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Oakland, CA -- Medical cannabis (marijuana) edible producer Michael Martin, 33, will turn himself over to federal authorities Thursday in response to an arrest warrant issued last week. Martin received word of the September 26 Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) raid on Tainted, Inc. while on vacation, and is not considered a fugitive as reported earlier by government and media. This event will coincide with a lively demonstration at the Oakland federal building calling for an end to medical cannabis raids and justice for Michael Martin.
What: Lively demonstration to show support for medical cannabis edible producer Michael Martin as he turns himself over to federal authorities
When: Thursday, October 4 at 9am
Where: Oakland Federal Building at 1301 Clay Street
Who: Statements to be made by Michael Martin, his attorney Sara Zalkin, local physician Dr. Frank Lucido, and Jeff Bishop, an Oakland HIV+ patient who relies on cannabis edibles. ASA Executive Director Steph Sherer to MC
"Raids on people who help patients are increasing across California because the DEA realizes they are at the end of a losing battle," said Steph Sherer, executive director of Americans for Safe Access, a national medical cannabis advocacy organization based in Oakland. "Medical marijuana has been accepted by doctors, the American public, and an increasing number of state and local officials. The DEA won't be able to kick down the doors of the sick and the compassionate much longer." Though, the DEA has increased its effort this year to undermine California's medical cannabis law by raiding more than 40 patients and providers in no less than 10 counties across the state.
Tainted, Inc. provides clearly labeled baked goods and other marijuana edibles to medical cannabis patients and collectives all over California. Edible cannabis products are an alternative to smoking cannabis and are preferred by many patients. The products made by Tainted, Inc. are available only through medical cannabis dispensaries and carry prominent warning labels.
Several local jurisdictions have adopted ordinances, allowing for the sale of edibles by dispensaries, such as the County of Los Angeles, the County of Alameda, and the City of Oakland, where the recent federal raids occurred. A majority of the more than 300 medical cannabis dispensaries across the state provide edible products to their patients.
However, Martin could face twenty years or more in federal prison for his role in supplying medical cannabis to qualified patients. Because federal law does not recognize medical uses for marijuana, if he goes to trial, Martin will not be allowed to tell jurors that his company supplied medical cannabis products through licensed dispensaries to qualified patients. Defense attorneys are prevented from raising state law, local regulations or the vast amount of medical cannabis science in federal marijuana trials. Three others were also indicted as a result of last week's DEA raid: Jessica Sanders, Michael Anderson, and Diallo McLinn.
Studies in the U.S., U.K., Germany, and Denmark, involving the ingestion of cannabis by hundreds of patients, have shown statistically significant benefits, ranging from improved appetite for Cancer patients to a decrease in pain for those with chronic neuropathy, and from a reduction in spasticity and pain for people with Multiple Sclerosis to improvements in motion and quality of sleep for those living with arthritis.
Photos of Tainted, Inc. products: http://american-safe-access.s3.amazonaws.com/img/original/Compassion1.jpg; and http://american-safe-access.s3.amazonaws.com/img/original/Compassion4.jpg
Photo of Martin and his family (wife Elinore, and two sons Tyler, 3 years, and Lucas, 5 months): http://american-safe-access.s3.amazonaws.com/img/original/Martin_Family.jpg
Open letter from Michael Martin: http://www.safeaccessnow.org/downloads/Martin_Letter.pdf
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