Trial In Canada Brings Medical Marijuana To National Attention 8/28/98

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Kris Lotlikar
In a trial with potential national ramifications in Canada, medical marijuana user and proponent Grant Krieger has been convicted of possession of marijuana for the purpose of trafficking after admitting to giving a wheelchair-bound Calgary man marijuana to treat his aliment. The judge is faced with what Krieger's lawyer, Adriano Iovinelli, calls a "catch-22". The court can either give him a fine, which would be seen as condoning Krieger's actions, or put a man suffering from multiple sclerosis in jail for promoting what he sees as a miracle medicine.

Krieger previously attempted suicide after he being largely crippled by multiple sclerosis. Since using marijuana to treat his condition, he is able to walk without a cane and enjoy other activities such as jogging. Krieger says that he will continue his usage whatever the court decides to do. Iovinelli told The Week Online, "Grant is a man on a mission. He could have ended this quickly without the media coverage and low chance of conviction. He choose to see this all the way thought." "I'm in this for the long term; I'm hoping for the best," Krieger stated to the Lethbridge Herald. "This issue has become bigger than me and that's what I intended."

On October 19, Judge Bob Davie adjourned, allowing Iovinelli to gather information about the medical value of marijuana to present to the court. Rob Kampia, Director of Government Relations for the Marijuana Policy Project told The Week Online, "For many patients marijuana reduces the spasticity caused by MS." Many multiple sclerosis users die from starvation after the stomach muscles tighten and don't allow them to eat. "Marijuana can relieve the muscle locking caused by MS in effect helping to stir an appetite for the patient."

"Krieger is a lamb being lead to slaughter to bring marijuana's medical value to national attention," commented Iovinelli. Krieger has been successful in his efforts as there has been national coverage of the trial and talk in parliament for a sub-committee on medical marijuana.

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Issue #56, 8/28/98 Household Survey Reports: Teen Marijuana Use Up Again | Trial In Canada Brings Medical Marijuana To National Attention | Private Researcher Plants First Medical Marijuana Crop | Media Alert: DARE Criticized in Houston | News Briefs | New DRCNet Mailing Lists | Events | Editorial: Spin, You Win
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