Archive for Cops & Cannabis

Appeals Court Orders Drug Task Force to Appear in ‘Worthington vs Westnet’

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John Worthington vs Westnet background here.

This letter from the Washington State Court of Appeals, Division Two orders all parties (including the previously non-existent drug task force):

 

So please mark your calendars for July 20, 2016 at 9:00 a.m. for the Oral Arguments on this case.

950 Broadway, Suite 300, Tacoma, Washington

This letter follows the most court appearance by Worthington earlier this month where the task force failed to appear and the judge tried dismissing the case as a result….

 

Worthington was recently on Public Access TV in the Seattle area.  You can see the broadcast here:

Worthington v. WestNET Saga part II – “Why I now fear for my life”

Worthington v. WestNET Saga part II

“Why I now fear for my life.”

When is “WestNET” a government agency liable under the “Open Public Meetings Act”, which is State Law, RCW 42.30, and obligated to full disclosure by the Washington State Public Records Act, RCW 42.56? Or, when is “WestNET” a NON ENTITY that isn’t subject to any Washington State law?

It seems Kitsap County’s Prosecutor, Ione George, claims WestNet is both an agency and a non-entity. In a lawsuit between John Worthington v WestNet for ‘WestNET’s” violation of state law, George claims WestNet is NOT a government agency and is exempt from law because it “doesn’t exist”. But then, according records obtained by John Worthington, it appears that WestNET “is a government agency” when it comes to receiving money, disbursing money, cashing checks and filing records with the Auditors Office and Treasure’s office.

“WestNET” is an acronym for the “West Sound Narcotics Enforcement Team”, which comprises the Sheriffs offices of Kitsap, Bainbridge Island, Bremerton, Mason County, the National Guard Counter Drug Task Force. Naval Criminal Investigative Services and Port Orchard, Poulsbo, Shelton, and Washington State Patrol.

When “WestNet” raided the home of a drug suspect and confiscated this suspect’s property, which included 1500 marijuana plants, they alleged they talked to an informant who stated a guy named Big John was the suspect’s partner. WestNET determined Big John was the 5-5 John Worthington and allegedly called in the DEA to go raid “Big John Worthington.”

Worthington’s soon discovered the DEA guy was actually a federally cross designated Washington State Patrolman who took his grow light and 6 medical marijuana plants. Worthington filed suit in the state court for the acts of a state employee that enabled law enforcement to bypass the state medical marijuana law. That case was removed to federal court where Worthington’s case was dismissed pursuant to CR 12 B 6 because Judge Robart ruled the DEA was immune from state marijuana laws and could take his plants and grow light.

It was during that case Worthington found out the DEA refused the case and asked WestNET to conduct the raid and take pictures for future prosecutorial consideration. Worthington tried in vain to convince Judge Robart that it was actually WestNET that raided him but the task forces were able to convince Judge Robart that Worthington’s documents of the WestNET acts were not authentic.

At that time John Worthington was an advocate for medical marijuana as he was awaiting hip replacement for his badly damage hips. Mr. Worthingtn advocate marijuana was an effective agent to moderate his pain. In his role as an advocate for the medical use of marijuana, John felt marijuana was a suitable alternative to prescription pharmaceuticals for controlling chronic pain that didn’t carry many of the undesirable side effects of the harsher prescription drugs.

This is where Ione George, Kitsap’s prosecutor enters the picture. Rather than admit there was no DEA raid and that WestNET actually raided him, George quarterbacked the effort to hide the truth so that the statute of limitations could expire on future legal claims by Worthington. This leaves Mr. Worthington with trying to find out who it was that decided to use WestNET to conduct a phony DEA raid well after the statute of limitations has expired.

So Mr. Worthington, in trying to find out who ordered the phony DEA raid, filed “public records requests” to see which of the “entities of this Non entity” were involved . Ione George argued that Mr. Worthington’s public records request must be dismissed as it is directed to “WestNet” which is a “non-entity” and not subject to the laws. The trial court and the Washington State Court of Appeals agreed.  Mr. Worthington appealed to the Washington State Supreme Court, which ruled in favor of Mr. Worthington and against this “shell game” being played by Ione George and remanded the case back to Kitsap County Superior court. During the Supreme Court briefing George and the Kitsap County Prosecutor argued WestNET did not conduct seizure forfeiture activity.

On remand the Trial court ruled against Worthington and ruled WestNET was actually Kitsap County and under the umbrella of the Kitsap County Sherrif’s office. Worthington filed a motion to reconsider and submitted numerous court appearances by WestNET and also produced some checks written to WestNET.

The Counsel for WestNET filed a motion acknowledging the sanction able gaff to the Supreme Court regarding WestNET seizure forfeiture activity and the Kitsap County Superior court Judge Melissa Hemstreet ordered a hearing.  Worthington submitted a document trail showing over 300 checks were written to WestNET , then deposited into the WestNET fund. Worthington has also discovered affidavits for search warrants, notice of intents to seize and other judicial and quasi judicial paperwork was also filed in the name of WestNET. Ione George claimed the 12 years of WestNET   seizure activity was the result of scrivener’s errors.

Mr. Worthington is now asking the Kitsap County Superior court, via a declaratory judgment action, to determine if WestNet is a government agency or a Non -Entity.  If the court decides that WestNET is not a legal entity then, they would have to return all the property and cash they confiscated from thousands of people since 1998.

What this means is that now there are serious criminal implications for the acts of WestNET in criminal seizure and forfeiture the last 12 years, which also involve three or more court venues who required defendants to pay them WestNET related fines and fees, which they forwarded on to WestNET after they took their cut. This  case has Rico Act, bank fraud, mail fraud, forgery, criminal impersonation, racketeering, money laundering, official misconduct, obtaining a signature by deception and perjury implications.

What this also means is that public officials may have to go to jail, towns and counties may go broke after they pay back these ill-gotten gains obtained in their role as a non-legal since 1998.

How would you feel if you were in Mr. Worthington’s shoes. If ever there was a whistleblower situation this is it.

 

 

I-502, Secret Meetings, Lobbying and Federal Grants

420leaks Detective

Has legal watchdog John Worthington opened a can of worms on Washington State and the entire I-502 rules making process and legislative bill lobbying?  It looks like most of the groups involved are recipients of federal grant money, and federal law appears to prohibit them from lobbying with that money.  Read the full letter he sent out that contains public records documents to back up his claims…

https://www.scribd.com/doc/261662411/Federal-Grants-for-Lobbying
Also at https://app.box.com/s/86u9qcyihoqj2tnowo8qvr52cyy4rnpc

 

4/13/2015

Executive Office for United States Attorneys
United States Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Room 2242
Washington, DC 20530-0001

Senate Appropriations Committee
Room S128, The Capitol
Washington, DC 20510

House Appropriations Committee
H-305, The Capitol
Washington DC 20515

Watchdog.org
1229 King Street, 3rd floor
Alexandria, Virginia 22314

 

Hello,

In 2012 Washington State passed Initiative 1-502. After the Initiative had passed it was discovered through public access laws in December of2014 that the Washington State Liquor Control board travelled around the State of Washington and held 17 secret meetings with law enforcement and treatment professionals.

Aside from the fact that these acts violated the Washington State Open Public Meetings Act, it is now clear that many of these law enforcement and treatment organizations were receiving federal grants which by law may have prohibited them from lobbying and distributing information.

However, that is what happened here in Washington State on a grand scale, and the U.S. Attorneys for Washington were both aware of these events where many other federal agencies also attended these secret public meetings.

I believe that this situation may be the worst violation of 18 U.S. Code § 1913 -Lobbying with appropriated moneys, in United States history. Numerous grant receiving entities may have violated 18 U.S. Code § 1913, in a desperate attempt to save their respective jobs which were obviously on the line here in Washington State after the passage of l-502, the marijuana legalization initiative.

As many of you know we are a nation of laws that have to be applied evenly and fairly if the public confidence is to be kept intact. While it may be uncomfortable for some in Congress to hold these entities involved accountable to the law, it is in fact a law and it should be upheld regardless of your feelings on the issues of marijuana or drug abuse. These people signed federal grants under a declaration that federal grant monies would not be: used directly or indirectly to pay for any personal service, advertisement, telegram, telephone, letter, printed or written matter, or other device, intended or designed to influence in any manner a Member of Congress, a jurisdiction, or an official of any government, to favor, adopt, or oppose, by vote or otherwise, any legislation, law, ratification, policy, or appropriation, whether before or after the introduction of any bill, measure, or resolution proposing such legislation, law, ratification, policy, or appropriation; of any bill, measure, or resolution proposing such legislation, law, ratification, policy, or appropriation;

 

Now, after meeting with the Washington State Liquor Control Board on 17 different occasions and perhaps more, the following federal grant recipients are subject to the provisions of 18 U.S. Code § 1913:

  • Northwest HIDTA
  • Spokane County Multi-Jurisdictional Drug Task Force
  • LEAD Multi-Jurisdictional Drug Task Force
  • Substance Abuse Prevention of Clark County
  • Washington Association for Substance Abuse violence Prevention
  • Washington State Prevention Enhancement (SPE)

The following federal grant recipient sent employees employed by programs which were receiving federal funding:

  • Washington State Patrol-lAD Division (In charge or Multi-Jurisdictional Drug Task Forces)

The reality is the Washington State Liquor Control Board enabled many federal grant recipients to circumvent their statement of assurances which they signed agreeing not to use federal grant funding for lobbying purposes. I would not at all surprise me if the same thing happened in Colorado, Alaska, or DC.

Please hold these federal grant recipients accountable for their violations of federal laws.

PS.  It has been argued and won in Federal court that state employees under federal grants are subject to the Westfall Act, and subject to the Federal Tort Claims Act as a “loaned state employee” or “Borrowed servant.” They can’t have it both ways. The Loaned employee’s violated 18 U.S. Code § 1913: Please check for their reporting. http://www.ioos.noaa.gov/library/grantsgovsflll.pdf

 

Thank you,

John Worthington
Renton, WA

 

Federal Grants and Cannabis Lobbying by 420leaks

I-502: OPMA, MMJ, Public Records and the “Partnership”

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By John Worthington (background research also by Arthur West, John Novak)

(All exhibit links to box.com are from public record files in PDF format)

One of the main goals of Initiative I-502, as originally written and passed, was allegedly to create a policy change from enforcing marijuana crimes, to properly enforcing property crimes by ‘legalizing” marijuana for persons over 21.

Once the “legalization” initiative passed, the marijuana prohibition stakeholders, AKA the “partnership” went to work to reverse the policy goals outlined in I-502. (Exhibit 1 https://app.box.com/s/rmgcsqu9eknlx5zbp7o9 )

The “partnership” immediately orchestrated numerous secret meetings for I-502 implementation, to further remarket the marijuana prohibition bureaucracy and directed the Washington State Liquor Control Board (WSLCB) take steps to get rid of medical marijuana.

Despite the best efforts to hide these meetings, enough information began to leak out to the marijuana activists, that they were able piece together how the “partnership,” influenced the WSLCB. The documents they obtained show how the “partnership” set out to increase local law enforcement funding and de-incentivize medical marijuana.

These public records obtained by various individuals and advocacy groups also show the subversion began with the secret Association of Washington Cities (AWC – a non-profit made up of corporations and government agencies) and law enforcement meetings with the Washington State Liquor Control Board. The messages and goals for this new Meta organization was clear, get rid of medical marijuana, and divert I-502 revenue to the cities and counties.

According to the notes from these secret Liquor Control Board meetings with local, state and federal agencies set up by the AWC; medical marijuana was no longer needed because the State now had a “legal” marijuana system. The notes also described in detail how the “partnership” wanted medical marijuana to be repealed and also wanted local law enforcement budget increases. The LCB then took this agenda to the editorial boards of newspapers around the state.  (Exhibit 2 https://app.box.com/s/o4cips7jho2mejgho5cs  See also https://app.box.com/s/asxmcnzjp2zxj4fbksxe)

The “partnership” grew to include the Washington State Association of Counties (WSAC),Washington Association of Prosecuting Attorneys (WAPA),Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs (WASPC), Municipal Research and Services Center (MRSC), Washington Association of County Officials (WACO), Washington State Patrol (WSP), Washington State Department of Revenue (DOR), the Washington State Attorney General’s Office (WAAG) and Washington Association For Substance Abuse And Violence Prevention (WASAVP).

The WSLCB arranged to have the legislature “give them cover”, by creating legislation that would allow them a “place at the table,” for medical marijuana discussions. This strategy is outlined in an email from WSLCB board member Chris Marr to the agency director, Rick Garza.
(Exhibit 3 https://app.box.com/s/di9dkswq8v250c5ihs8u )

The email from Marr also introduced the other players in the Meta leadership. These players, knowing or unknowing, were Senator Ann Rivers and I-502 entrepreneur Ezra Eickmeyer.
(Exhibit 4 https://app.box.com/s/y90s7ff4z4sho6s8wxb0 )

Eickmeyer, through Senator Rivers, proceeded to draft SB 5887, which proposed to create a medical marijuana work group, however, the bill did not pass. Senator Rivers and Eickmeyer then acted to get a medical marijuana work group passed “Amendment #224” in the state’s budget bill, SB 5034, to which Senator Jeanne Kohl-Welles objected to because “too many conclusions would be drawn behind closed doors.

Senator Kohl-Welles put out an email on June 2, 2014 addressing concerns about the process.

“It has also has resulted in a high level of concern on the part of many patient and other advocacy groups — including even outright opposition being expressed in rallies and demonstrations.  I am concerned that we would be handing over too much of our responsibility to a regulatory agency.  I also worry that too many conclusions would be drawn behind closed doors, and that the process for creating these rules would circumvent public input.  In many ways, the LCB has a vested interest in diverting business from the medical collectives now operating and into the retail stores when they open early next year.  It is easy to argue the LCB also has a vested interest in wanting to add to its regulatory scope, and bring the medical cannabis industry into its system. This may turn out to be the end result down the road, or it may be determined that another state agency should have that responsibility.  For these and other reasons, I think it best to have the LCB focus on its task at hand, that given to them by the voters in approving I-502 — an initiative that specifically mentions it will have no effect on medical cannabis laws.

(Exhibit 5 https://app.box.com/s/mf2fg3nscjxag7asj79y )

Meanwhile, the rest of the “partnership” worked behind the scenes to create law enforcement funding legislation for the “partnership.” The Washington State Patrol’s Investigative Assistance Division (IAD), was tasked to help “shape” I-502 policy. (Exhibit 6 https://app.box.com/s/eepfhipts7ty6svlvxzp )

The IAD is staffed by officers considered to be loaned state employees to the federal government subject to the Westfall and Federal Tort Claims Act.

Essentially, the federal government also had a hand in I-502 secret rulemaking process through the cross designated members of the WSP and in direct meetings with the DEA and U.S. Attorney’s office.

Soon after the passage of initiative I-502, the broad and powerful “partnership” had managed to convert the policy goals of redirecting law enforcement funding to property crimes to adding local law enforcement funding and getting rid of medical marijuana.

The Washington State Liquor Control Board had arranged its “place at the table”, and the “partnership”, managed to set forth a mechanism to glean law enforcement funding increases and interfere with medical marijuana laws when I-502 appeared to advertise just the opposite.
(Exhibit 7 https://app.box.com/s/uhke9k9wda5tdjsx93cs )

For its part the work group, began its job of eliminating or de-incentivizing medical marijuana under the guise of merging it with recreational marijuana.  (Exhibit 8 https://app.box.com/s/rdkfowosyuwyzodgyzs4 )

The medical marijuana work group had the same open public meetings problem as the I-502 implementation process. They also did not want the public to hear who it was they were working with in private and publically show how they arrived at its decisions.

The Governor’s office, with help from the local U.S. Attorney Jenny Durkan did their part by making sure the public knew that the medical marijuana situation was “untenable”.
(Exhibit 9 https://app.box.com/s/c5m8ogtl8hod59lmewbr )

The urgency for a “robust” regulatory system for marijuana was further ratcheted up with the use of a document referred to as the “Cole Memorandum”, which was actually requested by the LCB, and not a mandate generated by the U.S. Attorney’s office at the request of the Governor’s office.
(Exhibit 10 https://app.box.com/s/o4cips7jho2mejgho5cs )

The following legislative session in 2014, SB 5887 and a new bill from Senator Jeanne Kohl Welles SB 6178, offered two approaches on how to integrate and de-incentivize medical marijuana. Representative Eileen Cody also proposed HB 2149 that same legislative session.

All of the bills contained language which highlighted the recommendations of the medical marijuana working group. The battle of killing medical marijuana in the 2014 legislative session began in earnest.

The legislators had several major hurdles to clear in order to kill medical marijuana. The most formidable of which was the fiscal impacts of the “robust” regulatory system which now included more law enforcement funding not included in the I-502 earmarks.

The fiscal notes to the Ways and Means and House Finance committees, which were put forth at the last second, did not include the actual cost of implementing the ratcheted up “robust” marijuana regulatory scheme.

Furthermore, the small business impact studies were incomplete further misleading the actual financial impact of the medical marijuana killing legislation.

Some legislators refused to consider more law enforcement funding because the initiative claimed to be saving money on law enforcement funding.  (Exhibit 11 https://app.box.com/s/j9aq6xp77d3ut7fdlg1v )

“The argument for the initiative was that it’s going to lower public safety costs, and now they’re saying it’s going to increase public safety costs with absolutely no data. (It’s) troubling,” said House Finance Committee Chairman Reuven Carlyle (D-Seattle) in an interview.

Many marijuana activists claimed victory when all the medical marijuana bills failed to pass out of the 2014 legislative session.

The 2015 legislative session is underway and the legislature should be informed of what the I-502 rule making process has become so they can properly achieve policy goals set forth by the public.

 

Nearly 4000 Documents from the WSLCB released showing illegal meetings

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We finally have the approximately 4000 pages of documents the Washington State Liquor Control board withheld from Arthur West and the public that a judge ordered them to be released.

There were at least 17 illegal WSLCB meetings that took place, maybe more. There also appears to be evidence they knew the rules ahead of time, but broke them anyway. In these meetings, especially with law enforcement, the main push was to repeal the MMJ laws to favor I-502.   Here’s some of the files. Still have thousands to go through… https://app.box.com/s/4ly6mgu8n8sy3efvmm8o