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Kubby Defense Fund Announces Canadian Board Ruling On Refugee Status For U.S. Medical Marijuana Users
Decision could impact U.S.-Canadian Relations
VANCOUVER, BC and SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. - Nov. 20, 2003 /Send2Press
Newswire/ -- The Kubby Defense Fund (www.kubby.org) announced today that
Canada's Immigration and Refugee Board has made a final decision on
whether American medical marijuana advocates Steve and Michele Kubby are
entitled to permanent refugee status in Canada. The 60-page decision was
officially entered on Tuesday November 18th, but must await translation
into French before it is released next week.
Steve Kubby has been diagnosed with a rare form of adrenal cancer and
has survived much longer than expected by using large quantities of
marijuana to control its deadly symptoms. A decision against Kubby
could force him back to the U.S., where he would be arrested and denied
medical marijuana. A Canadian cancer specialist has testified that Mr.
Kubby could die of a heart attack or stroke, in as little as 48 hours,
if he is denied medical marijuana.
However, if the Board ruling is in the Kubbys' favor, it could open the
door for hundreds, perhaps thousands, of other U.S. citizens to seek
refuge in Canada. In the past, Canada has been reluctant to offer
refugee status to U.S. citizens. Only one American has ever won and
that case was overturned on appeal.
Canada and the US take the 'official position' that there is no
political persecution of citizens in either country, and therefore
refugee status is not appropriate. However, a recently published report
in the Toronto Sun revealed that sixteen Canadians have been granted
refugee protection in the US, directly contradicting this official
The Kubbys have argued that the U.S. government's "War on Drugs" is in
fact political, and that Steve Kubby, an outspoken opponent of anti-pot
laws, has been singled out for persecution by both Federal and
California law enforcement agencies. A national poll shows a majority of
Canadians want the Kubbys to be allowed to stay in Canada.
The full story of the Kubbys' battles with the drug warriors is
chronicled in a forthcoming book, REEFER REFUGEES, written by Richard
Cowan, the former National Director of the National Organization for the
Reform of Marijuana Laws. His book chronicles the Kubbys' battle for
survival, first in the California courts and then in a Canadian refugee
system designed for people fleeing Third World dictatorships.
The Kubbys' troubles began in 1998 when Steve ran for Governor of
California as a Libertarian. During the campaign, he was put under
investigation for six months by a multi-state and federal taskforce,
based on nothing more than an anonymous letter and a DEA report that
later proved to be a fraud. Even though the taskforce found no evidence
of any sales during their surveillance, they raided the Kubby family
home anyway, arresting Steve and his wife, leading to a two-year court
battle that ended in their acquittal on the marijuana charges.
Cowan does not hide his opinions or his indignation, but he often relies
on various contemporaneous media reports to tell the story. The result
is a massively documented account of abuse of power by police,
prosecutors, judges, and even two Attorneys General of California.
At times the story is truly bizarre. Kubby's diagnosis -- and his
benefiting from marijuana -- has been confirmed by leading American and
Canadian cancer specialists. Oddly, Kubby originally discovered that
his symptoms could be controlled by marijuana on a tip from his old
That would not be so surprising, except for the fact that his friend was
Cheech Marin, whose partner Tommy Chong is now in a Federal prison for
selling a glass pipe in Pennsylvania. Former Clinton Drug Czar Barry
McCaffrey liked to call medical marijuana "Cheech and Chong medicine."
He was more right than he knew.
A Preview Edition of REEFER REFUGEES has been published by the Kubby
Defense Fund to provide background information to the news media.
Source of News:
The Kubby Defense Fund
Canada Business Newswire
Health and Fitness Newswire
Find more news like this:
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