Feds may be watching Santa Cruz City Hall pot distribution to sick

Tuesday September 17, 2002


SANTA CRUZ – The attorney for a Santa Cruz County couple who are planning to distribute medical marijuana on the steps of Santa Cruz City Hall said that he expects federal agents to be at the distribution. 

Valerie and Michael Corral were operating a small marijuana farm for medical marijuana users in Northern Santa Cruz County that was raided on Sept. 5 by federal Drug Enforcement Administration agents. In protest of the raid, the couple and several members of the Santa Cruz City Council are planning to distribute marijuana to the sick at City Hall today. 

The couple's attorney, Ben Rice, said that he expects federal agents will be at the raid but does not believe they will make any arrests. 

“I expect the Feds will be here but just as observers,” Rice said. “They're not going to come in and arrest all of these sick, dying people on the evening news.” 

The Santa Cruz City Council has passed a resolution condemning the raid and several members of the council have indicted they plan to help distribute the marijuana today. 

DEA spokesman Richard Meyer would not comment on the administration's plans. 

“Our policy is not to confirm or deny future plans by our agents,” Meyer said. 

Meyer did say that despite the passage of California's Proposition 211 – the medical marijuana initiative – possession and distribution of the drug remains against federal law. 

“What they're doing is completely illegal,” Meyer said.