Feds Raid Wheelchair-bound Paraplegic For Medical Marijuana [Updated]

The federal government is so desperate to undermine New Mexico's new medical marijuana law, they've started arresting harassing handicapped people:
MALAGA, N.M. — Agents with a regional drug task force raided Leonard French’s home in southeastern New Mexico on Tuesday and seized several marijuana plants [Ed., it was actually just 6 seedlings]
But the wheelchair-bound man said he’s certified by the state Health Department to possess and smoke marijuana for medical reasons. The 44-year-old lost the use of his legs about 20 years ago as the result of a motorcycle crash and now suffers from chronic pain and muscle spasms. [Santa Fe New Mexican]
Normally, the DEA would avoid this kind of bad publicity. But since New Mexico's medical marijuana program just started, they're trying to intimidate patients and confuse legislators in other prospective medical marijuana states:
A press release jointly issued by the Pecos Valley Drug Task Force illustrates the political nature of the raid, reading in part, "Citizens of New Mexico need to be aware that they can still be prosecuted on the federal level even though New Mexico has a law permitting marijuana for medicinal use." [DPA]

Drug warriors keep arguing that medical marijuana laws create conflict between state and federal laws, but all they have to do is stop arresting threatening patients and there'd be no problem. They're creating confusion and then citing that confusion as an argument against state laws that protect patients. Meanwhile, sick people like Leonard French are caught in the crossfire, and countless other patients are afraid to try medicine that could help them.

Revealingly, Mr. French has not yet been charged with a crime. You see, DEA is tough enough to arrest wheelchair-bound medical marijuana patients, and even boast about its authority to continue doing so. All of that serves their interest in scaring people and creating doubt as more and more states pass laws to protect their citizens from precisely this sort of foul treatment. But they won't actually try to put him in jail because that would be just hideous.

So the real message here, for those reading between the lines, is that the feds aren't always going to enforce federal law. And that tells you everything you need to know about the debate over medical marijuana. This is all a big stupid publicity stunt, and while there are casualties to be sure (getting arrested and losing your medicine does suck), the whole "conflict with federal law" argument is largely a hoax.

Regardless, we cannot tolerate any federal efforts to scare people out of treating their illnesses with doctor recommended medicine that is legal in their state. That is obscene, and it's no surprise presidential candidates are lining up in opposition to it.

Update: My mistake. Leonard French wasn't taken into custody, so "arrested" was the wrong way to describe what happened to him. I've updated the post accordingly. It's important, because patients in New Mexico should understand that you're not in any great danger if you choose to participate in the medical marijuana program. I should have been more careful about this, because I certainly don't want to perpetuate these intimidation tactics. The fact that he wasn't even arrested is significant.

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That's fucked up.

Pot's going to be legalised, it's just a matter of time. For the feds to take it so far as to start arresting paraplegics is ridiculous. I think whoever was the cause of this arrest should be shot.

afraid not



Vote Ron Paul and he will

Vote Ron Paul and he will change this. The only candidate that's a doctor so I'll take his word for it. This war on drugs is insane and Ron Paul gets it and is already putting his life and career on the line to change things.

med marijuana in New Jersey can be legal

James Milles from cherylmiller.org is running for state sen, in Toms River NJ in November, The libertarian party is running him on the ballet right here in NJ, SO PEOPLE SPREAD THE WORD IT CAN BE LEGAL IN NJ JUST GO VOTE in November for him help spread the word!!!! He will legalize it.

pot tokin' granny

it`s just a matter of time until an old elderly woman in a wheelchair will be killed by trigger happy pot cops. the kathryn johnston debacle in atl. taught them nothing. wheelchair granny will have a few plants, medicinal marijuana, see the feds coming to invade and will brandish her trusty 12 gauge. maybe a cop will be shot, but you can bet that wheelchair granny will riddled to pieces. maybe that will be the straw to break the camels back.

Yea tottaly....

Fuck the DEA...
Just the Worlds Biggest Gang...
They just pist cuz they aint gettin the good 80 percent cut of all drugs moved ...
Fucken assholes,
Nekro G

Medical Marijuana as schedule 2 substance.

Marijuana continues to be a schedule 1 substance.

Have any of the states, that have medical marijuana statutes on the books, ever thought to declare marijuana as legitimate prescribed medication and force the federal government to declare it as a schedule 2 substance?

Matt_Potter's picture

North Carolina schedules pot differently

In North Carolina marijuana and other pot-based products (hash, oil, etc) are schedule 6. MJ is the only drug in the schedule 6 and it's the lowest one. Heroin, qualudes, MDMA, and most hallucinogens are Schedule 1. Coke, PCP, opium, and some pharmacuetical drugs as well.

Now I can tell you, NC is nowhere near getting a medical marijuana law, and it's lax scheduling does nothing to change people's attitudes about the drug.

Controlled Substances Act

The constitutionality of the Controlled Substances Act as a whole was challenged in Gonzales v. Raich. Unfortunately, the Feds continue to contend that marijuana has no medical value. The states don't have the power to reissue the schedules, although they can lessen penalties for amounts of marijuana in possession.


hmmm lets just think for a minute.... who created this horrid Drug Enforcement Agency? .... a certain RICHARD MILHOUSE NIXON! thats all you need to know...

nixon and the dea

nixon created the dea because the cia was becoming so powerful through their intercontinental drug trafficking operations that their power was eclipsing that of all three branches of government, particularly the executive branch. the dea was created by an executive order to take some of the ill-gotten power back from the cia and place it under the auspicies of the executive branch. i believe they created their own frankenstein's monster. twenty percent of all global trade is illegal drugs. that's alot of fucking benjamins. what's really scary, is that if you look up any clandestine united states federal agency on wikipedia, including the cia, fbi, nsa, nro, etc., you will find pages and pages of information. if you look up the filthy reptilian narcs at the dea, you get a couple paragraphs. kinda spooky, huh?

And the DEA kept saying

And the DEA kept saying they'd never go after patients, oh no, they'd never, ever do that...the swine.

The nation is in the worst fiscal shape it has ever been in it's entire history; the National Debt is in the trillions. That debt is powered by bank loans from the Fed Reserve. Which means the DrugWar is being 'fought' on borrowed money.

Any household that runs into budgetary problems has to cut back on unnecessary things. As should a government. So...just how necessary is an agency that does this? It's long past time, in these financially stretched times, to remind your Congresscritters and Sin-a-tors that an agency that does this is wasting precious taxpayer's dollars...as well as violating the politically-expressed will of the citizens of the State of New Mexico, California, Oregon, etc.

If the moral outrage of this isn't enough to stop it, then the example of the over-stretched household must be used to get the attention of those who think this isn't an issue. Sadly, in 'Bottom Line Amerika' , money seems to be the only proper impetus...

Schedule 2

Gonzales v. Oregon, 546 U.S. 243, 258 (2006)

The Attorney General has rulemaking power to fulfill his duties under the CSA. The specific respects in which he is authorized to make rules, however, instruct us that he is not authorized to make a rule declaring illegitimate a medical standard for care and treatment of patients that is specifically authorized under state law.

drug scheduling fiasco

The entire premise of putting drugs in class one is that they have no medical benefit. Well, acetylmophine, better known as heroin, is a pain medication, probabaly weaker than fentanyl. Cocaine, was the first local anesthetic used. And, it still is, in some places. Other countries have used an ecstacy-like drug (or actually the drug, itself) to treat psychiatric problems! There are a few "drugs" that the feds might justify, as schedule one. But, as I see it, the majority of class one drugs have medicinal value. The entire concept is flawed. But, we have the DEA to tell us what is proper medicine! The cops use a "medical director" of their persuasion, to make medical edicts! I hate politics!

What a mess!

Medicinal Marijuana

It would be nice for the Medical Marijuana law in New Mexico to be worth a shit. The law says that the state will produce it and distribute the marijuana to needy patients. Although the law has gone into effect the Department of Health states they will not grow the marijuana and distribute it to needy patients because they are in fear of prosecution, therefore they hand out permits to needy patients, advising them to grow their own (which they have to obtain illegaly).

the New Mexico Law is screwed up and is not worth it's weight in gold (or should I say marijuana). there is no provision on follow-up and accountability to the patients. This law was put in place and with no authority overseeing this law.

I believe in compassion for the needy but there are other proven methods to get the affects of marijuana. They do have marijuana in a pill for that these patients can obtain and has been approved for disbursement.


You guys wanting to legalize marijuana in the United States...do you really want that? Do you want to be driving on the road, with not only the drunk drivers but the "stoners". Please this would only cost the tax payers more money. If you want to legalize marijuana, legalize all the drugs, then all law enforcement has to do is investigate burglaries, sex crimes and homicides. 80% of all crimes are drug related.

The homeless would increase along with crime. You people need to wake up!!

French is a shit

I wonder if French has a criminal record! What brought law enforcment to his attention anyway? There is more to the story, has to be!!! If your a doper your always a doper....good for law enforcement....let French take vallum or something that has been approved. My father is in a wheel chair with a spinal cord injury and he is not interested in smoke weed. He is 70 years old, French is 44.

Fuck French and this whole dope legallization....I dont want my children to be around shit like this.


The guy lives in a wheelchair and will spend the rest of his life in it. Do you really care what medicines he takes?

You can't think of something you'd rather have the cops do than bother him?

What the hell does this have to do with your children?

wow ur a fukin idiot

do some research before u make an asshole of urself. have another beer inbred

"Fuck French and this whole

"Fuck French and this whole dope legallization....I dont want my children to be around shit like this." Quote from anonymous

Oh, so you'd rather that they become alcoholics and beat their wife and kids once a week, kill an innocent bystander with their car on a drunken night, or contract liver disease and die slowly and painfully? Which is it, I'd love to know...

People like yourself are so obtuse - you ARE the problem we have here in the states.

The Dutch haven't been negatively impacted by their coffeeshops. Their kids, in a worldwide study, are listed as being the 4th happiest population of youngsters in the world. The kids in the US are somewhere in the teens. FAR behind the "Evil Dutch" as you probably refer to them as.

Don't be ignorant - look at the facts.

``God bless America?''

What the phuque? Who could ACTUALLY believe the Almighty would bless an evil and UNHOLY union of fully-militarized, quasi-totalitarian POLICE STATES?

........('(...´...´.... ¯~/'...')
..........''...\.......... _.•´
``The Man'

If I were a suffering patient in need of a plentiful supply of effective pain-management drugs I would be forced to expatriate from the US because of its senseless, CRUEL, and INHUMANE drug policies.And SO WHAT if people want it legalized for recreational use? Were it not for the RAMPANT racism and bigotry which prevailed in the early 20th Century it never would have be outlawed in the first place.

The United States is such an EVIL country controlled by make-believe “Christians” (who are obsessed with using the law to force their Puritan values down our throats) and, in years gone by, racists (remember that for most of its history the US was a RACIST, WHITE-POWER country). The War on Drugs was motivated —and remains driven— by hate, bigotry, and intolerance. This is fact, NOT one man’s opinion. Is it right that these seem to be the prevailing “American values” anymore? Just read a few message boards to see how these drug-warriors think.

Even though defense lawyers make a LOT of money from it, they are for ending the War on Drugs. Check THIS LINK out.

Something is TERRIBLY WRONG with our criminal justice systems. Why else would these people want to slay the goose that lays the diamond-studded golden eggs? Think about it people!

Medical Marijuana

First of all the United States is not an evil country. There are alot of good people here its the people who run the country that are not so good.

In my opinion legalize marijuana for medical reasons is a good thing. It helps people who need it relieve the pain they are feeling. People who have been sick know what constant pain is and would agree that if it can help someone over come the everyday pain of illness it has to be a good thing. I am a suvirior of cancer and if I could have smoked a joint to relieve the pain I would have. And if I ever have too I will even if it is not legal. I will take care of myself before I let the government dictate how I live and what I consume in my body. The talk about how bad pot is and they spend so much money on trying to control it but they never will. They can't even control the alcohol problems we have and thats legal and worse then pot ever will be. How many people are killed everyday because of alcohol? I would even hate to see the numbers....How many people are addicted to legal drugs.....Hmmmm hate to see those numbers.........
I agree that marijuana should not be legailzed for everyones use but damn if a person is dying and sick let them enjoy what is left of their lives without pain.....If marijuana could help that let them GOVERNMENT STAY OUT OF THEIR LIVES........

MJ Profits

As soon as states start managing the growth and sales of MJ for medicinal purposes and start lining their purses with all those profits it will turn the tide in favor of legalization. Money motivates the powerful. However there will likely be a big showdown with the federal government as they will see it as both a tempting monetary target and a threat to their self assumed control over the nation.

My "Big Brother" was born in 1984

Well, hopefully it wont take long for the baby boomer generation to start getting into some serious offices and they can share with the rest of us what we have been legally deprived of for so long. "God Bless America?" I say, God, if you are up there, please take a shit on Congress's rich bitch face.

ARRESTED is the right word!

The Oxford dictionary also defines arrested as: 2. Stop or check the progress of!

Clearly Mr. French's implied rights to Life, Liberty, Happiness, and legally acquired property were arrested by the Dumb Evil Assholes & local narco agents.

To imply that one must be physically taken into custody to constitute an 'arrest' is, well, playing into the prohibitionists game of semantics.


Mr. French is a felon for Manufacturing Marijuana in Michigan. New Mexico still says that this is ok for a convicted felon (prior conviction of Manufacturing Marijuana and in possession of a firearm during a drug trafficking crime) to legally grow his own Medicinal Marijuana. Please people get a life....


Shows how good governments are, at taking care of things! People slip through the cracks all of the time. How many out there, that chose to smoke weed, are actually being caught? Probably just a small percentage of the group! Mostly poor and/or black people, who can't afford the lawyers!

alcohol vs. marijuana

A previous post said "Oh, so you'd rather that they become alcoholics and beat their wife and kids once a week, kill an innocent bystander with their car on a drunken night, or contract liver disease and die slowly and painfully? Which is it, I'd love to know". Yes, they prefer that all these things happen rather than have people use cannabis instead of alcohol. Hard to find words for such craziness. Maybe mass hysteria, or pure fascist league.

Pain Control

I've been in a wheelchair from a Spinal Cord Injury in '81 after being hit by a drunk driver. Immediately, the pain was intolerable and I was on all kinds of pain medications over the years but now nothing seems to work and I don't want to get addicted. I will try Marijuana as soon as I can, but it's illegal in Fla and they will bust you even if you're a paraplegic.
Fuck these assholes at the DEA. They've ruined so many people's lives so they look good. Most people probably like Nixon;s War On Drugs even though it's costing the taxpayers 40 billion dollars a year while the government is involved with the smuggling. So who should be arrested?

Free The Weed

I am a single father of three young children who smokes marijuana for constant leg pain. My leg was badly broken in a bike wreck back in 85 at the age of 23. I have been to the docs and hospital so many times for pain and all they say is I can get pain pills. Basicly get drugs. I want the choice to buy the expensive drugs from the goverenment or grow my own medicine that I smoke. Each time I smoke I risk getting arrested and getting my kids taken away. I am an ex hardcore drug addict so I know all about the habbit forming drugs the Gov. tries to shove down our throats. It is time America.FREE THE WEED.

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