arizona Public The American Civil Liberties Union of Arizona filed a lawsuit today that seeks to add marijuana extracts to the list of acceptable forms of cannabis covered by the 
  71. Cannabis yay or nay – PeoplesRepublicOfCork.com Cannabis is a depressant drug. Depressant drugs do not necessarily make you feel depressed. Rather, they slow down your central nervous system and the 
  72. Prosecutor drops cases against medical marijuana shops Longview Daily News “Marijuana prosecutions (even dispensaries) became problematic given this The Longview Police Street Crimes Unit raided Opsal’s dispensary just more than 
  73. First medical marijuana dispensary opens in South Jersey Philadelphia Business Journal (blog) A medical marijuana dispensary has opened in Egg Harbor Township. It’s the first in South Jersey and the second in the state. Called the Compassionate Care 
  74. Berkeley orders 40 Acres to stop cannabis operations Berkeleyside “Currently all rooms used by Mr. Smith are fully devoted to the operation of 40 Acres dispensary,” Daniel wrote in the cease and desist letter. “The October 
  75. Cannabis Fights Cancer and US Support is Stronger Than Ever: The Leafly Medical cannabis sales in Washington D.C. are sluggish. The city’s dispensaries are reportedly losing money because doctors are afraid to write prescriptions 
  76. Marijuana group wants government to grow away Oshawa Express Health Canada’s new “Marihuana for Medical Purposes Regulations” are drawing nigh, but medical marijuana users and growers say they won’t be weeded out 
  77. Erik Sund, Long Beach Pot Lottery Fiasco Figure, Gets Promoted OC Weekly (blog) Anyone unlucky enough to have participated in Long Beach’s ill-fated medical marijuana lottery process is familiar with the name Erik Sund. As assistant director 
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  79. Prosecutor drops cases against medical marijuana shops Cowlitz County Prosecutor Sue Baur has dismissed all charges against five people involved with two Cowlitz County medical marijuana dispensaries nearly a 
  80. Campaign To Legalize Medical Pot In Minnesota Underway Buoyed by public opinion polls shifting in their favor, medical marijuana advocates are lobbying state lawmakers to legalize the use of pot next year for people 

WeedQuest.com, Know Your Weed

Riverside Cop Tricks Autistic Teen into Buying Pot – Reason.com

Riverside Cop Tricks Autistic Teen into Buying Pot – Reason.com

“We felt like our family was totally violated by the sheriff’s department and the school district,” says Doug and Catherine Snodgrass of Temecula, California. Last December their 17-year-old autistic high school son was arrested after twice buying marijuana for an undercover Riverside county police officer.

The undercover operation, titled “Operation Glass House,” spanned a few months and included undercover officers in three area high schools: Chaparral, Temecula Valley, and Rancho Vista Continuation. The officers posed as regular high school students and would ask other students for drugs. Twenty-two students were arrested – the majority of them are reported to be special needs students like the Snodgrass’ son.

Their son, who wished to remain unnamed, is noticeably handicapped and has been diagnosed with autism as well as bipolar disorder, Tourettes, and several anxiety disorders.

“Everyday is a challenge for him,” says his father.

Their son’s list of disabilities have many in the community wondering why he was targeted in this undercover drug operation.

The ordeal began on the first day of school last fall. The family had just moved to a new neighborhood and their son began his senior year at a new school, Chaparral High, in the Temecula Valley Unified School District. Their son rarely socialized, so his mom was thrilled when he announced that he had made a new friend in art class on the first day of school.

“We were so excited. I told him he should ask his friend to come over for pizza and play video games,” says Catherine Snodgrass, “but his new friend always had an excuse.”

His new friend, who went under the name of Daniel Briggs, was known as “Deputy Dan” to many students because it was so apparent to them that he was an undercover officer. However, to their son, whose disabilities make it hard for him to gauge social cues, Dan was his only real friend.

Dan reportedly sent 60 text messages to their son begging for drugs. According to his parents, the pressure to buy drugs was too much for the autistic teen who began physically harming himself.

The Snodgrass’ son finally agreed to buy Dan the pot. Dan give him twenty dollars and it took him three weeks to buy a half joint of pot off a homeless man downtown. This happened twice. When Dan asked a third time, their son refused and Dan cut off all communication.

“Our son was pretty broken up about that and he was back to having zero friends,” says Doug Snodgrass.

On December 11, 2012 armed police officers walked into their son’s classroom and arrested him in front of his peers. He was taken to the juvenile detention center, along with the 21 other arrestees, where he was kept for 48 hours. First hand reports claim that the juvenile center was caught off guard by the large number of arrests and that some youths had to sleep on the floor, using toilet paper as pillows.

Their son was also expelled from high school.

The Snodgrass’ hired a private attorney and took their case to court. In January, he was found not guilty due to extenuating circumstances. The judge had him undergo informal probation and perform 20 hours of community service.

In March, an administrative judge ordered their son to be reinstated into school stating that the district had left their son “anxious and alone” to defend for himself against an undercover police officer.

Riverside Cop Tricks Autistic Teen into Buying Pot – Reason.com.

Pot Higher Education: Pot Professor Popped For Marijuana Cultivation At University of Wisconsin | Marijuana.com

Pot Higher Education: Pot Professor Popped For Marijuana Cultivation At University of Wisconsin | Marijuana.com

Pot Higher Education: Pot Professor Popped For Marijuana Cultivation At University of Wisconsin | Marijuana.com.