Posts tagged ‘weed’

May 7, 2012

Forgotten for Days: $20 Million Claim Filed Against DEA


4/20 was a day to celebrate and surround yourself with like minded smokers for many, but for one UC San Diego student it was the start to nearly 5 terrible days that would culminate in a suicide attempt in a DEA holding cell.

Daniel Chong, after celebrating 4/20, was at a friend’s home on Saturday. The house was raided by the Drug Enforcement Agency, who found 18,000 ecstasy pills, along with guns and ammunition. DEA officials have said that the pills did not belong to Chong, and that his extended detainment was an accident, but that has been very little comfort to the student.

Daniel Chong was brought in by the DEA for questioning regarding the ecstasy bust, but was not charged or arrested, and was placed in a holding cell. He was told he would be released that same day. One officer reportedly offered him a ride home. He did not get to leave, however, on April 21st.

Daniel Chong was forgotten in the 5-foot-by-10-foot windowless DEA holding cell, and for nearly 5 days he screamed and cried for food, water, a toilet, but the DEA was deaf to his calls.

Chong told NBC he drank his own urine out of fear of dehydration, and was treated for near kidney failure when finally taken to a hospital. Chong was kept in Intensive Care for 3 days, also recovering from a torn esophagus after eating his own broken glasses in an attempt to end his life. He says hallucinations started on the 3rd day, and without food or water he was sure he would die in the DEA’s cell. He broke his glasses, and began to cut a message into his forearm, the shortest he could think of to express his condolences to his parents, “Sorry mom.”

DEA agents discovered Daniel Chong in their holding cell after more than 4 days unattended, and drove him to the hospital where they paid for his medical care. Special agent in charge of the San Diego division of the DEA, William Sherman, has extended his “deepest apologies [to] the young man,” adding that he ordered an “extensive review” of the DEA procedures leading up this this incident. Chong has filed a $20 million claim against the DEA following what he calls a “life-altering” ordeal.

The articles I found useful for this story:

April 29, 2012

Dutch Court Upholds Law Banning Tourists from Purchasing Cannabis


On Friday, April 27, a Dutch court upheld a new law which prohibits tourists, or non-residents, from obtaining marijuana in any of the 600+ cannabis cafes around the Netherlands, but does not prohibit the visitors from consuming or possessing the plant. Attorneys defending some of the cannabis cafes argued in court that it has not been proven that foreigners are causing more of a public order problem than locals, but the Hague district court judge ruled the new law is legal, and come Tuesday, May 1st, 3 Southern border provinces must comply. The rest of the country will see the ban on selling to foreigners by the start of 2013.

Cannabis tourism is a long standing tradition and source of income to many, small amounts of pot have been legally sold to visitors since 1976.The ban is met with fierce opposition in cities like Amsterdam, places where cannabis tourism account for a large source of the income for the city. The legal sale of cannabis in the Netherlands is estimated to have a $2.6 billion yearly turnover and many cafe owners say they will disobey the new law. Michael Veling, 56, owner of the 420 Cafe and chairman of the Dutch Union of Cannabis Retailers told the Washington Post that shop owners in the city of Maastricht were planning to ignore “this ridiculous law” and were “ready to be arrested.” Maastricht is one of the 3 provinces where the ban begins on Tuesday.

Dutch residents are eligible for a “grass or weed pass” which the cannabis cafes are responsible for issuing and checking the validity of. On Friday, after the Dutch court’s ruling, attorneys defending some of the cafes vowed to appeal the case, Maurice Veldman among them. “We are not a free country anymore because our government asks us to discriminate” Veldman said.

Read through the articles I looked at regarding this story:

April 5, 2012

VIDEO: Oaksterdam Raided

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