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    May 2018
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Mayor Kim Supports Medical Use of Marijuana

In a letter dated February 28, 2018, Hawai‘i County Mayor wrote to long time Marijuana Activist Roger Christie, that he does support the medical use of marijuana and further studies of medical use.

Mayor Kim wrote:

Dear Mr. Christie:

I am writing regarding your request for a letter of support regarding cannabis in Hawai‘i County.

You emailed my office on February 21, 2018 regarding adolescents and cannabis, among other things.

Long ago I explained to you my feelings about marijuana. I do support the medical use of marijuana and further studies of medical use. I do not support the use of marijuana by our youth.

Thank you for taking the time to write to me.

Aloha,

Harry Kim, Mayor

Commentary – If You Are Reading This Letter… I Am Either in Jail or On My Way

Commentary:

If you are reading this letter… I am either in jail or on my way. Please read…

On June 18, 2014 I was sentenced as the last defendant in the Roger Christie THC Ministry Federal conspiracy case also known as the “Green 14”. Before my guilty plea to a minor distribution charge I was the only remaining defendant that had refused to make a deal. I was waiting to go to trial with Roger when he finally decided to make a deal to plead to conspiracy with time served and allowing for his RFRA motion to be appealed in the 9th circuit.

Until that day in June I had been on “pre-trial” release, a supervised release on a $25,000 signature bond. For the previous 4 years since my arrest. Conditions set forth banned me from using my State certified Medical Marijuana that I used to treat my debilitating condition from a rare tropical disease called esenophilic meningitis a.k.a. “rat lung worm” a devastating infection of nematodes that cross the blood-brain barrier and infected my head/brain. I have suffered nerve damage, brain damage, neuropathy and chronic pain and stiffness 24/7.

I was subjected to over 100 drug tests over the last four year with ZERO positive results. All the while I was allowed to use the dangerous narcotic Percoet, Xanax and Nortriptiline. I had tried every other possible medication the list too long. My disease is know to be so heinous because there is NO cure or treatment available. Cannabis helped tremendously but the Feds said no. I suffered for 4 years.

I motioned the court to take a legal substitute Marinol but I was initially denied and offered to take another THC-like medication that would not test positive as THC. The drug test cannot differentiate between the two, was the US attorney Kuwahara’s contention. Well is was all a ruse. That medication was not available in Hawaii, the cost was $1,400-$1,700 a month, my insurance would NOT cover it AND pharmacies would not order such an expensive medication without payment up front.

This left me zero choice but Marinol. Thy prosecution said I could get Cesamet at Walgreens, this was patently untrue. I was denied. My inept lawyer, whom I fired later for “not zealously defending” me (Quote from Judge Kobiashi at hearing)

I suffered greatly those 4 years. Fearful that a civil disobedience by myself to take the only non-toxic, dangerous medicine because I was facing a 5 year mandatory minimum in Federal prison. I decided to readdress the issue after I had the charges reduced or was acquitted at trial.

I forced the US attorney to drop the conspiracy charges that I WAS NOT PART OF and they stipulated, in writing that I was not. My sentencing guidelines put me at 0-6 months with -3 years possible probation. I was sentenced to ZERO time, given 2 years probation with the possibility it be done in one if I was all good. In the sentencing report it stated I could not posses or use marijuana or any other form of THC UNLESS… get this, unless approved by my probation officer! Wow I thought, finally relief at the end of this nightmare tunnel.

Upon leaving the courtroom the supervisor/deputy probation officer told me that there was NO WAY I would be allowed to use my MMJ or LEGAL Marinol. He said “they never have, never will.” I stated that it was up to the probation officer on the Big Island, my home. He said that there was NO WAY the Big Island PO would allow it…they never have and never will.

I was at an impasse…I could no longer continue to digest Percocet and Ibuprofen daily, it has put me in great danger and risk because of their inherent toxicity on the liver, kidneys and stomach. I was no longer facing a minimum 5 year sentence only 0-6 months. Judge Kobayashi told me that she gave me 2 years probation instead of 1 “just in case I had any ‘bumps’ along the way”. Well here is the first bump.

I received another prescription for Marinol from my doctor and had it filled (paid cash because Medicaid would not pay) I took my legally prescribed medication. I found relief… FINALLY!
The next day I had to report to my PO for the first time oat home on the Big Island. Officer Jenkins informed me that he would not honor my legal MMJ blue card OR allow me my legal Marinol (too late for that) I tested positive for THC. He was not happy. I told him of my legal script, he cared less. He told me if the test came back confirmed as THC he would revoke my probation!

Nine days later the UA returned from the lab Positive for THC with no differentiation between marijuana and Marinol. My PO said he was going to revoke me. I told him thank you and shook his hand. Today the 8th of June I return to the testing facility for another UA. I have continued o take my Marinol. In fact, as it turned out the insurance DID approve my Marinol. I went to Wal-Mart and picked up a second bottle that was twice the potency/milligrams as the first. Today I will test positive again for my legal script… again.

I have had multiple Constitutional violations committed against me PLUS a few ADA violations since I am disabled and receive Federal SSI benefits. I cannot wait to be on the other side of a revocation hearing waiting for the machine to spit me out all over again. I have prepared a brief, pro se and am going to file suit against the feds, the probation department, my PO, his supervisor and the deputy chief of probation for the district of Hawaii.

I was denied due process on many levels, I have been discriminated, the decision to not allow me to use medicine that others ARE allowed to use (including other federal probationers…(see U.S. V.Steele Smith ). Also, this treatment is tantamount to cruel and unusual punishment. I will no longer lay down and suffer, I will stand up for my rights and the rights of all others who face similar treatment by the Federal government.

Please help me in any ,and all ways possible. I need financial assistance with costs ensured with filing fees, transportation to and from Honolulu, as much media and press as possible including blogs, posts, internet news and social media.

Aaron Zeeman

Aaron Zeeman

Thank you and Aloha, Aaron Zeeman (aaronzeeman@yahoo.com)

Roger Christie to Plead Guilty to Distribution of Marijuana on Friday

Roger Christie

Roger Christie in front of the former THC Ministry

“…Roger Christie promoted the religious use of marijuana for years at The Hawaii Cannabis Ministry in Hilo.  He was arrested in July 2010 and his operation was shut down.  He has been in custody for more than three years.

Christie’s attorney says his client will enter a guilty plea to distribution of marijuana because he was factually doing that.  However, Christie strongly believes his actions were protected by the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

In the plea agreement, Christie reserves the right to appeal to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals…”

 

Big Island Man Files Writ of Habeas Corpus on Behalf of Rev. Roger Christie

A member of the The Hawaii Cannabis (THC) Ministry in Hilo has filed a writ of habeas corpus on behalf of his pastor, Rev. Roger Christie, who has been held by the federal government as a pre-trial detainee for over 3 years.

Roger Christie

Roger Christie in front of the former THC Ministry

Mike Ruggles, 56, a resident of Mountain View on the Big Island, filed the petition with the United States District Court in Honolulu on July 23, 2013.

Rev. Christie was arrested by federal authorities on July 8, 2010, charged with distributing marijuana to members of his congregation.He has been held without bail at the Honolulu Federal Detention Center for over 36 months.

“Roger was a pillar of the community and he is sorely missed at this time,” said Ruggles. “Since Roger has been gone, meth use and violent crime has gotten worse, not better. Roger’s influence on the community was more effective than 50 cops on the street.”

Christie founded his Cannabis Ministry in the early 2000s. The Ministry operated openly on the second floor of the historic Moses building in downtown Hilo, right across from Hilo Bay.

Federal authorities conducted an extensive investigation of the Ministry beginning in 2008.

Rev. Christie will argue for his right to base his defense on the Religious Freedom Restoration Act at a hearing scheduled for July 29th at 10:30 a.m. and July 30 at 10:00 a.m. in the Honolulu Federal Building Courtroom of U.S. District Judge Kobayashi.

“Our country was founded on religious freedom,” said Ruggles. “The government wants to shut down his religion. Whose religion is next?”

 

Commentary on Roger Christie Resolutions: “An Injustice in Lawmaking, a Manipulation of Process, and a Deliberate Disregard for Fellow Committee Members”

Guest Commentary:

Roger Christie Bail Denial
I witnessed an injustice in lawmaking, a manipulation of process, and a deliberate disregard for fellow committee members vote on the Roger Christie resolutions from the Senate Judiciary Committee Chair, Sen. Clayton Hee.

Here is a short video I put together to explain what happened.

[vimeo 64209566 w=500 h=281]

Hee kills Christie Resolution from Jonas William on Vimeo.

Feel free to share it with others.

Jonas William

Senator Ruderman and Senator Espero Meet With Detainee Roger Christie at Federal Detention Center

At 8:00am today, Senator Russell Ruderman, joined by Senator Will Espero, met with federal detainee Roger Christie at the Federal Detention Center (FDC) in Honolulu to discuss his incarceration, health, and rights as a United States citizen under the United States Constitution. Mr. Christie has been held now for almost three years without a bail hearing or a trial.

Senator Espero and Ruderman at the Federal Detention Center in Honolulu

Senator Espero and Ruderman at the Federal Detention Center in Honolulu

After weeks of requests and assurances, the U.S. Attorney’s Office granted permission for Senator Ruderman, representing Christie’s district, and Senator Espero, Chair of the Senate Committee on Public Safety, Intergovernmental, and Military Affairs, to visit Mr. Christie at the FDC in Honolulu with restrictions, including that no media shall be present. Mr. Christie has not been allowed to meet with media despite requests from National Geographic, Newsweek and Honolulu Civil Beat among many others.

In June of 2010, Mr. Christie, along with twelve co-defendants, was charged with manufacture, possession with intent to sell marijuana. The other defendants have been released on bail pending trial. Prior to the detention hearing, Mr. Christie was interviewed by the Office of Pretrial Services and on July 13, 2010, Pretrial Services issued a report that recommended that Mr. Christie be released on an unsecured bond of $50,000.

In the almost three years since that recommendation, all efforts to have Mr. Christie released pending trial or have access to a speedy trial have been denied. Visitations have been severely limited by the FDC including those by his wife Share Christie, who has not been allowed to see her husband for almost a year. In recent weeks, additional charges have been added, and his trial postponed once again.

While the charges against Mr. Christie are federal in nature, holding a defendant without bail, while denying his/her constitutional right to a speedy trial is virtually unheard of in our state. Even those accused of serious crimes such as large-scale distribution of ice, violent criminals, rapists, and murderers are routinely released on bail pending trial.

To urge President Obama and the Federal Government to release Mr. Christie pending a hearing, Senator Ruderman authored two measures – Senate Concurrent Resolution 75 and Senate Resolution 42 – both of these measures have been passed by the Senate Committee on Public Safety, Intergovernmental, and Military Affairs.

Mr. Christie explained that he is content with the position he is in because he feels he is doing the right thing and looks forward to proving his innocence in a court of law, saying, “Dignity trumps longevity.”

Senator Ruderman and Senator Espero expressed their concern for Mr. Christie, the violation of his Constitutional rights, and the implications for all persons facing non-violent federal charges and deemed dangerous by the federal judicial system, such has been the case for Mr. Christie since July 2010.

Senator Ruderman said, “I have known Roger for over 25 years. He is one of the most peaceful persons I know. To anyone who knows him, the claim that he is a danger to the community is absurd.”

Senator Espero commented. “This visit was very enlightening. I still feel that Mr. Christie should be released pending a trial.”

Senator Ruderman and Senator Espero would like to graciously thank FDC Warden David Shinn, Asst. Warden Tom Blumm, Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Kawahara, and Public Defender Thomas Otake, for their assistance and for the opportunity to meet with Roger Christie.

 

Pictures From the Wedding Roger Christie Officiated the Day Before He Got Busted

Well I’m sure most folks know about Roger Christie and his run in with the law.

It’s fairly easy to become an ordained minister here in Hawaii and he was ordained to marry folks by the State apparently.

Here is a video of a wedding ceremony he performed the day he got arrested for his marijuana bust that he is currently in prison for:

[youtube=http://youtu.be/0f5bhBj5Lw8]

Bad News for Roger Christie… Mainland Minister of His Church Sent to Prison on Drug Charges

This can’t be good news for Roger Christie who is currently in jail waiting for his trial on his drug charges.

Roger Christie

Roger Christie in front of the now busted THC Ministry

Before being sentenced to prison Wednesday on a felony drug conviction, Robert Henry told a Franklin County judge that he is being persecuted for his religious beliefs…

Henry said he joined The Hawaii Cannabis Ministry in 2008, and planned to travel to Hawaii and study under the Rev. Roger Christie, the church’s founder. According to the church’s website, www.thc-ministry.org, followers believe the illegal plant is an essential religious sacrament…

…According to the site, Christie and 13 other church members were arrested July 8, 2010 on federal drug charges. They have been nicknamed the “Green 14.” Christie was the only member of the group denied bond and remains incarcerated. Their trial is expected to begin in early July.

When his sentencing was concluded, Henry made some final remarks to the judge.

“In closing, your honor, I would ask that if I made you mad or angry with my opinions, that you not hold it against any other here,” he said.

Walker interrupted Henry, and pointed out that he had not given him as strict a penalty as the law allows. He said that while everyone is entitled to an opinion, the law cannot be disobeyed.

As sheriff’s deputies were leading him out of the courtroom, Henry said to Walker that his religion requires him to break the law.

“OK, well keep practicing it,” the judge said.

“I’m going to,” Henry replied.

You just have to love that exchange between the Judge and Henry at the end there.

Full article here: Minister Sent to Prison on Drug Charges

Roger Christie Speaks Out on High Times Article

I mentioned the other day that Allen St. Pierre, the Executive Director of NORML, slammed Roger Christie in an article in the recent High Times Magazine.

Here is Roger Christie’s response to that article according to Cannabis Culture:

1.) Why I live and breathe and work and fight for sacramental Cannabis is because it’s MY TRUTH. My truth leads me to my actions in this big and important part of my life. I knew the risk of being public with my sacramental use. I remain steadfast in my personal and professional spiritual/religious convictions.

2.) a. I’m not a “self-styled Minister”, I was trained and lived as a Practitioner in Religious Science for six years. Then I joined the Religion of Jesus Church in Hawai’i, a church that has multiple stipulations from Hawaii State courts as being “bona fide” where its members were “sincere in their use of marijuana as a sacrament”. Hawaii v. Shields, and Hawaii v. Adler, etc.

b. After being a member of the Religion of Jesus Church for seven years I was ordained as a Minister to further the mission and the teachings. I created the THC Ministry as a non-demoninational organization according to my evolving personal spirituality.

c. My ordainment was legal enough for the State of Hawaii to license me for life specifically as a “Cannabis sacrament” Minister to perform the marriage ceremony. It’s the first such designation in the USA that I’m aware of, and that state recognition effectively legitimized my ordainment and my mission.

d. As a Minister I perform legal weddings, conduct baptisms, funerals, and offer counseling and communion fellowship with members. Try performing a funeral for three hundred people in a large family ohana in Hawai’i and then tell me you’re not a real Minister.

3.) a. I sought recognition (Declaratory Relief and Permanent Injunction) in the US Federal Courts in 2004 when I told them in writing that I operated a therapeutic Cannabis Ministry requiring large amounts of Cannabis in order to make the holy anointing oil and tinctures, etc. I didn’t ask their permission, as the Creator gave me the right to do this. I asked that they respect my Ministry rights according to the letter and spirit of the Constitution and the law. They let me operate for over four happy years after that constructive notice with zero investigation on their part.

b. I feel I’m in a better position now because I’m not asking for anything from the prohibitionist US government except a fair trial with a jury of my peers to decide if I’m guilty or innocent of the charges against me beyond a reasonable doubt. Could I win? Of course I could! What would that look like? Immunity from prosecution to operate the THC Ministry.

I’m putting my faith and my life in the hands of the jury system of the USA to nullify the charges against me. See www.fija.org for details.

4.) I only know of one other person in jail in the THC Ministry. This member of ours lost his case because the Judge refused to hear his religious defense. The truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth was NOT allowed to be heard in that court.

All the best to everyone!
Roger Christie, Founder
THC Ministry

You can see the full article here: Imprisoned Religious Cannabis Minister Roger Christie Responds to NORML.

Executive Director of NORML Slams Roger Christie in High Times Magazine

I was just pointed to this article in High Times magazine where Allen St. Pierre, the executive director of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML),  slammed Roger Christie and his so called “Cannabis Church”.

Christie, a self-styled “minister” from Hawaii, founded the THC Ministry in the 1990s based on the incorrect assumption that citizens organized as a church or religious organization who employ cannabis as a sacrament are exempt from criminal prosecution under the Controlled Substances Act of 1970…

Please don’t hate on me for reporting this… as this is news to me as well.

Inside Roger Christie’s THC Ministry

I just came across Roger Christie’s youtube channel for his THC Ministry that was recently busted.  The clips are really kind of strange looking back on them now.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t1mPLxj5b4A]

In this video, he basically explains the whole business and the Holy Anointing Oil.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Bh_uITXAoo]

Roger Christie… Drug Dealer or Religious Saviour… The Evidence Against Him

I have heard so many rumors and things about the Roger Christie marijuana drug bust that I just want folks to know what is really going on and not what is being reported in the papers from what I know as the “average joe blow”.

I’m tired of holding onto the actual transcripts as to why Roger Christie of the THC Ministry should be held in Federal Prison without bail  so here it is… (why the newspapers don’t release this information is beyond me)

http://www.wirtshafter.com/cases/Christie%20et%20al/Christie%20Memorandum%20in%20Opposition.pdf

As you can see…. Mr. Christie is up a creek without a paddle.

Please don’t hate on me for releasing this…!

More Big Island Pot Busts Happened Today

Roger Christie got busted again along with 13 others for growing marijuana according to Hawaii News Now.

The thing I’m curious about… is why are they shipping some of the arrested folks off to Oahu?

Federal drug agents are rounding up suspects in what appears to be a major marijuana bust on the east side of the Big Island. At least 13 have been arrested so far. Several of the suspects were transported on a US Coast Guard C-130 to Oahu

More Here: DEA Rounding up suspects in Big Island Marijuana Bust

Big Island Resident Roger Christie Establishing Cannabis Churches in Colorado

It didn’t take long for the Rev. Roger Christie, founder of the Hawaii Cannabis Ministry, to move forward with his plan to establish a cannabis church in Colorado Springs.

Christie, who lives in Hawaii, was in the city Tuesday (June 22) to give a lecture on the spiritual implications of marijuana and to check the temperature of locals about founding a cannabis church. Only seven people showed up for his lecture. But while giving two more talks in Denver last week, Christie said, a person stepped forward offering to lead the Colorado Springs cannabis church…

Full article: Cannabis church plant in the Springs by September, leader says

Roger Christie at the Punatic Cyber Cafe… Talking About the New Marijuana Laws… VIDEO

Hawaii Cannabis Ministry founder and director summarizes the new law that went into effect last November. This new law allows private citizens to grow up to 24 plants and to have up to 24 ounces in their possession (at home for private use).

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AXWXHzT_03o&hl=en&fs=1]