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by Diana on 31/03/2015 | Legal & Politics

The cannabis association Pannagh, absolved

The Biscay Provincial Court announced the acquittal of five members of Pannagh, a Basque cannabis users association yesterday, day 30th March 2015, following accusations of drug trafficking. Pannagh members have communicated their extreme happiness about the sentence, which proves them right and reaffirms the legality of their activities. The association however also points out that this sentence can still be appealed by the Supreme Court. Moreover, there is no mention of any compensation for their members following the Bilbao Municipal Police’s break into the Pannagh headquarters back in November 2011.


FREE-PANNAGH-2The Biscay Provincial Court announced the acquittal of five members of Pannagh, a Basque cannabis users association yesterday, day 30th March 2015, following accusations of drug trafficking.

Pannagh members have communicated their extreme happiness about the sentence, which proves them right and reaffirms the legality of their activities. The association however also points out that this sentence can still be appealed by the Supreme Court. Moreover, there is no mention of any compensation for their members following the Bilbao Municipal Police’s break into the Pannagh headquarters back in November 2011.

What happened?

In November 2011, agents of the Drug Unit, in coordination with the Prosecutor’s Office and the Instruction Court No. 6, broke into the Pannagh office. At that time, the association already had 300 members, 120 of whom were medicinal patients with a legal medical certificate, using cannabis as a palliative for their illness.

The Pannagh Board of Directors, led by the tireless and tenacious activist and cannabis defender, Martín Barriuso, immediately rejected any allegation of drug trafficking. In fact, Barriuso was arrested just before he had been invited to explain the clubs model used by Pannagh to the British House of Lords. This was in conjunction with the Global Initiative for Drug Policy Reform, clearly demonstrating his constant fight for decriminalization.

Martín Barriuso, President of Pannagh
Martín Barriuso, President of Pannagh

The trial started three and a half years after the Bilbao Municipal Police, by legal order, closed down the association. The Prosecutor’s Office requested a combined prison sentence of 22 years and fines of almost €2.5 million for the defendants.

Martín Barriuso – President of Pannagh, Igor Gaminde – Treasurer, and the Association Secretary, were accused of “a crime of drugs trafficking with high quantities of notable importance”, the sentence being 4 and a half years each. On top of this, they were accused of “criminal group integration”, which translates into another year and a half of jail-time. Two other people working in harvesting the cannabis while in possession of a legal labour contract were accused of drug trafficking as well, the Prosecutor’s Office asking for a two years prison sentence and a fine of €1,000 each.

Justice for Cannabis

To the relief of all those who fight for decriminalization and total legalization of cannabis, Pannagh members were all acquitted yesterday, 31st of March 2015, setting, without any doubt, a precedent in the history of cannabis associations.

The association members, who have sent an official press release, thank the countless messages of support that they have received throughout the entirety of the trial. (Both documents are in Spanish)

They affirm that this solidarity has helped them a lot, demonstrating to them clearly that Pannagh and its members were not alone in defending cannabis-users rights and in building an alternative model to the currently prohibitive model.

As always, Sensi Seeds fervently supports those who dedicate their lives to restoring the cannabis plant top its rightful place in society and the entire team sends its congratulations to all the members of Pannagh.

Comment Section

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Cannabis N.I.

Great news.

Now they should be compensated for the years of anguish they have suffered.

01/04/2015

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