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Date: Fri, 01 Dec 2000 03:02:57 -0800
From: Steve Kubby <steve@kubby.org>
To: undisclosed-recipients:;
Subject: KUB: Auburn Journal: Steve Kubby takes stand in marijuana trial
Message-ID: <B64CC560.9E5B%steve@kubby.org>

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Pubdate: 1 Dec, 2000
Source: Auburn Journal (CA)
Copyright: 2000 The Auburn Journal
Contact: ajournal@foothill.net
Address: 1030 High St., Auburn, CA 95603
Website: Auburn California News | Auburn Journal
Author: Gus Thomson, Journal Staff Writer
Phone: (530) 885-6585
Related: Official Steve Kubby Home Page


He disputes prosecutor's contention that he was a big dealer

By Gus Thomson, Journal Staff Writer

Steve Kubby told jurors Thursday that it was donations for his work as a
medicinal marijuana advocate =AD not from pot sales =AD that produced a steady
flow of money from Oakland and San Francisco cannabis buyers clubs.

Prosecutors point to the money as evidence of potential drug dealing.

On trial with his wife, Michele, on a total of 16 drug charges, Kubby took
the stand for the first time in his own defense before a Placer County
Superior Court jury that has been hearing the case since September. The mos=
serious allegation the couple is accused of is growing marijuana for the
purpose of selling it.

Prosecutors have shown the jury what they allege is a paper trail that
includes cash and money orders from buyer club principals to the Kubbys'
bank accounts.

Asked by defense attorney Tony Serra at the end of Thursday's testimony
whether he had sold marijuana to either club, Kubby answered "never."

Instead, the money that came from the clubs was considered donated funding
for advocacy work, he said. Kubby had played a key roll in the 1996
Proposition 215 campaign to legalize medicinal marijuana use in California.
Two years later, he ran as the Libertarian Party candidate for governor.
Despite Prop. 215's passage, medicinal marijuana was being denied through a
"criminal conspiracy" by district attorneys to rewrite the law, Kubby said.

"I felt I still had a job to do," he said.

Donations began to come in at an increasing rate, Kubby said.

"I started getting more and more money," he said. "It appeared people were
ready to give me money to continue this work and it was a gift."

In January 1999, a law enforcement raid on the Kubby's rented Olympic Valle=
home resulted in the seizure of 265 marijuana plants.

Michele and Steve Kubby contend the grow was for personal, medicinal
purposes. They both had doctor's recommendations for marijuana at the time
of the raid. Steve Kubby has been diagnosed with a rare form of adrenal
cancer. Michele Kubby=8Cs recommendation for cannabis was to treat an
irritable bowel disorder.

During testimony Thursday, Steve Kubby told jurors he initially had
reservations about the use of marijuana to treat a fatal form of cancer he
was diagnosed with in the mid-1970s. But his old college roommate Richard
"Cheech" Marin =AD a comedian formerly known for drug-based humor with the du=
Cheech & Chong =AD convinced him to give it a try in the mid-1980s, he said.

Kubby said he continued to use prescription drugs but the pot helped reduce
his blood pressure. After he secured a steady supply in the late 1980s,
Kubby said he increased the amount he smoked and that helped even further.

Before pot, Kubby said he had found some relief by consuming massive doses
of Vitamin C. He said he was written up by Vitamin C proponent and Nobel
Prize laureate Dr. Linus Pauling in a book on the subject, described as
Patient N. Downing 80,000 milligrams a day resulted in several unpleasant
side effects, Kubby said.

"Initially, I got great results," he said. "But the amount of Vitamin C I
could take went down."

Kubby, 54, also gave the jury a synopsis of his early life and his attempts
to deal with adrenal cancer through standard medical procedures, including
chemotherapy, radiation, drugs and four surgeries.

He told of his first symptoms =AD headaches in college in Southern California
=AD and the progression of the cancer and the resulting decision in 1980 to
close a camp for children he had established a decade earlier in Shasta
County. Earth Camp One played host to several children of celebrities,
including James Coburn and Joan Baez, and was mentioned in National
Geographic and Newsweek, Kubby said.

"I was told I had as little as six months to live," Kubby said. "I took a
break for what I believed was my impending death."

Kubby moved to the Tahoe area in the early 1980s and after five years in th=
cleaning business, established Ski West =AD a magazine that he published for
five years. Kubby said he closed the magazine after another magazine sued
over use of the name, a lawsuit he said would have cost $250,000 to win.
Eventually, he would establish an online outdoor sports web page.

Kubby said marijuana not only curbed his cancer, it saved his life when he
broke his neck in 1991. That incident helped convince Kubby to became a pot

"It was my belief that cannabis prevented my paralysis and my death, and
could benefit people that way too," he said.

Kubby said that after he wrote the book =AD "The Politics of Consciousness" =AD
Men's Wearhouse CEO George Zimmer asked his advice on drug policy reform an=
eventually became a major financial backer of Prop. 215.

"I said the first thing we had to do was get the sick, the disabled and the
elderly off the battlefield," he said.

Thursday morning, Michele Kubby broke down in tears for a second consecutiv=
day, this time during cross-examination by Deputy District Attorney Chris
Cattran. Shown a videotape of the start of the Jan. 19, 1999, search, Kubby
turned away, a handkerchief held to her face.

Cattran used the videotape in an attempt to establish that Kubby had
misrepresented the raid in a fund-raising letter for the couple's legal
defense fund and on the Kubby web page. Both made reference to a search
where officers pointed guns at the Kubbys but no weapons were shown drawn i=
the video.

Michele Kubby said the letter was put together by a professional fund-raise=
and while it contained her signature, she had requested the reference to
guns being drawn be taken out. The web page was built by her husband, she

Asked about the page's use of an "s" followed by a "/" symbol =AD which
Cattran said can represent a signature =AD Michele Kubby replied "I don't kno=
what that means."

The trial continues Tuesday with Steve Kubby expected to resume his