Couple Prepared To Go To Prison For Their Beliefs
An Australian couple supplied medicinal marijuana to the chronically ill, now face prison time. They are taking their case to a jury, and are prepared to go to prison for doing the right thing.
Matthew and Elizabeth Pallett from Melbourne, provided medical marijuana to people with multiple sclerosis, cancer, epilepsy, fibromyalgia and Crohn’s disease. They are now facing charges of cultivation, possession and trafficking marijuana.
Five years ago Mathew and Elizabeth established a “compassion club” where they began openly providing marijuana tinctures, edibles and butter to regular clients who had a medical necessity.
Police Raided their Carrum Downs home in May. The police stated they seized about five kilograms of marijuana and charges were then filed.
Mr Pallett stated to the Melbourne Magistrates Court that he and his wife wanted their cases judged by a County Court jury. They will be representing themselves. They cannot afford a lawyer and Victoria Legal Aid decided not to represent them at trial.
Why the Palletts decided on a jury trial “The people have the right to say that a law is not valid by just refusing to uphold it”.
The Pallets, are both on disability pensions, they both use cannabis to medicate their health problems. Even though they have to represent themselves at trial, they remain confident they can win.
“I don’t think a jury of people here in Melbourne would consider that compassion is a crime,” Mr Pallett said.”Compassion is what we should be doing, not … turning people into criminals for.”
The couple said they have witnesses to provide evidence. Some of those witnesses are relatives of past clients who found pain relief when using the Palletts’ provided marijuana, but had died in the time between their arrest and the trial. The couple stated they were “absolutely” prepared to go to prison in support of their beliefs.
“I know we’ve done nothing wrong. All we’ve done is helped people who needed help. That’s not a crime,” Mr Pallett said.
The prosecution says it doesn’t matter if the Palletts have good intentions. The allegation is the couple cultivated a narcotic plant, and not why they did it, prosecutor Andrew Moore said in his opening statement on Thursday.