October 4, 2009
Advice to Defendants
By Steve Kubby
ONDCPI receive requests several times a week from defendants who suddenly find themselves forced to defend their lives, their right to use medical cannabis and even the Bill of Rights. Like you, each defendant is suddenly forced to cope with a predatory criminal justice system that judges them guilty, until proved innocent. This advice is intended to help provide you with the necessary tactics to succeed against the terrifying challenge you now face.
Here are the key concepts you must master to win:
1. NON-COOPERATION WITH TYRANNY IS A DUTY. America was founded on the premise that we have inalienable rights that cannot be separated from us by any law or government. The Drug War is unconstitutional, immoral, and no longer supported by voters or juries. Your non-cooperation with this corrupt war on American citizens is the surest way our Constitution and Bill of Rights can be restored.
2. NONVIOLENCE – We don’t want to kill our enemies, only expose their lies and their greed for power over others. Any form of anger on your part must be left at the door, or it will make you no better than your adversaries and bring failure to your efforts. Only when others sense your commitment to the high road, will the justice you seek become possible. Those who attended my trial saw that I always wore a suit and showed respect. I even held doors open for my prosecutors, so they could push in their huge cart filled with 4,000 pages of lies against me. My polite behavior only made their accusations look more wild and ridiculous.
3. REFUSE TO WAIVE TIME – You have the Constitutional right to a speedy trial and yet virtually every defendant is told by their attorneys to waive their right. What few attorneys ever tell their clients is that if they refuse to waive time, they must be tried within 60 days or the case must be dismissed. In the real world, few prosecutors can prepare a case in 60 days and even fewer courts can organize a jury trial in that time.
4. NEVER PLEA BARGAIN – This is a slippery slope. It might look like a great idea to begin with, but in the end, you lose, everyday for the rest of your life. You won’t get what you were promised and you’ll only endanger others by cooperating with government terrorists.
5. GO ALL OUT ON THE PRELIMINARY HEARING – Winning your Preliminary Hearing means the judge will dismiss the case and your troubles are over. Most defense attorneys will advise you to do little in your Preliminary Hearing, so they can see what the prosecution’s case is about and then prepare a defense. That is definitely the wrong tactic in a bona fide medical marijuana case. You want an attorney who will fight with everything you have to win your case in the Prelim, regardless of the costs or time involved. Top medical marijuana attorney J. David Nick once took a Prelim on for 18 months, until the prosecutor gave up in desperation.
6. INSIST ON A JURY TRIAL – Less than 3% of defendants exercise their right to a jury trial and yet the court system is in near gridlock. Refusing to cooperate and demanding a trial places a significant load on the criminal justice system and is the surest way to end this phony drug war. Nearly all medical marijuana trials end in acquittals or hung juries, so take your case directly to your fellow citizens and trust them to see through the prosecutor’s lies.
7. USE THE MEDIA – Most courts will not allow you to tell your story and you must depend upon the media to get the truth out. Focus on winning in the court of public opinion and your victory with the jury will be assured.
8. TARGET POLICY MAKERS – ignore the police and prosecutors and target their superiors. It is Sheriffs and D.A.s who are the generals in the Drug War and they are the ones who are responsible for your current grief. Organize a recall election against your D.A. Your recall will probably fail miserably, but your D.A. will back off prosecuting other medical cannabis patients, once you put a little heat to their feet.
9. SEEK CIVIL AND CRIMINAL PENALTIES – Use the courts and your local grand jury to obtain indictments and convictions against rogue officials, since this is the ONLY thing sheriffs, police chiefs and district attorneys understand or respect. Never forget what was done to you until EVERY rogue sheriff, district attorney, police chief, and judge has been brought to justice. We owe it to all who have died and suffered horribly in this war to dedicate the rest of our lives to bringing these drug war criminals to justice.
10. REFUSE PROBATION – Probation is no different than plea bargaining, because you are trading away your rights for a deal that will never work in your favor. You are better off to take jail over probation, because probation nearly always leads to further violations and trouble with the law.
11. DOCUMENT ABUSES – It’s your job to document and prove abuse. Sooner or later, a reform-minded administration will be elected and they will want to investigate your charges and seek justice.
You are now a professional defendant. Your life will be your trial. Do what you can to survive and remain true to the belief that YOU ARE INNOCENT. A law was passed five years ago that gives you the RIGHT to use, grow and possess this medicine. Don’t be afraid to stand up for what you believe.
Good luck and remember to focus on the positive.