Drug War Chronicle #530 - April 4, 2008

1. Editorial: Should Philadelphia Be Excited About Its Big Drug Bust?

Three police agencies in Philadelphia teamed up to nab the largest stash of cocaine ever found there. But all impact on the market from the bust is bound to be gone in a matter or weeks if not less. Should we be excited?

2. Massachusetts Aims For Marijuana Decriminalization in November

An initiative that would decriminalize marijuana possession in Massachusetts has passed a number of hurdles and appears to be headed for the November ballot, where the prospects are good.

3. Michigan Medical Marijuana Initiative Well-Positioned for November

A Michigan medical marijuana initiative is now before the legislature, which will not act on it, clearing the way for a popular vote in November. The poll numbers are good.

4. Spring Special: "Stop the Drug War" Knapsacks from StoptheDrugWar.org

Help promote the Stop the Drug War cause by buying this new DRCNet membership premium and using it to carry around your books or other belongings for work, school, or wherever life takes you!

5. Law Enforcement: Detroit Prosecutor Charged With Misconduct for Allowing False Testimony in Drug Case, Misleading Jury

Last week, Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy was loudly pursuing criminal perjury charges against the mayor and his one-time paramour. This week, her chief drug prosecutor is accused of abetting perjury by cops and an informant in a drug case, but there's no talk yet of any criminal charges.

6. Law Enforcement: This Week's Corrupt Cop Stories

A Pittsburgh cop rips off the evidence locker, and four Metro Detroit cops get indicted for slinging steroids, helping a biker gang, and lying to the feds.

7. Search and Seizure: Vermont Supreme Court Throws Out Marijuana Conviction Based on Warrantless Aerial Surveillance

The Vermont Supreme Court has thrown a marijuana conviction based on a warrantless overflight by a military helicopter, saying the state constitution's privacy provisions protect residents and "the airspace above their homes and property."

8. Europe: British Drug Advisors Say Leave Marijuana Where It Is, But PM Brown Is Set to Ignore Them

According to the BBC, the British government's drug advisory panel will recommend that marijuana remain a Class C drug. But Prime Minister Gordon Brown is signaling he may overrule it in a move that would take British marijuana policy boldly backward.

9. Europe: Dutch Court Throws Out Maastricht Coffee Shop Ban on Foreigners

The Dutch border city of Maastricht cannot bar foreigners from its coffee shops, a district court has ruled.

10. Southeast Asia: Thailand Launches New "War on Drugs," But Promises No Killings (Maybe)

Five years ago, a bloody Thai "war on drugs" left an estimated 2,500 people dead at the hands of police and soldiers. Now, the Thai government has declared a new "war on drugs," but vows no killings... maybe.

11. Latin America: Ecuador Files Complaint Against Colombia for Spraying Coca Fields Near Border

The government of Ecuador has asked the World Court to order Colombia to stop spraying herbicides on coca fields within 6 miles of the border, saying the spraying harms crops, livestock, and people on the Ecuadorian side. The move comes as tensions with Colombia remain high in the wake of a Colombian raid on Ecuadorian territory that left 25 people dead.

12. Middle East: Israeli Anti-Drug Campaign Links Marijuana Use to Terrorism

American drug czar John Walters tried it a few years ago. Now, the Israelis are tearing a page from his playbook: If you smoke pot, a new campaign warns, you're helping out the terrorists.

13. This Week in History

Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.

14. Weekly: Blogging @ the Speakeasy

"New Study: Pot Smokers Aren't Drug Addicts, They Just Like Pot," "Even if We Succeed, The Drug Warriors Will Take All the Credit," "South Park Takes on Drug Prohibition," "Winning 'Em Over One at a Time," "Looking for a New Boogie Man," "Southpark: 11 Years of Exposing Drug War Fallacies."

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16. Students: Intern at DRCNet and Help Stop the Drug War!

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Permission to Reprint: This issue of Drug War Chronicle is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license. Articles of a purely educational nature in Drug War Chronicle appear courtesy of DRCNet Foundation, unless otherwise noted.

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