Renee Boje is asking the Canadian government to accept her as a refugee from the US war on medical marijuana. She was arrested in July 1997 during a bust at cancer patient Todd McCormick’s medical research facility in Bel-Air, California. Medical marijuana is legal in California, but the US federal government chose to ignore state law and raided Todd’s home, pressing charges against everyone there, including Renee Boje.
So far, Canadian judges, right up to the BC Supreme Court, have refused to let Renee remain in Canada. Renee intends to appeal all the way to the Supreme Court of Canada.
On June 15, I was in Ottawa to hand deliver a personal letter along with an object that is very sacred to me, my statue of Shiva, to Canadian Minister of Justice Anne McLellan,” reported Renee.
Renee Boje’s personal letter to the Justice Minister is one of the many submissions in a campaign of signatures, letter writing, and affidavits that will help the minister to decide whether or not Boje can stay in the country. Should the minister decide in favour of Boje, it may set a precedent for Americans seeking political asylum from medical marijuana charges.
Renee Boje’s submission addressed several key issues. The submission makes mention of the widespread sexual abuse of women in US prisons, well documented by the United Nations, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch. The submission also addresses the disproportionate sentence that Boje would receive in the US, and the unlikeliness that she would get a fair trial in her native land.
A fair trial is particularly unlikely because several of the people who were charged the day of the raid, some with arguably greater involvement than Boje, have cut deals in return for testifying against her.
? Renee will be throwing a benefit concert in Vancouver BC at the end of August or early September. Check her website for an update, and to help Renee win her case.
? Renee Boje: (604) 740-7894; email: [email protected]; website: www.reneeboje.com