Cannabis Seeds

Hemp News 20

Hemp News No. 20

Compiled by

Paul Stanford




The following wire stories are provided as a public service by
Tree Free EcoPaper, makers of 50% hemp (cannabis) and 50% cereal straw
paper. Tree Free EcoPaper is the world's only supplier of wholesale
quantities of hemp paper. We offer an electronic catalog which you can
recieve by dropping us an e-mail request. We'll send you our free samples
and hemp paper catalog if you give us a postal address. You can call us
toll-free at 1-800-775-0225 from the U.S. and Canada. Our phone number
for calls outside the U.S. is 503-295-6705. Our headquarters is in
Portland, Oregon and our paper is produced in Asia. Without further
ado, please enjoy the news:


circa 04/16/94   [untitled - College Students in Survey Favor Legalization]

LEGALIZE IT?: The results of a new survey showing that American college
students overwhelmingly favor the legalization of marijuana comes as a surprise
to anti-drug and pro-legalization advocates alike. Allen St. Pierre, spokesman
for the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, said the U.
Magazine survey of 1,700 students at 230 schools shows the media has failed to
recognize the growing support among students, environmentalists and doctors for
legalization. But anti-drug advocates questioned the accuracy of the survey. Sue
Rusche, executive director of National Families In Action, said drug-use trends
 tracked through annual surveys of 17,000 high school seniors showed only a 2 to
3 percent increase in marijuana use in 1993, and very little support for
legalization. U. Magazine editor Ari Cheren said the survey reflects a backlash
against the war on drugs, and a growing feeling that marijuana isn't as
dangerous as cigarettes or alcohol.
   ------


RTw  04/18/94         IRISH FARMERS SEEK PERMISSION TO GROW CANNABIS

    DUBLIN, April 18 (Reuter) - An Irish farming research body, anxious to carry
out European Union calls to diversify from milk and cereals, is seeking
government permission to grow cannabis.
     The state-funded Agriculture and Food Development Authority (Teagasc) has
asked for a licence to grow an experimental plot of the plant in Carlow, some 60
miles (90 km) south of Dublin.
     "We require a licence and are discussing with the Department of Justice,"
Michael Miley, spokesman for Teagasc, told Reuters on Monday.
     The licence would allow Teagasc to grow cannabis sativa or hemp, which was
used to make fibres for rope and sacking before the plastics boom of the 1960s.
      The plan is part of a drive to diversify available land away from
conventional tillage crops, encouraged by the European Union's Common
Agricultural Policy.
     "The EU is active in promoting the growing of hemp," Miley said.
     Although part of the marijuana family, hemp has low levels of the drug and
a user would have to smoke a sackful to get a kick.
     Ireland, like Britain and other EU countries used to grow hemp for
manufacturing twine some 30 years ago.
     There will be strict conditions imposed on the hemp crop and it will be
harvested before the flowering stage -- the stage at which it could be used as a
drug, Teagasc said.
  REUTER


APn  04/19/94        Crime Bill

By CAROLYN SKORNECK
 Associated Press Writer
   WASHINGTON (AP) -- Some drug offenders could receive life sentences and
states would be eligible for more prison funds under changes the House made
Tuesday in a proposed crime bill, but lawmakers balked at limiting appeals of
inmates on death row.
   The House voted 303-126 for a Republican amendment that would make those
convicted in federal court of a third serious drug offense eligible for life in
 prison. A version of the legislation produced by the Judiciary Committee had
focused on violent felonies and would not have counted a serious drug offense as
the final strike in the "three-strikes-and-you're out" plan.
   "I take strong exception to those who deny the relationship between drugs and
violent crime in our country," said Rep. Gerald Solomon, R-N.Y., who proposed
the amendment. "I don't know why we're de-emphasizing this terrible scourge."
   Countered House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jack Brooks, D-Texas: "This bill
is designed to put violent criminals who want to kill you in jail, not to just
put people who are hauling marijuana around and smoking pot in their back yard."
   "If we're going to fill up our jails with people like that, then there will
be much less room for the severe violent criminals" who have committed one or
two offenses, said Rep. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., chairman of the Judiciary
 Committee's crime panel.
   The Clinton administration opposed Solomon's amendment because it wanted to
target "incorrigible repeat violent offenders." It supported an amendment by
Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., to eliminate all drug offenses from the
three-strikes language.
   The House rejected that amendment. It approved by voice vote an amendment by
Rep. Harold Volkmer, D-Mo., to add bank robbery and robberies and burglaries
involving controlled substances to those felonies counted as strikes leading to
the life sentence.
   The $10.5 billion in prison grants would increase total spending to $27.5
billion, but the grants' sponsor said the amount would be reduced later.
One-quarter of the additional money would be used as bonuses for states that
 force violent criminals to serve longer prison terms.
   Debate on the House bill was scheduled to resume Wednesday.
   The Senate crime bill passed last November, like the pending House measure,
gives equal weight to serious drug and violent offenses in its three-strikes
provisions.
   The House brought its bill into line with the Senate version by eliminating
language that would have given death row inmates just one opportunity to appeal
their cases to federal courts. The amendment eliminating the language was
sponsored by Rep. Henry Hyde, R-Ill.
   "We've been down that road the last two congresses," Hyde said of efforts to
change the way death row petitions to federal court are handled. He proposed
dealing with the appeal provision in a separate bill.
    The new prison spending money was a compromise between Republicans who wanted
to tie the money to states' achievement of what they call truth in sentencing --
requiring violent criminals to serve at least 85 percent of their sentences --
and state officials who recoiled at the estimated $60 billion it would cost them
to make the necessary changes.
   The House narrowly rejected a bid by Rep. Bill McCollum, R-Fla. to increase
the $3 billion in prison funding previously included in the crime bill to $10
billion, but to require states to impose truth-in-sentencing provisions before
they could get the money.
   The House crime bill also calls for authorizing $3.45 billion for 50,000 more
police, $7 billion for crime prevention, $2 billion for rehabilitation and $1
billion for Treasury Department law enforcement.
    House leaders have said they would accept the Senate's figure on new
community police -- $8.9 billion for 100,000 more police, although a Justice
Department official said the 100,000 officers could be hired for about $1.5
billion less.


UPse 04/19/94        [untitled - Three Strikes]

By MARY ANN AKERS
   WASHINGTON, April 19 (UPI) -- The House, wading through a series of
amendments to a major anti-crime bill, voted Tuesday to toughen sentences for
drug offenders, strip the legislation of reforms for death row appeals and
increase money for prison grants.
   Following through on an election-year promise to get tough on crime, House
members voted 303 to 126 to expand a controversial "three- strikes-you're-out"
proposal to include serious drug offenses as any one of the three strikes.
   As originally written, the bill had mandated that the third strike against a
person already convicted of two serious felonies must be a conviction of a
 federal violent crime, and not a drug offense.
   Rep. Jack Brooks, D-Texas, chairman of the Judiciary Committee was not
persuasive enough in his argument against the amendment offered by Rep. Gerald
Solomon, R-N.Y.
   "This bill is designed to put violent criminals who want to kill you in jail,
not just people who are hauling marijuana around and smoking pot in their back
yards," he said, adding punishment emphasis should be on "rapists and violent
criminals" instead of on minor drug dealers.
   The first two strikes of the three-strikes provision apply to crimes
involving murder, a serious drug felony -- such as trafficking -- manslaughter,
assault with intent to kill or rape, sex abuse, kidnapping, hijacking and arson.
   The third strike, however, must be for a conviction of a federal violent
 crime and, with passage of the Solomon amendment, a serious drug offense. The
House also voted to add convictions of bank robbery and burglaries involving
drugs to count as a strike.
   Originally under the bill, only robbery involving a dangerous weapon or
resulting in serious bodily injury would count as a strike.
   Earlier, members approved an amendment offered by conservative Rep. Henry
Hyde, R-Ill., to strip the bill's habeas corpus provisions aimed at reforming
death row appeals processes.
   Republicans argued the bill's death row provisions would have afforded
convicted criminals an endless appeals process that would mean the death penalty
would never again be carried out in the United States.
   The Republicans argued the legislation would overturn a series of Supreme
 Court decisions, which Hyde contended have made death row appeals more fair to
"the forgotten victims."
   The House effectively adopted the position of the Senate, which did not pass
any habeus corpus reforms in its version of anti-crime legislation last year.
   The House also voted to authorize another $10.5 billion to the $17 billion
legislation for a new program of grants for state prisons, while rejecting a
Republican amendment to increase from $3 billion to $10 billion funds already
allocated in the bill for states to build or expand prisons.
   The funds would have been contingent, however, on states enacting so- called
"truth in sentencing" legislation, which would mandate prisoners convicted of a
second violent felony serve at least 85 percent of their sentence.
   A final vote on the bill was expected Thursday. Differences between the House
 and Senate bills would have be worked out in committee and the reconciled
version of the legislation, with its final price tag, would then be considered
by both chambers.


circa 04/19/94        [untitled - Alice in Chains Member Sentenced for Pot, Theft]

   ALICE IN CHAINS AND BEHIND BARS: Mike Starr, a founding member of the Seattle
rock band Alice in Chains, has been sentenced to 30 days in the Houston jail for
misdemeanor drug possession. Last Friday he was sentenced to 90 days in jail for
misdemeanor theft. Starr, 28, was arrested last week at Houston's
Intercontinental Airport while trying to check in for a flight to Los Angeles
 with a suitcase he had stolen from the baggage claim area. Authorities searched
him and found he was carrying marijuana.



UPce 04/20/94        Firefighters discover marijuana

   EDWARDSVILLE, Ill., April 20 (UPI) -- A couple from Troy faces drug charges
stemming from an alleged marijuana-growing operation in the basement of their
home, discovered when firefighters were called to extinguish a weekend fire.
   James Kohler was charged Tuesday in Madison County Circuit Court with illegal
possession of marijuana with intent to deliver.
   His wife, Cheri Kohler, was charged with unlawful possession of marijuana.
Both are 45 years old.
   Circuit Judge Phillip Kardis set bail at $25,000 for James Kohler, who
remained free after posting $2,500 bond. Bail for Cheri Kohler was set at
$15,000, but she was released on her promise to appear in court.
    A fire broke out Sunday evening in the basement furnace utility room of the
couple's home, firefighters said. They said they suspected the cause was an
electrical malfunction. The fire was extinguished without major damage to the
rest of the home.
   Firefighters who saw the marijuana-growing operation in the basement called
police. Troy Police Chief Robert Noonan said his officers recovered 43 potted
plants -- 30 cut stalks; three reflector grow lights and numerous chemicals and
hardware items used to grow marijuana, including a carbon dioxide machine to
boost plant metabolism.
   Noonan estimated the marijuana seized had a value of about $10,000. He said
it appeared the Kohlers were experienced in growing marijuana and had at more
than $1,000 invested in the operation. Most of the plants seized were between 3
 feet and 4 feet tall, while a few were seedlings, police said.



WP   04/20/94       Clinton Talks to Teenagers About Guns and Music

By Ruth Marcus 
Washington Post Staff Writer

    President Clinton yesterday responded to the recent shooting of a teacher at
Largo High School by saying the federal government should help pay for security
measures such as metal detectors in schools that need them.
    "Until we get guns out of the hands of our young people, every school that
needs it ought to have whatever security is needed to take care of that,"
Clinton said. "You ought to be safe at school."
    Clinton made his comments at a special 90-minute forum on violence on MTV,
 the cable network where he wooed younger voters in a campaign appearance nearly
two years ago. He was responding to a question from Brandon Dortch, a
16-year-old junior at Largo who referred to the recent shooting of teacher
Barrington Miles by a student who was attempting to sell his father's service
revolver.
   Clinton also expressed disagreement with the use of mandatory minimum
sentences to punish drug crimes, a tactic that Congress and various states have
adopted in recent years but that has come under increasing criticism from judges
 and others who say the resulting sentences are overly punitive in many cases.
   "The mandatory sentencing programs - there've been problems with all of them,
largely because they tend to treat cases that really are different fundamentally
the same," Clinton said. 


APn  04/22/94       Smelly Deposit

   UKIAH, Calif. (AP) -- Clock repairman Robert Laughery's money reeked of
marijuana, and a wiff of it was enough evidence to investigate him on drug
charges, an appeals court ruled.
   Laughery was convicted after a bank teller told police in 1992 about deposits
containing $20 and $100 bills smelling of pot.
   The defense appealed, arguing the stench wasn't enough to establish cause for
a search of Laughery's home, where marijuana plants were found.
   A three-judge panel of the state appeals court in San Francisco disagreed in
 a unanimous opinion Thursday.
   "It does not require a genius to think that a person who seems to have the
only marijuana-smelling money in the neighborhood is somehow in regular contact
with marijuana," Associate Justice Marcel Poche wrote.
   After the teller alerted police, a check of Laughery's banking records showed
$28,000 in deposits over a six-month period. Laughrey reported considerable less
in earnings to tax authorities.
   After a trial judge denied Laughrey's motion to suppress the evidence, he
pleaded guilty to possession of marijuana for sale.
 


UPce 04/22/94       Around the Statehouse

By United Press International
 ------
 EARTH DAY
   It was Earth Day, but the Illinois Statehouse was not a major center of
activity for environmental concern, as pot smokers outnumbered environmentalists
during two sedate celebrations.
   Inside, 12 activists from Peoria, Springfield, Urbana and other central
Illinois towns gathered to hear speeches on issues such as forest preservation,
toxic materials handling and solid waste.
   Earth Day Coalition officials also spoke with members of Gov. Jim Edgar's
 staff to discuss their views on environmental legislation pending this spring
before the General Assembly.
   Outside, 31 people gathered to hear speakers from the National Organization
to Rationalize Marijuana Laws, who only had one topic on their minds --
legalization of marijuana for medicinal purposes.
   "It is Earth Day, and hemp is the most beneficial plant on the planet for
human beings there is," said Joshua Sloan of Urbana, with the Illinois Drug
Ethics Alliance.
   The largely youthful crowd in tie-dyed t shirts and sports caps sat passively
listening to speakers, while three armed secretary of state police officers
watched over them.
 ------


APn  04/22/94        Cocaine-Double Agent

By WILL LESTER
 Associated Press Writer
   MIAMI (AP) -- The government says he earned $169 million flying cocaine for
the Colombian cartels while pretending to be a U.S. Customs Service informant.
   Rodney Matthews, once featured on a "60 Minutes" show about secret government
sources, lived extravagantly, traveling worldwide with his family and buying
jewelry, furs and fancy clothes as they went, federal officials say.
   His joy ride came to an end Thursday when he was sentenced to life in prison
 for smuggling more than 25 tons of cocaine.
   "Rodney Matthews was double-dealing, pretending to be a confidential
informant for the government, but actually using inside information to run his
major narcotics enterprise," U.S. Attorney Kendall Coffey said. "This is a just
result that truly fits the crime."
   He was convicted Dec. 15 and the jury agreed with government estimates that
he had earned $169 million from his drug smuggling activities.
   Matthews, 50, received a life prison sentence for running a continuing
criminal enterprise. He also received two concurrent life sentences for
conspiracy to import cocaine, 12 years for conspiracy to engage in money
laundering and 40 years for money laundering.
   Matthews was smuggling marijuana into Texas in the early 1980s before he was
 caught in 1984 and agreed to cooperate with drug agents.
   By 1985, he was running his own smuggling operations again in Texas and south
Florida, this time with the help of inside information he claimed included
knowledge of military reconnaissance flights.
   His smuggling runs continued from Colombia between 1985 and 1988, prosecutors
said.
   During Matthews' trial, defense attorneys F. Lee Bailey and Ronald Dresnick
portrayed their client as a victim of dueling Customs Service agents, arguing
that since Matthews was an undercover government informant, he was authorized to
participate in drug flights.
   Customs officials in Miami had no comment Thursday on the sentencing.


UPse 04/22/94      German, Swiss could face death penalty

   MANILA, April 22 (UPI) -- The Philippines Senate's leading crusader against
drug trafficking called Friday for the death penalty for two foreigners charged
with possession of 25 million pesos ($909,000) worth of hashish.
   Sen. Ernesto Herrera, chairman of the illegal drugs committee, said Remo
Dalla Corta of Switzerland and Helmut Herbst of Germany should be executed "as a
warning to international drug traffickers operating in the country."
   Dalla Corta, 31, and Herbst, 46, were arrested by immigration officers early
this month in the beach resort town of Puerto Galera for possessing 5 million
pesos ($182,000) worth of hashish, a drug derived from marijuana resin.
   Shortly after the arrest, their landlord reported to the National Bureau of
 Investigation that 22 kilos more had been found hidden in the septic tank of a
house they rented.
   Police believe the hashish came from Mountain Province in the northern
Philippines.
   Dalla Corta and Herbst were being held at the Bureau of Immigration  jail as
"undesirable aliens."
   Drug trafficking is punishable by death under the revised death penalty law
that went into effect Jan. 1.
   The Philippines now has one of the broadest capital punishment laws outside
the Muslim world, allowing the execution of criminals convicted of murder, drug
trafficking, rape, arson, kidnapping, treason and the large-scale looting of
government funds.
    On Monday, a 26-year-old fish vendor convicted of rape and robbery became the
first criminal to be sentenced to death since capital punishment was reinstated.



RTna 04/23/94       S.AFRICA'S SOCCER PARTY PLEDGES SEX AND DRUGS

    By Neil Manthorp
     CAPE TOWN (Reuter) - Score with the Soccer Party. That's the liberal
sex-and-drugs platform of South Africa's newest contender in next week's first
democratic elections.
     The fringe group pledges to legalize drugs and prostitution, do away with
income and sales taxes and make all education free.
     It also promises more jobs, equal salaries for all, cheap gas and sports
and leisure complexes in every town.
     The Soccer Party is listed second on the ballot paper for the April 26-28
poll, with a picture of Rastafarian-dreadlocked leader, rock star James Mange,
 seeking votes.
     "When we are in government we will make a lot of money from the production
of dagga (marijuana). We all know that the farms exist so why not make them
legal?" grins the party's General Secretary Mwandile Lavisa.
     Soccer, the game favored by the country's blacks, does feature in its
manifesto but the party name is an acronym for Sports Organizations for
Collective Contributions to Equal Rights.
     The general secretary, a 27-year-old graduate of Cape Town University,
smiled when he told reporters the Soccer Party was "based on the principle of
uniting the whole country around sport, music and the arts."
     A hastily photocopied, 18-page manifesto explained how it would pay off
South Africa's 136 billion rand ($38.5 billion) debt within 10 years by means of
 a one percent tax on all bank and credit transactions over a value of 2,000 rand
($666).
     All schools will teach sports, music and the arts to exam level.
     Less cerebral but crucial to the party's ethos is the legalization of
prostitution and marijuana, or dagga.
     "Nobody represents the prostitutes of the country. We should use the energy
of these people in a constructive way rather than force them into the closet.
Everyone knows it's the oldest profession in the world." Lavisa said.
     And dagga?
     "Rastafarians use it as part of their religion to meditate...and it is used
as medicine. Alcohol is used and promoted in South Africa so much but its effect
is just as harmful as dagga when it is abused," he added.
      The Soccer Party has 49 candidates around the country. They include
surprise choice Daryll Cullinan, a star of South Africa's national cricket team.
     Lavisa said little on party funding.
     "You could say that we are privately funded but they want to remain
anonymous." He denied, however, that any funds from either dagga or prostitution
were involved.
     "The Soccer Party will be happy if it can make people in South Africa
smile."
  REUTER


circa 04/23/94       [untitled - Memory Lapse?]

   Memory lapse?: Friday's Earth Day festivities at the Illinois Statehouse
 weren't much to write home about, and the unofficial event was made worse
because of a glitch. The National Organization to Reform Marijuana Laws held a
rally outside the capitol building. The scheduled speaker, a woman from the
Families Against Mandatory Minimums organization, forgot to show up.
 ------



dpa  04/25/94       Darmstadt verbietet geplantes "Haschisch-Wochenende"

    Darmstadt (dpa) - Das fuer den 14. und 15. Mai geplante
"Haschisch-Wochenende" in Darmstadt wird nicht genehmigt. Dies hat
Oberbuergermeister Peter Benz (SPD) am Montag entschieden. Er begruendete dies
mit der Gefahr, dass waehrend der Veranstaltung mit harten Drogen gehandelt
werden koennte. Ausserdem fuehre eine entsprechende Veranstaltung alle
Bemuehungen im Kampf gegen Rauschgift ad absurdum. Die Organisatoren des
"Cannabis-Weekends", zwei Initiativen fuer die Freigabe von Haschisch, hatten
 mehr als 10 000 Teilnehmer erwartet. Geplant waren Ausstellungen, Vortraege und
Podiumsdiskussionen rund um die Hanf-Pflanze. dpa ha el 



OTC  04/26/94        PharmChem reports improved first quarter results

MENLO PARK, CALIF. (APRIL 26) BUSINESS WIRE - April 26, 1994--PharmChem 
Laboratories Inc. (NASDAQ:PCHM) of Menlo Park reported that sales for the first
quarter ended March 31, 1994 were $7,458,000, 1% higher than for the first
quarter of 1993. 
   The company realized a loss from operations of $148,000 for the first quarter
this year compared to income from operations of $663,000 for the first quarter
last year.  The net loss for the first quarter of 1994 was $188,000, a loss of 3
cents per share, compared to net income of $336,000, income of 6 cents per
share, for the first quarter of 1993. 
   "PharmChem continues to press forward with development efforts for PharmChek,
the sweat patch drug and alcohol detection system purchased in 1992.  All
 clinical trials and testing data have been submitted to the FDA for the five
most most common illicit drugs -- cocaine, marijuana, heroin, methamphetamine
and PCP.  Although we continue to be frustrated with delays in the FDA review
process, we hope to obtain approval later this year.  In the meantime, we are 
working with several clients to implement pilot programs using PharmChek,"  Mr.
Whitney stated. 
   PharmChem is a leading independent laboratory providing integrated drug
testing services to corporate and governmental clients seeking to detect and
deter the use of illegal drugs. 


UPse 04/26/94         European drug agency launched

By BARRY HATTON

 LISBON, April 26 (UPI) -- The 12 members of the European Drug Observatory met
for the first time Tuesday to discuss a Europe-wide strategy to fight drug
trafficking and abuse.
   The observatory, created by the European Union last December and to be based
in the Portuguese capital Lisbon, also aims to coordinate its efforts with other
international agencies, Portuguese member Luis Marques Mendes said.
   "The observatory will gather information relating to the whole drug
phenomenon, its causes and consequences, its diversification and methods of
 fighting it, and make that information available to all European Union member
states", Mendes told a news conference.
   The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency has described Portugal as one of the main
ports of entry of drugs into western Europe.
   Its 480 miles (800 kilometers) of largely unpatrolled coastline on the
western edge of Europe make it an ideal unloading point for drug shipments,
mostly cocaine from Latin America, the DEA says.



APn  04/27/94       Sheriff Sentenced

   MACON, Ga. (AP) -- A former sheriff was sentenced to 2 1/2 years in prison
for scheming to sell marijuana to raise money for a robbery defendant.
   Dressed in blue jail clothing and surrounded by family, former Bleckley
County Sheriff Ed Coley wept as U.S. District Judge Wilbur Owens sentenced him
Tuesday. He also must serve three years' probation.
   Coley could have received five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
   Coley pleaded guilty April 4 to charges that he conspired to sell 15 pounds
of marijuana to raise money for Bobby Rickerson's defense. Rickerson, 39, was
 charged in February with holding up a convenience store in Bleckley County,
southeast of Macon.
   Coley's share of the marijuana sale would have been $4,500, authorities said.
   Coley's attorney, Charles Erion, said Wednesday his client and Rickerson knew
each other. But Erion would not spell out why the sheriff wanted to help the
defendant.


APn  04/27/94       AP Arts: High Times 20th

By LARRY McSHANE
 Associated Press Writer
   NEW YORK (AP) -- It's been more than a decade since Nancy Reagan first told
America to just say no, 25 years since Woodstock, and Keith Richards is on the
wrong side of 50.
   Signs of the times? Not at High Times, where the counterculture lives on --
and still inhales.
   As the magazine marks its own milestone -- 20 years of publishing -- High
 Times still covers marijuana ... and growing marijuana ... and the price of
marijuana ... and, well, you get the idea.
   "We have always kept true to our grass roots," said publisher John Holmstrom.
"We didn't turn into a culture magazine like Rolling Stone. Our role is the same
as it was in the mid-'70s, the mid-'80s."
   Unlike Rolling Stone, the perception IS the reality at High Times: Cannabis
is king at this publication.
   The magazine debuted on June 2, 1974 -- the year of Patti Hearst's kidnapping
and Richard Nixon's resignation. Its founder was Tom Forcade, a charter member
of the Yippies with Jerry Rubin and Abbie Hoffman.
   It hasn't been all smooth smoking in the years since. High Times was banned
for content in Canada and Iraq. There were hits from the government over
 advertising, a backlash from the war on drugs, an increasingly conservative
America in the 1980s, and its own lack of direction.
   Boosted in part by a new generation of musicians who back the marijuana law
reform, High Times is again flourishing. The magazine now sells 200,000 copies
per month -- down from its haze-day of the mid-1970s, but a solid base.
   "They have clearly stuck to their ideals," said Allen St. Pierre, assistant
national director of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws.
   "All the other magazines of the time -- Head, Party Time, Buzz -- turned into
rags. High Times was never a rag."
   Or a mainstream magazine. Recent articles have included "Outdoor Megaweed in
Minnesota," "Tips For Not Getting Caught Outdoors" -- a cautionary piece for
home growers -- and "Prof. Afghani's Guide to Curing Cannabis."
    February featured a five-page spread on "The Battle for Medical Marijuana"
and an update on Brett Kimberlin, the Indianapolis pot dealer who claims he sold
to ex-veep Dan Quayle. In April, Beavis and Butt-head grabbed the cover --
dressed in hippie garb, smoking a couple of joints.
   The magazine quickly carved a niche in the mid-'70s with its cutting-edge
journalism and dedication to legalization. It was an early home for Tom Robbins,
whose "Even Cowgirls Get the Blues" was excerpted in High Times, and Larry
"Ratso" Sloman, now best known as Howard Stern's co-author.
   But after Forcade's 1978 suicide, things got a little shaky at High Times.
The magazine ventured into harder drugs and psychedelics, alienating some of its
core readership and damaging its reputation.
   "People thought High Times created crack babies," Holmstrom recalled.
    Marijuana -- and readership -- made a comeback when Steven Hager arrived as
executive editor in 1986.
   Although the magazine today is leaner -- 12 full-time writers and five
part-timers, down from a 50-person writing staff in the '70s -- High Times was
nominated in 1992 for a MagazineWeek award for editorial excellence.
   The monthly's typical reader is a male, in his 20s, with some college
education. One more thing: He's a toker. Nine out of 10 who answered a survey
said they smoked pot.
   "But I don't think we get the real stoners. They don't read," Holmstrom said.
"We get people in the more political end of things. We're becoming more popular
as we've gotten more political."
   The politics include the promotion of hemp for other uses -- clothes, paper,
 construction -- and a constant focus on medical marijuana. Glaucoma patients,
people with AIDS and a paraplegic with muscle spasms are among the people
profiled in a spread on pot as medicine.
   The magazine is a loose place to work.
   Music editor Steve Bloom recalls smoking a fat joint in his office during an
interview with rapper Redman. And about drug-testing for new staffers: "We
always joke, `If you don't flunk the test, you don't get the job,' " said Hager.
Pot-smoking is actually not a prerequisite; support of decriminalization is.
   One major reason for the magazine's resurgence, particularly with young
readers, is its links to the new wave of pro-pot musicians. Rappers Cypress Hill
and rockers the Black Crowes -- smokers both -- received cover stories in 1992.
   "That was a big year as far as addressing the new movement of musicians out
 there supporting what we were doing," said Bloom, who joined the magazine five
years ago. "We were surprised the bands were showing an interest in the
legalization movement."
   They are. The Black Crowes played a show for the National Organization for
the Reform of Marijuana Laws. The Spin Doctors, Guns 'N Roses and Pearl Jam are
all pro-legalization. Rapper Dr. Dre named his debut album "The Chronic" after a
potent strain of California pot.
   The new bands appeal to younger readers, but the High Times braintrust says a
lot of the older ones are still around. They might be surprised by one thing:
Although it may never be respectable, High Times is increasingly respected.
   "It's day and night now with how people view High Times," Holmstrom said.
"People now respect us for sticking to our ideals, for fighting the good fight
 all the time."
   End Adv for Wed AMs, April 27



RTw  04/28/94       GERMAN SUPREME COURT LOOSENS ANTI-HASHISH LAWS

    KARLSRUHE, Germany, April 28 (Reuter) - Germany's supreme court loosened
anti-drug laws on Thursday by ruling that possession of small amounts of hashish
or marijuana should not be punished.
     An eight-judge panel rejected a constitutional challenge to anti-hashish
laws as a whole, but backed a more tolerant policy that has been quietly
spreading among German police and prosecutors on small amounts for personal
consumption.
     Conservative allies of Chancellor Helmut Kohl quickly warned the ruling
could encourage use of drugs made from the cannabis plant, although they avoided
directly criticising the court in the southwestern city of Karlsruhe.
      "It would be wrong if the public had the impression that hashish and
marijuana use would now go unpunished," said member of parliament Roland Sauer,
drugs policy spokesman for Kohl's Christian Democrats (CDU).
     Guenther Beckstein, interior minister of the strictly anti-drugs state of
Bavaria, said police would still be free to arrest hashish owners even though
the supreme court urged prosecutors to drop small cases.
     "I think this (tolerance) sets the wrong signal because it establishes a
tendency and allows the misunderstanding that everybody has a right to their own
high," Beckstein told German radio.
     Seven of the eight judges rejected a set of appeals that argued cannabis
products were no more dangerous than alcohol or cigarettes and should be
legalised.
      One judge dissented, arguing there was no differnce between soft drugs,
drink and tobacco.
     In a complex decision, they upheld laws imposing a maximum term of five
years on selling or possessing hashish or marijuana but said prosecutors should
ignore cases of small amounts for personal use.
     That distinction matches a practice first permitted since the law was
revised in 1992 and which has since become standard in some of Germany's 16
federal states.
     The northern state of Schleswig-Holstein for example tolerates possession
of up to 30 grams (one ounce) of cannabis drugs unless police suspect the owner
is a dealer.
  REUTER


dpa  04/28/94      Karlsruhe: Haschisch-Erwerb in geringen Mengen straffrei 

    Karlsruhe (dpa) - Der Erwerb und Besitz von Haschisch in geringen Mengen zum
ausschliesslichen Eigenverbrauch soll grundsaetzlich straffrei sein. Dies
entschied jetzt das Bundesverfassungsgericht in Karlsruhe. 

    In einem am Donnerstag veroeffentlichten Beschluss erklaerte der Zweite
Senat zwar das Haschisch-Verbot mit dem Grundgesetz fuer vereinbar und wies eine
entsprechende Verfassungsbeschwerde zurueck. Ein "Recht auf Rausch" gebe es
 nicht. Gleichzeitig wies er aber die Strafverfolgungsorgane an, beim Erwerb,
Besitz und der Einfuhr von Cannabis-Produkten "in geringen Mengen und
ausschliesslich zum gelegentlichen Eigenverbrauch" von Strafverfolgung
grundsaetzlich abzusehen.

    Der rund 100 Seiten zaehlenden Entscheidung, der zwei abweichende Meinungen
beigefuegt sind, liegen neben der Verfassungsbeschwerde mehrere Vorlagen von
Strafgerichten in Luebeck, Hildesheim, Stuttgart und Frankfurt zugrunde. Diese
hatten anhaengige Strafverfahren ausgesetzt, weil sie das Hasch-Verbot fuer
verfassungswidrig halten. Das Landgericht Luebeck hatte unter anderem mit der
Verletzung des Gleichheitsgebots argumentiert, da andere Rauschmittel wie
Nikotin und Alkohol nicht verboten sind.
 
    Nach Ansicht der Karlsruher Richter gebietet der Gleichheitssatz aber nicht,
"alle potentiell gleich schaedlichen Drogen" gleichermassen zu verbieten oder
zuzulassen. Zwar sei anerkannt, dass der Alkoholmissbrauch Gefahren mit sich
bringe, die denen des Konsums von Cannabisprodukten "gleichkommen oder sie sogar
uebertreffen". Im Gegensatz zu Haschisch stehe beim Alkohol aber nicht die
berauschende Wirkung im Vordergrund.

    Auch wenn die von Cannabisprodukten ausgehende Gesundheitsgefahr nach
heutiger wissenschaftlicher Erkenntnis geringer eingeschaetzt werde als beim
Erlass des Betaeubungsmittelgesetzes, so sei diese doch nach wie vor nicht
unbetraechtlich. Die Gesamtkonzeption des Gesetzes, die menschliche Gesundheit
 zu schuetzen, sei deshalb in bezug auf Cannabisprodukte nicht zu beanstanden. 

    Der Zweite Senat unterstrich nachdruecklich, die geforderte Straffreiheit
gelte nicht fuer den Handel mit Cannabisprodukten als "gefahrintensivster Form"
des unerlaubten Umgangs mit Betaeubungsmitteln. Verstoesse gegen das
Betaeubungsmittelgesetz koennen mit einer Freiheitsstrafe bis zu fuenf Jahren
geahndet werden.

    In ihrem abweichenden Votum stimmte Richterin Karin Grasshof der
Entscheidung im Ergebnis zu, bemaengelte aber, dass die schaedlichen
Auswirkungen, die Cannabis auf das soziale Zusammenleben habe, zu wenig
beruecksichtigt worden seien. Nach Ansicht des Richters Berthold Sommer sind die
 gesetzlichen Strafvorschriften nicht verfassungsgemaess, weil sie die Einfuhr,
den Erwerb und den Besitz schon geringer Mengen von Haschisch zum Eigenbedarf
mit Strafe bedrohen.

    Bei dem aufsehenerregenden Luebecker Urteil vom Dezember 1991 hatte sich das
Gericht geweigert, eine Frau wegen des Besitzes von 1,12 Gramm Haschisch zu
verurteilen, das sie ins Gefaengnis schmuggeln wollte. Der Vorsitzende Richter
hatte in seiner Entscheidung geltend gemacht, Alkohol und Nikotin seien
wesentlich gefaehrlicher als Haschisch. So wuerden beispielsweise die
Folgekosten des Alkoholkonsums in der Bundesrepublik auf jaehrlich 50 Milliarden
Mark geschaetzt, waehrend bei Cannabisprodukten entprechende Zahlen nicht
existierten. Schaetzungen zufolge gibt es vor deutschen Strafgerichten rund 30
 000 Verfahren wegen des Erwerbs oder der Abgabe von Haschisch.

 (Aktenzeichen: 2 BvL 43/92, 51/92, 63/92, 64/92, 70/92, 80/92, 2 BvR
 2031/92 - Beschluss vom 9. Maerz 1994)
 dpa sk gh 


dpa  04/28/94        Karlsruhe lockert Haschisch-Verbot

Karlsruhe (dpa) - Das Bundesverfassungsgericht hat das bestehende
Haschisch-Verbot gelockert. Der Zweite Senat erklaerte in einer am Donnerstag
veroeffentlichten Entscheidung ein Verbot zwar grundsaetzlich mit dem
Grundgesetz fuer vereinbar und wies eine entsprechende Verfassungsbeschwerde
zurueck. Beim Erwerb, Besitz und der Einfuhr von Cannabis-Produkten in geringen
Mengen zum gelegentlichen Eigenverbrauch koenne allerdings von Strafe abgesehen
werden. dpa sk pi  


UPse 04/29/94       Student drug use and abuse grows

   HARRISBURG, Pa. April 29 (UPI) -- A growing number of Pennsylvania students
are using and abusing drugs, according to a report released Friday by the
Governor's Drug Policy Council.
   The report, based on a survey of 6th, 7th, 9th and 12th graders taken last
spring, said an increase was found between 1991 and 1993 in students'
willingness to use and actual abuse of tobacco, marijuana, inhalants, cocaine,
hallucinogens, stimulants and steroids. It said regular use of alcohol among
students has not changed drastically in recent years.
   The report noted many of the survey's findings are consistent with national
trends among students.
    The survey also looked at "youth risk behaviors", including drunk- driving
among 12th grade students. At least once a month, 10.6 percent of seniors drove
after drinking alcohol. Of the seniors who reported drinking regularly, 25.3
percent said they drove after drinking at least once monthly or more often.
   But overall, the report said most students surveyed do not abuse alcohol or
drugs at all. It also said students' attitudes about school, their teachers and
subjects have steadily improved since the first survey was taken in 1989.



APf  04/29/94      Switzerland-Money Laundering

   ZURICH, Switzerland (AP) -- The head of Switzerland's biggest bank apologized
Friday for a drug money scandal which led to the freezing of $150 million in its
accounts.
   "I can assure you that in our executive management the situation is very
clear," Union Bank of Switzerland chairman Robert Studer told a shareholders
meeting. "We don't want any criminal money in our bank and we undertake
everything to keep it away."
   A U.S. government probe of money laundering and cocaine distribution led
 Swiss authorities to block around $150 million in UBS accounts earlier this
month.
   A Miami attorney, Kendall Coffey, has described it as "the largest single
cash seizure of narcotics proceeds to date."
   U.S. authorities recently announced the indictments of a Colombian couple,
Julio Nasser David and his wife, Sheila Miriam Arana de Nasser, on charges of
smuggling 27.5 tons of cocaine and 3 million pounds of marijuana into the United
States from 1976 to 1984.
   Mrs. Arana de Nasser is in a Swiss prison. Her husband, accused of helping
manage the smuggling racket between South America and the United States, is a
fugitive.
   The couple are allegedly the holders of the frozen accounts.
    Studer did not name any names but he told the shareholders meeting that the
customer relationship dated back 15 years. He said the bank was told the money
came from a legitimate hotel and shipping business.
   Swiss banks have a reputation as a haven for drug money and ill-gotten gains
stashed in secretive accounts.
   Recently, the Swiss government has tightened laws against money laundering,
forcing banks to be more careful about their customers.


RTna 04/29/94      GERMAN OFFICIALS, POLICE SPLIT OVER HASHISH RULING

    By Marcus Kabel
     BONN (Reuter) - Opposition politicians and police were split Friday on a
Supreme Court ruling that effectively legalized hashish and marijuana use in
Germany.
     The top anti-narcotics official in Chancellor Helmut Kohl's center-right
government criticized the court's implicit view that the drugs were safer than
"harder" substances like cocaine and heroin.
     "Making a distinction between soft and hard drugs is the wrong way to go,"
the Interior Ministry state secretary, Eduard Lintner, told the newspaper Bild.
     Supreme court judges Thursday upheld the ban on hashish and marijuana in
 principle but said possession of small amounts for personal use should no longer
be punished. Consumers of any illegal drugs had faced up to five years in jail.
     Bild, Germany's biggest-selling daily, ran a banner headline "We say NO"
above a dozen statements from politicians, sports stars and average citizens
criticizing the court ruling.
     The national police detectives' association blasted the decision, saying it
would encourage addiction and open the door for fully legalizing drugs.
     Opposition Social Democrats (SPD) praised the court for granting the
highest legal backing to a practice of not charging hashish and marijuana users
that has spread among overworked police and prosecutors in many of Germany's 16
federal states.
     Hesse state legislature deputy Kurt Weidmann, whose region includes the
 drugs-plagued city of Frankfurt, called the ruling "a brave step toward
de-criminalizing" hashish that could help move drug users from jails to therapy
programs.
     The supreme court, in the southwestern city of Karlsruhe, made its ruling
on appeals from several local criminal courts, who had asked if it was fair to
punish hashish smokers even though alcohol and cigarettes were also unhealthy.
     The ruling left it to state lawmakers to decide what quantity would make up
a permissable "small amount." Definitions under some states' existing tolerance
policies range as high as 30 grams (one ounce).
     Government estimates put the number of hashish and marijuana users at up to
eight million in a country of 80 million people.
  REUTER


RTw  04/29/94      GERMAN CONSERVATIVES SAY ``NO'' TO PRO-HASHISH RULING

    By Marcus Kabel
     BONN, April 29 (Reuter) - German conservatives urged people to just say
"no" to drugs as politicians and commentators split on Friday over a supreme
court ruling that effectively legalised hashish and marijuana use.
     The top anti-narcotics official in Chancellor Helmut Kohl's centre-right
government criticised the court's implicit view that the drugs were safer than
"harder" substances like cocaine and heroin.
     "Making a distinction between soft and hard drugs is the wrong way to go,"
the Interior Ministry state secretary, Eduard Lintner, told the newspaper Bild.
     Supreme court judges on Thursday upheld the ban on hashish and marijuana in
 principle but said possession of small amounts for personal use should no longer
be punished. Consumers of any illegal drugs had faced up to five years in jail.
     Bild, Germany's biggest-selling daily, ran a banner headline "We say NO"
above a dozen statements from politicians, sports stars and average citizens
criticising the court ruling.
     The national police detectives' association blasted the decision, saying it
would encourage addiction and open the door for fully legalising drugs.
     Opposition Social Democrats (SPD) praised the court for granting the
highest legal backing to a practice of not charging hashish and marijuana users
that has spread among overworked police and prosecutors in many of Germany's 16
federal states.
     "If small consumers are no longer punished, that will lower the level of
 crime committed for money to buy drugs," said SPD member of parliament Edith
Niehuis.
     Hesse state legislature deputy Kurt Weidmann, whose region includes the
drugs-plagued city of Frankfurt, called the ruling "a brave step towards
de-criminalising" hashish that could help move drug users from jails to therapy
programmes.
     Liberal commentators welcomed the ruling but questioned the court's finding
that hashish and marijuana could not be put on the same level as alcohol and
cigarettes, which are widely used in Germany.
     "The constitutional judges decided that there is no right to get high, even
though tens of thousands of people each year quite legally drink themselves to
death, encouraged by advertising," the daily Frankfurter Rundschau wrote.
      The supreme court, in the southwestern city of Karlsruhe, made its ruling
on appeals from several local criminal courts, who had asked if it was fair to
punish hashish smokers even though alcohol and cigarettes were also unhealthy.
     The ruling left it to state lawmakers to decide what quantity would make up
a permissable "small amount." Definitions under some states' existing tolerance
policies range as high as 30 grams (one ounce).
     Government estimates put the number of hashish and marijuana users at up to
eight million in a country of 80 million people.
  REUTER


dpa  04/29/94      Unionspolitiker kritisieren Haschisch-Urteil - Kriminalbeamte: Nach
                  Haschisch auch Einbruch freigeben? - Warnung vor Drogen im Verkehr

    Hamburg (dpa) - Das Haschisch-Urteil des Bundesverfassungsgerichts ist von
Unionspolitikern und Verbaenden scharf kritisiert worden. "Wir muessen
befuerchten, dass Jugendliche Hasch jetzt als erlaubt ansehen. Und was erlaubt
ist, ist fuer viele im Umkehrschluss auch nicht schaedlich", sagte
Jugendministerin Angela Merkel (CDU) der "Bild"-Zeitung (Freitagausgabe).

     Der Bund Deutscher Kriminalbeamter erklaerte am Freitag in Bonn: "Wenn in
allen Problemen, mit denen der Rechtsstaat nicht fertig wird, so verfahren
wuerde, muesste bald der Einbruchsdiebstahl ebenfalls nicht mehr sanktioniert
werden, da eine Aufklaerungsrate zwischen acht und 14 Prozent de facto zu einer
quasi Legalisierung fuehrt."

    Das Bundesverfassungsgericht hatte am Donnerstag entschieden, dass der
Erwerb und Besitz von Haschisch in geringen Mengen zum Eigenverbrauch
grundsaetzlich straffrei sein soll. Zwar sei das Haschisch-Verbot mit dem
Grundgesetz vereinbar und ein "Recht auf Rausch" gebe es nicht. Das Gericht wies
jedoch die Strafverfolgungsorgane an, beim Erwerb, Besitz und der Einfuhr von
Cannabis-Produkten "in geringen Mengen und ausschliesslich zum gelegentlichen
 Eigenverbrauch" von der Strafverfolgung abzusehen.

    Der Praesident der Bundesaerztekammer, Karsten Vilmar, appellierte an
Eltern, ihre Kinder nachdruecklich auf die Gefahren von Haschisch oder Marihuana
hinzuweisen. Die Eltern sollten verdeutlichen, "dass das Verlangen nach
haerteren Drogen ... in eine Suechtigen-Karriere fuehrt", sagte Vilmar im
Saarlaendischen Rundfunk. Der Automobilclub von Deutschland (AvD) forderte eine
bessere Aufklaerung ueber drogen- und medikamentenbedingte Gefaehrdungen im
Strassenverkehr. Nach dem Haschisch-Urteil befuerchtet der Club steigende
Unfallzahlen.

    Berlins Regierender Buergermeister Eberhard Diepgen (CDU) erklaerte in der
 "Bild"-Zeitung: "Das Urteil darf uns nicht von einer harten Drogenbekaempfung
abbringen." Nach Worten von Innenstaatssekretaer Eduard Lintner (CSU) ist es
"ein Irrweg, zwischen weichen und harten Drogen zu unterscheiden." Bayerns
Innenminister Guenther Beckstein (CSU) haelt das Urteil fuer ein falsches
Signal. "Haschisch ist keine weiche, sondern eine hinterlistige Droge. Fuer zwei
Drittel der Drogentoten war Hasch der Einstieg."

    Das niederlaendische Justizministerium sieht nach dem Karlsruher Urteil eine
weitere Annaeherung zwischen der niederlaendischen und der deutschen
Drogenpolitik. "Wir sind dafuer, dass die Politik der verschiedenen Laender so
weit wie moeglich aufeinander abgestimmt wird", sagte der Sprecher des fuer
Drogenfragen zustaendigen Justizministeriums in Den Haag, Victor Holtus.
 
    Die Niederlande tolerieren schon seit langem trotz eines gesetzlichen
Verbotes den Handel mit kleinen Mengen sogenannter weicher Drogen. Wenn es
kuenftig wirklich leichter werde, in Deutschland weiche Drogen zu konsumieren,
werde die Zahl der Drogentouristen in niederlaendischen Grenzstaedten abnehmen. 
dpa os mg 


dpa  04/29/94       (Sperrfrist 29. April 0600 Uhr) Unionspolitiker kritisieren 
	       Haschisch-Urteil 

    Hamburg (dpa) - Politiker von CDU und CSU haben die Entscheidung des
Bundesverfassungsgerichtes, die Konsumenten kleiner Mengen von
Cannabis-Produkten nicht mehr strafrechtlich zu verfolgen, kritisiert. Der
"Bild"-Zeitung (Freitagausgabe) sagte Jugendministerin Angela Merkel (CDU): "Wir
muessen befuerchten, dass Jugendliche Hasch jetzt als erlaubt ansehen. Und was
erlaubt ist, ist fuer viele im Umkehrschluss auch nicht schaedlich."
 
    Berlins regierender Buergermeister, Eberhard Diepgen (CDU), erklaerte: "Das
Urteil darf uns nicht von einer harten Drogenbekaempfung abbringen. Das
Unterscheiden von harten und weichen Drogen erleichtert nur den Einstieg in die
Drogenkarriere."

    Innenstaatssekretaer Eduard Lintner (CSU) sagte: "es ist ein Irrweg,
zwischen weichen und harten Drogen zu unterscheiden. Die Drogentoten sind
Mahnung, im Kampf gegen Rauschgiftkriminalitaet nicht nachzulassen."

    Bayerns Innenminister Guenther Beckstein (CSU) aeusserte sich: "Das Urteil
ist das falsche Signal. Haschisch ist keine weiche, sondern eine hinterlistige
 Droge. Fuer zwei Drittel der Drogentoten war Hasch der Einstieg."

    Dieser Beitrag wurde dpa in redaktioneller Fassung vorab uebermittelt.  dpa
wa  



dpa  05/02/94            Aids-Hilfe begruesst Haschisch-Urteil - Strafrechtler 
                         fuer Freigabe

Berlin - Die Deutsche Aids-Hilfe hat das Haschisch-Urteil des
Bundesverfassungsgerichtes als Meilenstein zu einem ehrlichen Umgang mit Drogen
in Deutschland begruesst. Neben HIV-Infizierten und Aids-Kranken gebe es eine
Reihe von Schwerkranken, deren Leiden mit der medizinischen Vergabe von Cannabis
gelindert werden koenne, teilte die Aids-Hilfe in Berlin mit. Diese
Haschisch-Konsumenten seien bislang in Gefahr gewesen, wegen ihres
Cannabis-Konsums kriminalisiert zu werden.
 
    Die Freigabe aller Drogen hat der Trierer Strafrechtler Heiner Kuehne
gefordert. Im Saarlaendischen Rundfunk schlug Kuehne am Montag vor, Drogen
sollten "wie Alkohol und Nikotin" in Geschaeften erhaeltlich sein. Dadurch
koennten der Rauschgiftmarkt ausgetrocknet und Polizeikraefte entlastet werden.
dpa in cf 



UPse 05/04/94      Tyler seeks extradition of Louisiana man for possessing hemp seed

AUSTIN, Texas, May 4 (UPI) -- A Louisiana judge will decide Thursday whether
to extradite a New Orleans man to Texas to face misdemeanor charges of
possessing sterilized marijuana seeds.
   Kevin Aplin, who organized the Louisiana Cannabis Action Network, said he
bought the seeds at a Houston hemp store called "Legal Marijuana," and that the
seeds were certified as sterile by the U.S. Agriculture Department.
   Aplin, who was arrested at a CAN rally last September in Tyler, called the
case against him "a bad-faith prosecution to prevent me from exercising my First
Amendment rights in the Tyler area in the future."
    He said, "It seems quite shocking that I would be extradited for a
misdemeanor charge, which is usually reserved for bank robbers, murderers and
other felons."
   But Richard Kennedy, an assistant district attorney in Smith County, said the
seeds confiscated from Aplin were quite healthy.
   Kennedy said, "We probably wouldn't care all that much except that they were
making such a big stink that these were infertile seeds. A big chuck of those
seeds were fertile."
   He said about 30 percent of the seeds sprouted when tested by the Texas
Department of Public Safety.
   Aplin, whose group promotes the use of hemp products, was arrested Sept. 30,
1993, at a CAN rally in Tyler, but police did not issue an arrest warrant until
 Jan 12. An April 7 extradition hearing in New Orleans was postponed until May 5
because Texas Gov. Ann Richards had not signed the paperwork.
   Roxanne Evans, a spokewoman for Richards, said the governor signed the
extradition warrant April 15, and that it was forwarded to New Orleans and
officials in Smith County.
   CAN spokeswoman Lisa Hicks said several hundred people will hold a rally in
Aplin's behalf on the courthouse steps in New Orleans Thursday.


dpa  05/04/94        Karlsruher Haschisch-Urteil weiter umstritten

    Hamburg (dpa) - Das Haschisch-Urteil des Karlsruher Verfassungsgerichts
bleibt weiter im Gespraech. Kanzleramtsminister Friedrich Bohl (CDU) haelt die
Diskussion zum Haschisch-Urteil aber fuer gefaehrlich. Das Urteil wuerde
vielerorst als voellige Freigabe des "Hasch"-Konsums ausgelegt. 

    Bohl erklaerte am Mittwoch in Bonn, das Gericht habe das Verbot der Droge
und alle ihm zur Verfuegung vorgelegten Straftatbestaende fuer
 verfassungsgemaess erklaert: Der Eindruck, dass der Gebrauch von Hachisch
freigegeben sei, entbehre jeder Grundlage, betonte Bohl. Er forderte die
Justizminister der Laender auf, schon bald die vom Verfassungsgericht verlangten
bundeseinheitlichen Grundsaetze bei der Strafverfolgung auch geringfuegigen
Missbrauchs von Cannabis-Produkten zu entwickeln. 

    Der hessische Umweltminister Joschka Fischer (Gruene) und andere Prominente
widersprachen unterdessen der Behauptung, Haschisch sei eine Einstiegsdroge. In
der Zeitung "Die Woche" bekannte sich der Gruenenpolitiker zu frueherem
Haschischkonsum und setzte sich dafuer ein, auch "die Sucht mit harten Drogen"
zu entkriminalisieren. 

     Die Schauspielerin Christine Kaufmann sagte, die Behauptung, dass Haschisch
eine Einstiegsdroge sei, lenke "nur vom Drogenproblem ab". Der oesterreichische
Bildhauer Alfred Hrdlicka haelt Hanfkonsum ebenfalls fuer ungefaehrlich: "Ich
habe das geraucht und kann sagen, man wird nur von Alkohol und Nikotin
suechtig."  dpa bo cf 


UPsw 05/04/94        [untitled - 49 Lbs. of Pot Found in Grupo Mazz Truck]

   BROWNSVILLE, Texas, May 4 (UPI) - Members of the Tejano band Grupo Mazz say
they were perfoming in Chicago and knew nothing about 49 pounds of marijuana
found stuffed inside their instruments in a trailer last week.
   "I'm very sorry that this happened," lead singer Joe Lopez said during a news
conference in Brownsville Tuesday. "It has nothing to do with us."
   Federal agents arrested the Tejano band's truckdriver last Thursday after
they seized musical instruments stuffed with marijuana in a trailer owned by
Lopez.
   A drug-sniffing dog at a U.S. Border Patrol checkpoint in Falfurrias found
the marijuana stuffed in guitars and keyboards. "We have no knowledge of what
 happened," said band manager Jimmy Gonzalez. "Our families called us in Chicago
and told us."
   Agents arrested Cruz Moreno Gaitan, 42, of Edinburg, the only person on board
the truck. Gaitan was released Thursday from the Brooks County Jail on $15,000
bond.
   He had worked for the band for about four months, Lopez said. The band
recovered their instruments this week. Police were expected to release their
trailer Wednesday, Gonzalez said.
   Grupo Mazz has recorded three albums in the approximately eight years the
group has been together.


RTw  05/04/94      U.S. SEEKS FREEZING OF THAI POLITICIAN'S ASSETS

    (Eds: Adds details about U.S. accusations beginning in 5th para.)
     BANGKOK, May 4 (Reuter) - The United States has asked Thailand to freeze
the assets of a Thai politician for alleged involvement in a
multi-million-dollar marijuana smuggling operation, a Thai anti-naroctics
offical said on Wednesday.
     Thai authorities were considering the evidence presented by the U.S. Drug
Enforcement Administration (DEA) against opposition Member of Parliament Thanong
Siripreechapong, said the official, who asked not to be identified.
     Thanong's assets in the United States have already been seized. "We can
confirm that this individual's assets in California were seized ... in January,
 1993," A U.S. Embassy official told Reuters.
     A Los Angeles house and a Mercedes-Benz car belonging to Thanong were
seized on the order of a U.S. government prosecutor in San Franciso, according
to a briefing paper issued by the embassy.
     A U.S. Court ruled that the house and car had been obtained with profits
earned from drug smuggling, the paper said.
     The prosecutor's affidavit alleged that Thanong was paid millions of
dollars for tonnes of marijuana he smuggled, or arranged to be smuggled, into
the United States between 1977 and 1987.
     Among the incidents listed in the affidavit were the mid-1986 supplying by
Thanong to American drug runners of 18 tonnes of marijuana that was subsequently
smuggled into the United States, The paper said.
      In another incident he was paid $7 million in cash for two shipments of the
drug successfully smuggled into the United States in 1987, the paper said.
     The U.S. allegations against Thanong were first made three years ago. The
Thai official said the DEA had identified at least two other Thais, one a
politician and the other a policeman, as suspects in the case.
     "It is not easy to catch these suspects because they never carry drugs
themselves," the official said.
     Thanong was not available for comment on Wednesday.
     Veteran politician Narong Wongwan was forced to withdraw as a prime
ministerial nominee in April, 1992, when the United States confirmed it had
refused him a visa because of suspicion he was involved in the drugs trade.
  REUTER


UPwe 05/05/94       Court nixes drug tests for prep athletes

   SAN FRANCISCO, May 5 (UPI) -- A federal appeals court ruled Thursday that an
Oregon public school district's random drug testing program for interscholastic
athletes is unconstitutional.
   The U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals decided unanimously that the district's
random testing program was too invasive to be justified by evidence of increased
drug use by student athletes.
   The ruling reversed Judge Malcolm F. Marsh's order permitting the Vermonia
School District to continue its program of mandatory testing of student athletes
prior to each athletic season and random testing during the season.
   A three-judge panel said that while the prospect of drug-impaired children in
 schools was "tragic," there were no compelling safety or security interests
permitting the district to invade the students' constitutionally protected
privacy rights.
   The court said random drug testing was only permissible in situations
involving "extreme dangers and hazards," such as workers at nuclear power
plants, airline workers and Navy civilian employees with "top- secret"
clearances.
   The program was challenged by James Acton, a 7th grader at Washington Grade
School, who was kept off the school's football team because he refused to submit
to a drug test. Acton and his parents contended that the testing program
violated the student's privacy rights under the Fourth Amendment and the Oregon
Constitution.
    The district had started testing students to deal with an increase in drug
use by students which had caused a substantial rise in disciplinary problems in
its two schools. Athletic coaches at Vermonia High School and Washington Grade
School blamed an increase in the number and severity of injuries to athletes on
marijuana and alcohol abuse.


dpa  05/05/94   Keine Einigung der Laender-Justizminister ueber Umgang mit Karlsruher
              Haschischurteil - Seehofer rechnet mit Loesung "in einiger Zeit" 

Hamburg/Bonn (dpa) - Die Justizminister von Bund und Laendern haben sich auf
einer dreitaegigen Konferenz in Hamburg nicht auf eine einheitliche Behandlung
von Konsumenten geringer Drogenmengen einigen koennen. Waehrend sich der
rheinland-pfaelzische Minister Peter Caesar (FDP) am Donnerstag zum Abschluss
der Tagung dafuer aussprach, die Einnahme geringer Rauschgiftmengen lediglich
mit einem Bussgeld zu belegen, sagte Bayerns Minister Hermann Leeb (CSU): "Die
 Aechtung der Drogen muss in den Vordergrund gestellt werden." Drogen duerften
nicht durch teilweise Nicht-Bestrafung salonfaehig gemacht werden.

    Bundesgesundheitsminister Horst Seehofer (CSU) geht hingegen davon aus, dass
sich die Laender "in einiger Zeit" darauf einigen werden, wann von Verfolgung
und Strafe von Konsumenten geringer Drogenmengen abzusehen ist. Die Richter des
Bundesverfassungsgerichts (BVG) haetten mit ihrem Spruch in der vergangenen
Woche die Laender auf ihre Pflicht hingewiesen, fuer eine einheitliche Praxis zu
sorgen, sagte der Minister in Bonn.

    Derzeit gebe es grosse Unterschiede darin, was als "geringe Menge"
eingestuft wuerde. In Brandenburg sei die Grenze auf 0,5 Gramm festgelegt, in
 Schleswig-Holstein auf 30 Gramm. Versuche zur Vereinheitlichung seien bereits
vor dem BVG-Urteil gestartet worden. Seehofer lehnte es ab, den Laendern
Vorgaben zu machen. Er liess jedoch erkennen, dass er eher zu 0,5 Gramm als zu
dem Wert aus Schleswig-Holstein tendiert. Wissenschaftler bewerten 0,5 Gramm als
"drei Konsumeinheiten" - wobei als eine "Konsumeinheit" die Menge gilt, die
einen Cannabis-Ungewohnten in Rausch versetzt.

    Seehofer daempfte die Erwartungen nach dem "Haschisch-Urteil". "Wer die
Entscheidung als Freigabe interpretiert, taeuscht die Oeffentlichkeit." Das
Gericht habe eindeutig festgestellt: "Es gibt kein Recht auf Rausch." Zudem habe
das BVG einige Kernsaetze der Bundesregierung zur Drogenpolitik bestaetigt. Der
Minister verwies dazu auf einen Beschluss des Nationalen Drogenrats vom 16.
 Dezember 1993.

    Darin seien 16 verschiedene rechtliche Moeglichkeiten aufgelistet worden,
wie zur Wahrung des Prinzips "Hilfe vor Strafe" von Verfolgung und Strafe
abgesehen werden koenne. Das solle auch der Fall sein, wenn es sich nur um sehr
geringe Mengen handele, Dritte nicht gefaehrdet wurden oder das oeffentliche
Interesse an der Strafverfolgung fehle. Die Moeglichkeit zum Absehen von Strafe
sei bereits im September 1992 in das Betaeubungsmittelgesetz eingefuegt worden.

    Nach den Worten von Hamburgs Justizsenator Klaus Hardraht (parteilos) wollen
die Laender jetzt das BVG-Urteil auswerten und auf der Tagung im Herbst nach
einer gemeinsamen Linie suchen.  dpa os cf 


RTna 05/05/94       GERMAN GOVERNMENT DENIES COURT LEGALIZED DRUGS

    BONN, Germany (Reuter) - Chancellor Helmut Kohl's government, running for
re-election on a law and order platform, denied Thursday that a controversial
supreme court ruling had legalized hashish and marijuana use in Germany.
     Kohl's conservative Health Minister, Horst Seehofer, denounced media
headlines and comments by some politicians that said the ruling last week meant
an end to punishment for using the drugs, both made from the cannabis plant.
     "A lot of commentary has been wrong and misleading," Seehofer told a news
conference, called to give the center-right government's view of the court
decision.
     "I think that was irresponsible because it has made some people feel
 insecure, especially parents and teachers."
     Seehofer said the complex ruling last Thursday had largely upheld the
government's stance that cannabis products should remain illegal even if some
first-time offenders were given drugs therapy or no penalty rather than jail.
     But the minister acknowledged the court had told prosecutors not to press
cases against people for small amounts of hashish or marijuana as long as their
consumption did not endanger others or tempt children to take drugs.
     That key part of the ruling prompted a wave of comments saying the court
had broken with Kohl's tough anti-narcotics line, part of a crack-down on crime
the government is pushing ahead of national elections October 16.
     Conservatives lashed out at the ruling, saying it would lead young people
to dismiss anti-drugs messages and become addicts. Seehofer stressed users could
 still face jail terms.
     Government estimates put the number of marijuana and hashish users at up to
eight million in a country of 80 million people.
  REUTER


dpa  05/05/94    Seehofer versucht Erwartungen nach Haschisch-Urteil zu daempfen -
                "Kein Recht auf Rausch" - Laender muessen Richtschnur festlegen 

    Bonn (dpa) - Bundesgesundheitsminister Horst Seehofer (CSU) hat am
Donnerstag versucht, die Erwartungen nach dem "Haschisch-Urteil" des
Bundesverfassungsgerichts zu daempfen. "Wer die Entscheidung als Freigabe
interpretiert, taeuscht die Oeffentlichkeit", sagte der Minister vor
Journalisten in Bonn. Das Gericht habe eindeutig festgestellt: "Es gibt kein
Recht auf Rausch". Im uebrigen habe das Gericht bei der Klarstellung, wann von
 Verfolgung und Strafe abzusehen sei, einige Kernsaetze der Bundesregierung zur
Drogenpolitik bestaetigt.
    Seehofer wies dazu auf einen Beschluss des Nationalen Drogenrats hin, der am
16. Dezember 1993 unter seinem Vorsitz erfolgt war. Darin seien 16 verschiedene
rechtliche Moeglichkeiten aufgelistet worden, wie zur Wahrung des Prinzips
"Hilfe vor Strafe" von der Verfolgung und Strafe abgesehen werden koenne. Dies
solle auch der Fall sein, wenn es sich nur um sehr geringe Mengen handele,
Dritte nicht gefaehrdet wurden oder das oeffentliche Interesse an der
Strafverfolgung fehle. Die Moeglichkeit zum Absehen von Strafe sei bereits im
September 1992 in das Betaeubungsmittelgesetz eingefuegt worden.

     Als wichtig am Karlsruher Richterspruch bezeichnete es der Minister, dass
die Laender auf ihre Pflicht hingewiesen worden seien, fuer eine im wesentlichen
einheitliche Einstellungspraxis zu sorgen. Derzeit gebe es grosse Unterschiede
darin, was als "geringe Menge" eingestuft wuerde. In Brandenburg sei die Grenze
auf 0,5 Gramm festgelegt, in Schleswig-Holstein dagegen wie in den Niederlanden
auf 30 Gramm. Versuche zur Vereinheitlichung seien bereits vor dem BVG-Urteil
gestartet worden.

    Seehofer lehnte es auf Fragen ab, den Laendern Vorgaben zu machen. Er liess
jedoch erkennen, dass er eher zu 0,5 Gramm als zu dem Wert aus
Schleswig-Holstein tendiert. Wissenschaftler bewerten 0,5 Gramm als "drei
Konsumeinheiten" - wobei als eine "Konsumeinheit" die Menge gilt, die einen
 Cannabis-Ungewohnten in Rausch versetzt.  dpa li rm 



RTw  05/06/94      INTERPOL TO HELP EAST EUROPE POLICE FIGHT CRIME

    By Roxana Dascalu
     SINAIA, Romania, May 6 (Reuter) - Interpol pledged on Friday to help police
forces across East Europe and the ex-Soviet Union battle a regionwide
post-communist crime wave, especially drug running.
     "What we are very concerned about is ensuring international cooperation
remains at the right level and standard," the international police
organisation's secretary-general, Raymond Kendall, said after a conference of
police chiefs from 44 European states.
     Interpol's main input would be to help East European police forces update
obsolete communication systems, Kendall told Reuters in an interview in this
 Romanian mountain resort.
     "One of the reasons we need better technical equipment for former East bloc
countries is because they have become very important transit areas for drugs
trafficking," he said.
     Kendall quoted 1993 Interpol figures showing a doubling in cannabis traffic
in Europe, where 400 tonnes of cannabis were seized last year, up from 200
tonnes in 1992.
     An Interpol official also announced plans for a special conference on "the
Balkan connection" for heroin shipped to Europe from old producers in south-west
Asia, Pakistan, Iran and Afghanistan, and now from sources in ex-Soviet
republics.
     "The Balkan route has existed for some years but because of difficulties in
 former Yugoslavia there have been variations in that route in recent years,"
Kendall said.
     The Sinaia conference -- held behind closed doors -- also dealt with new
ways to fight organised crime and racketeering as police forces contend with new
links between criminal gangs in the west and the east of the once-divided
continent.
     "We discussed how we deal with East-West developments in organised crime
and the links between established organised crime people," Kendall said.
     "We think there are contacts between some organised groups in former East
bloc countries and traditional crime groups in the West, but they haven't become
institutionalised yet."
     Interpol had also drafted an action plan to fight East-West traffic in
 stolen cars which, besides drugs and art traffic, was a major issue for European
police forces, Kendall said.
     Police in Eastern Europe's emerging democracies voiced concern over how to
tackle an explosion of crime following the 1989 collapse of Communist regimes
across the region.
     "There has been a sharp rise in crime in Eastern Europe but the absolute
level of crime is much higher in the West than in most East European countries,"
said Swedish national police commissioner Bjorn Eriksson.
     Eriksson said the crime rate was eight times higher in Sweden than in
Russia but that Russia's crime was far more violent, with eight times more
murder cases registered there than in northern Europe.
     The three-day meeting of Interpol's European region was the body's first
 conference in Romania since 1938, made possible by Romania's opening up after
the 1989 anti-communist revolution.
  REUTER


UPn  05/06/94       Thai MP denies drug charges

   BANGKOK, May 6 (UPI) -- A Thai politician implicated in a massive marijuana
smuggling operation has declared his innocence. Thanong Siriprechapong, a hotel
owner and member of parliament, says he will send his lawyer to California to
answer the US drug smuggling charges.


APn  05/06/94      Colombia-Drugs

   BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) -- A top court has legalized possession of small
amounts of cocaine in Colombia, one of the world's top producers of that drug.
   The Constitutional Court on Thursday decided personal use of small amounts of
cocaine, hashish and marijuana is protected by the constitution's guarantees of
individual rights, said Jorge Arango, president of the court.
   The ruling is unlikely to increase the drug trade or consumption, since there
are other laws still on the books against trafficking and heavy drug use, he
said.
    Germany's highest court last month decriminalized the possession of small
amounts of marijuana and hashish, provoking a debate there over whether the use
of harder drugs will increase as a result.
   U.S. Surgeon General Joycelyn Elders started a ruckus last year when she said
the United States should study the idea of legalizing drugs as a way to reduce
crime. President Clinton promptly disagreed.
   Much of the cocaine consumed in the United States comes through Colombia.
   U.S. officials have accused Colombian Prosecutor General Gustavo de Greiff of
coddling drug traffickers by negotiating lenient plea bargains and advocating
the legalization of drugs.
   The squabbling has led the United States to stop sharing evidence with
Colombia on drug cases and to threats to suspend financial aid.
    Colombia sent a letter of protest Monday to the U.S. State Department, saying
it considers recent actions by U.S. officials an "attack on Colombian
authorities and society."
   Asked if Thursday's ruling could draw criticism from Washington, Arango said
the court "does not judge laws based on the opinion of the United States or the
former Soviet Union."
   Although Washington has applauded Colombia for battling the Medellin cocaine
cartel and killing its leader, Pablo Escobar, in December, many U.S. officials
believe Bogota lacks aggression in pursuing leaders of the less violent -- but
more powerful -- Cali cartel.


APs  05/06/94       Barney Trial

   DETROIT (AP) -- Former Detroit Lions star Lem Barney was found innocent of
drunken driving and possession of cocaine and marijuana.
   The Detroit Recorder's Court jury deliberated about 30 minutes Thursday
before aquitting the Hall of Fame cornerback on the three charges.
   Barney, 48, was arrested March 19, 1993, after a traffic accident on a
downtown freeway interchange. Two state troopers investigating the accident said
they found the remains of four marijuana cigarettes on the front seat of his car
and a small envelope containing cocaine under his derby.
    Barney disputed those accounts, saying the drugs couldn't have been on the
front seat because when he was asked to get out of his car he slid across the
front seat and got out the passenger's side. He said the drugs were placed in
the car by hitchhikers he had picked up.
   "Evidence as presented in this trial in this room was not sufficient to
remove all doubt," juror Willie Spewell said.
   Assistant Wayne County Prosecutor Robert Pearl said the state's case was hurt
by Judge Vera Massey Jones' decision not to allow into evidence incriminating
statements Barney allegedly made or a preliminary sobriety test or Barney's
refusal to take further sobriety tests.
   "I had wanted to get that in to cross-examine his story. The judge felt that
was not relevant," Pearl said.
    Outside the courtroom, Barney said his reaction "is one of jubilance,
exceeding joy, relief and complete satisfaction."
   Michigan Consolidated Gas Co. fired Barney from his position as a public
relations specialist after his arrest. He now works as a finance manager at a
car dealership owned by former Lions teammate Mel Farr.


UPse 05/06/94      Colombian president rejects drug ruling

   BOGOTA, May 6 (UPI) -- Colombian President Cesar Gaviria on Friday rejected a
court ruling decriminalizing possession of small amounts of marijuana, cocaine
and heroin, calling it the first step toward creating an "unlivable society."
   The decision by the Constitutional Court, the highest court in the country,
virtually legalizes drug use in Colombia and is seen by critics as a blow to
government efforts at combatting the narcotics trade.
   "This is going to stimulate and increase drug consumption in Colombia,"
Gaviria said in reference to the ruling, passed Thursday by a four-to-five vote
in the court.
   Under the ruling, no one can be tried or sentenced for possessing enough
 cocaine, marijuana, heroin, morphine or other formerly banned substances for
personal use.
   Gaviria, who leaves office in August and will take up the post of Secretary
General of the Organization of American States, said the ruling will make
Colombia "an unlivable society."
   "This ruling affects family tranquility and can increase delinquency and
violence," Gaviria said at a news conference. "Now Colombia cannot carry out
campaigns against drug consumption because that would be absurd (according to
the ruling) and we will become a society that considers drug consumption to be
desirable."
   Gaviria said he was not ruling out the possibility of calling a public
referendum on the issue to decide whether or not Colombians want to legalize
 drug use.
   Pedro Rubiano, president of the Colombian Bishops Conference, also rejected
the ruling.
   "We cannot forget that the function of the state is to seek the common
wellbeing of a society and I ask: does this ruling benefit the common good of
the country?" Rubiano said.
   The Roman Catholic bishop said the ruling "goes against mental health and is
a moral wrong. That is why I do not agree with the ruling. "


circa 05/06/94      [untitled - Ken Kesey Addresses Springfield High School students]

   SPRINGFIELD, Ore. (AP) -- Being the most famous graduate of Springfield High
School doesn't make Ken Kesey everyone's role model.
   A campus talk Thursday by the author of "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest" and
"Sometimes a Great Notion," angered some because it was sprinkled with
 profanities and seemed to endorse marijuana use.
   "We're not likely to invite him back," said Ron Schiessl, the principal.
   A few students walked out, but others defended the 1953 graduate and the
decision to have him speak.
   "He told students to listen to their hearts, follow their dreams and not be
dissuaded by the voices of conformity," said drama teacher Jonathan Siegle.
   The novelist said his comments about marijuana came in response to a question
about musician Kurt Cobain's recent suicide.
   "I told them there are bad drugs and good drugs," he said. "I told them
430,000 people died of cigarette smoke (last year) and asked them how many
people died of marijuana smoke. The answer was none."
   ------


APn  05/06/94       Colombia-Drugs

By ANDREW SELSKY
 Associated Press Writer
   BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) -- In a surprise ruling, a high court has legalized
drug use in Colombia, the world's main supplier of cocaine and site of a drug
war that has killed thousands of people.
   The ruling puts Colombia on a collision course with Washington, which has
already accused the Bogota government of leniency toward drug traffickers and
halted evidence-sharing in drug cases.
    The Constitutional Court ruling late Thursday legalized possession and use of
small amounts of cocaine, marijuana, hashish and hallucinogens. The production,
trafficking and sale of drugs remain illegal.
   The ruling angered President Cesar Gaviria, who called it "absurd."
   But he responded defiantly when asked by reporters about reaction from
Washington. "I think that's irrelevant. It's an internal issue," Gaviria said.
   The Bogota government has grown increasingly defensive about what it
considers Washington's meddling in Colombian affairs, and complains the United
States has not done enough to halt U.S. drug consumption and money laundering.
   After the ruling, Constitutional Court President Carlos Arango told reporters
the court "does not judge laws based on the opinion of the United States."
   Earlier this year, prosecutor-general Gustavo de Greiff drew criticism from
 Washington by negotiating lenient sentences with drug traffickers and advocating
legalization of the entire drug trade.
   "I suffer from a rare illness of the spine which prevents me from bowing
before the powerful," de Greiff told Congress this week.
   De Greiff led the battle against the Medellin cocaine cartel and its leader
Pablo Escobar, who was slain by security forces Dec. 2. But Washington now
accuses him of being lax with the less violent but more powerful Cali cocaine
cartel.
   De Greiff advocates legalization and partial government control over the drug
trade to lower prices and reduce its profitability.
   A handful of other countries, mostly in Europe, have decriminalized use of
certain drugs or don't enforce laws against them.
    "I'm all for it," said Margarita de Perdomo, owner of a dress shop that was
reduced to rubble by a car bomb planted by the drug cartel 13 months ago. Eleven
people were killed and 218 wounded in the attack.
   "It's exactly like Prohibition in the United States. They legalized liquor
and the mobsters got out of the business because it wasn't profitable anymore,"
she said.
   Gaviria, who was elected president after the candidate he served as campaign
manager was assassinated by drug traffickers, firmly opposes legalization.
   He said he would examine whether the constitution should be rewritten to set
limits on drug use and consider holding a national referendum on the issue.



APn  05/08/94     Marijuana Pipe

   NEW ORLEANS (AP) -- The cruise ship's captain heard the thumps and bangs and
thought there was something wrong with his rudder housing.
   There was. It was carrying a pipe filled with marijuana.
   Repair crew divers found a 5-foot-long, 10-inch-wide sealed pipe stuffed with
high-grade pot and bolted to the ship Enchanted Seas, authorities said.
   "It had two brackets," said Robert Galloway, chief investigator for U.S.
Customs in New Orleans. "One end had broken free and the thing was kind of
flopping around in the current created by the drag of the ship's motion."
    The pipe was discovered in the Cayman Islands, and turned over to U.S.
Customs agents when the ship arrived in New Orleans on Saturday night, about 15
hours behind schedule.
   The Enchanted Seas has a regular seven-day run from New Orleans to Cozumel,
Mexico, Jamaica and the Cayman Islands. This week's cruise was one of about six
a year that replaced Jamaica with Key West, Fla.
   Authorities said they didn't know who attached the pipe to the ship, or how
much marijuana the pipe contained.



APn  05/09/94      Colombia-Drugs

By ANDREW SELSKY-- Associated Press Writer--
   BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) -- Pungent smoke wafted through the air as dozens of
youths gathered around a guitarist and ad-libbed a song: "Revolution!
Legalization! Smoke Marijuana!"
   The scene alongside a boulevard in downtown Bogota on Sunday night came three
days after Colombia's Constitutional Court struck down laws against the use and
possession of small amounts of drugs.
   Police walked past the group of about 200 pot smokers earlier in the day and
 did nothing, witnesses said.
   Colombia is the world's biggest supplier of cocaine and the site of a drug
war that has killed thousands of people.
   The Constitutional Court legalized possession and use of small amounts of
cocaine, marijuana, hashish and hallucinogens. The production, trafficking and
sale of drugs remain illegal.
   Although the ruling won't take effect for about two weeks, it might as well
be law already. Police patrolling Bogota's Zona Rosa, or Pink Zone -- a neon-lit
area of bars, discos and casinos frequented by students and young professionals
-- said they would not make arrests if they saw people using drugs.
   "I wouldn't do a thing, unless you were carrying a huge bag of drugs," one
said.
    But this weekend, revelers in the Zona Rosa were swilling beer and other
spirits, and weren't seen using drugs.
   The impromptu smoke-in on Sunday happened in a rougher part of town.
   "It's not bad, man," a 17-year-old, who gave his name only as Johnny and said
he was getting high for the first time, declared with a grin.
   By nightfall, the crowd of 200 dwindled to about 50 diehards, puffing away as
a chill drizzle fell.
   The group jumped up and down in unison, singing: "Smoke marijuana! The police
smoke marijuana. The president smokes marijuana. The Cabinet smokes marijuana.
Your grandmother smokes marijuana. Everyone smokes marijuana!"
   President Cesar Gaviria, surprised and angered at the court's ruling, said he
wants a national referendum on the legalization of drugs. A date has not been
 set.
   In the meantime, Gaviria said, the government will obey the ruling by the
highest court on constitutional issues.
   According to a poll conducted for El Tiempo, Colombia's most widely read
newspaper, most Colombians are against legalization.
   Of the 305 people polled, 69 percent were opposed and 30 percent were in
favor. The survey, which interviewed adults from all economic classes, had a
margin of error of plus or minus 5.8 percent.

End



Compiled by Paul Stanford