McCormick, McWilliams Denied Medical Marijuana Defense, Enter Pleas 12/6/99

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Todd McCormick and Peter McWilliams, barred by a federal judge from presenting any information regarding the medicinal use of marijuana, their own medical conditions or even the existence of Proposition 215, entered separate guilty pleas in federal court in California.

McWilliams, from his wheelchair, gave up his right to appeal the decision in return for a sentence of 0-5 years in the hope that his deteriorating medical condition would convince the judge to give him probation rather than jail time. McCormick pled guilty to counts that carry a five-year mandatory minimum prison term, but in so doing, maintained the right to appeal the judge's decision denying him a medical defense.

"The government is accusing us of attempting to sell marijuana to a medicinal buyers' club, and yet they say that we can't even discuss the medical issues in our own defense. That's just outrageous," McCormick told The Week Online.

McCormick and his attorneys hope that the judge will allow him to remain free pending his appeal. McCormick has been free on half a million dollars bond, put up by actor and activist Woody Harrelson since his arrest last year.

McCormick and McWilliams have web sites at http://www.ahemp.org and http://www.mcwilliams.com.

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Issue #117, 12/6/99 Graves at Border Illustrate Consequences of Prohibition | Eisenhower Foundation Finds Drug War, Hard Line Criminal Justice Policies Not Working, Violence Remains High | Politicians, Scientists, Celebrities Criticize Medical Marijuana Research Guidelines | McCormick, McWilliams Denied Medical Marijuana Defense, Enter Pleas | Other Medical Marijuana News | Judge Judy Slammed in Australia and US for Needle Exchange Remarks | AIDS Action Grades Clinton Administration, Congress an F in Prevention | University Will Not Operate Safe-Injecting Room; Uniting Church Steps In | Calendar Update | Job and Internship Opportunities | On the Web: Corporate Watch Feature on the Prison Industry | COMMENTARY: Judge Judy Biased and Illogical on Needle Exchange Issue | Editorial: Mass Graves in Mexico
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