Wednesday, November 28, 2007

The oncoming freight train...

Still nary a peep out of the local papers about Vilica, Schectman, Hedlund, Paradise Palms, LLC thing. Maybe there's a carefully researched story in the works.

Then there's this story from the Press Democrat - one question is, are people who are affiliated with politicians and local DA's going to get preferential treatment? Can they disobey the law with impunity? Or will they face charges, and punishment?

Mendocino activist facing pot charges
Laura Hamburg, daughter of former congressman, ordered to appear in court next month
By MIKE GENIELLA THE PRESS DEMOCRAT

UKIAH -- Mendocino County community activist Laura Hamburg is facing felony marijuana-related charges following a raid on her rural home, where an estimated 50 pounds of processed pot and about $10,000 in cash were found.

Sheriff's investigators uncovered the marijuana and money in late October in a small house Laura Hamburg occupies at a Hamburg family compound on Boonville Road south of Ukiah.

The property is owned by her father, former Rep. Dan Hamburg, D-Ukiah, a well-known advocate of marijuana use for medicinal purposes. Dan Hamburg and his wife, Carrie, live in a separate residence.

Authorities said Dan Hamburg does not face any charges in connection with his 43-year-old daughter's case. Laura Hamburg told investigators at the time of the Oct. 25 raid that the marijuana was being cultivated, processed and distributed under provisions of the state's medical marijuana law, Proposition 215.

Keith Faulder, a former county prosecutor now in private practice, showed up during the raid after being called by Laura Hamburg, authorities said. Neither Faulder nor Laura Hamburg could be reached for comment Tuesday on the raid, or prosecutors' subsequent decision to file charges.

Dan Hamburg said Tuesday he was aware of last month's raid on his 43-year-old daughter's home, and the felony charges she now faces.

"I hope her case doesn't become the focus instead of the confusion and chaos surrounding the state's medical marijuana laws," Dan Hamburg said.

At the time of the raid, Laura Hamburg was not arrested or booked, as is typical of local medical marijuana-related cases. Sheriff investigators recommended prosecution when the case was turned over for review by the District Attorney's Office.

Deputies had gone to the Hamburg property on an unrelated matter a few days before the raid, and the marijuana growing operation was observed. Deputies later returned after obtaining a search warrant signed by a local Superior Court judge.

District Attorney Meredith Lintott said Tuesday that Laura Hamburg has been formally notified that felony marijuana cultivation, possession for sale and distribution charges have been filed. Laura Hamburg is to appear in Mendocino County Superior Court for arraignment Dec. 11.

Laura Hamburg is widely known in Mendocino County as a political activist, free-lance writer and former editor of a weekly publication called The Bullhorn.

She was the key media representative for another precedent-setting county vote in 2004: passage of the first local initiative in the United States to ban genetically modified organisms.

Large nation agribusinesses pumped in nearly $700,000 in a failed attempt to defeat the county GMO measure. Laura Hamburg was credited with orchestrating a media-savvy local campaign in support of the measure.

Laura Hamburg's pot case is the second high-profile marijuana case to be disclosed locally within the past month.

On Nov. 16, sheriff's deputies seized 39 pounds of dried pot from the Redwood Valley home of Sherylin Young, the budget and finance officer for the District Attorney's Office. Young, hired two years ago by the late District Attorney Norman Vroman, has been placed on leave pending an investigation, according to authorities.


You can reach Staff Writer Mike Geniella at The Press Democrat.
ht: RS

Fred's got more on this at Fred's Humboldt Blog.

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

What's the street value of 50 pounds of processed weed?

Anonymous said...

Rose you are such a worthless cunt!

robin shelley said...

Where is Mike Nemeth? Or, WHO is Mike Nemeth, & what does he have to say about this?

Anonymous said...

Looks like Sterling Nichols is back at 11:17...or is that R.Trent binging on bourbon again?

Rose said...

Did I mention the predatory litigious "Baykeeper?" Didn't think so. I guess my stalker is also into big pot grows. Surprise, surprise.

Anonymous said...

Rose you are a local treasure.

And the word about all this ... stuff that comes to mind is CORRUPTION !

robin shelley said...

Interesting players here, of course: the ex-congressman's (middle-aged) activist daughter & the former county prosecutor. Equally interesting is that Hamburg was busted on Oct. 25 & the story came out in the Press Democrat over a month later on Nov. 28.
A few days before this story came out, we read about Sherilyn Young, a worker at the Mendocino DA's office, being busted &, in another P.D. article, we read a quote by someone named Mike Nemeth complaining that the proposed changes to Mendo Co.'s pot stance would be "unfair" & "an injustice" to people like him who would "not be able to do what we came here to do."
I can't get an answer from reporter Glenda Jackson, P.D. editors or Mike Nemeth himself to verify it, but it seems that Nemeth is a special education counselor for the Mendocino County Office of Education. I'm still waiting to hear back from supervisor John Pinches regarding the identification of Nemeth.
Used to be that people smirked whenever a politician's (young) kid ran afoul of the law but there were parental uprisings if & when someone affiliated with teaching or counseling their children, especially those with intellectual or physical disabilities, engaged in impropriety. But, then, newspapers used to be watchdogs of the government, too.
I feel very old today. Very old.

Anonymous said...

The vast amounts of money made from the marijuana over the past 30years has corrupted Mendocino County (and Humboldt) !

In Humboldt the last curious issue is PVG's pro bono volunteer Deputy DA Shectmean and his involvement in the "Vilica LLC" issue and his indicted buddy. What's going to happen with this one? Who knows. It just keeps getting worse and everyone just stays numb.

This Nemeth guy sounds like a real peach.

Robin, you should also feel very sad.

robin shelley said...

Sad & worried, 11:47. Helpless & frustrated, too. I know what the problem is. I don't know what to do about it.

Rose said...

Legalization/decriminalization seems like the easiest obvious fix - BUT - 215 seemed like a good and compassionate idea, and look at the unimagined repercussions - massive indoor grows, healthy people feigning illness, it's a sham with an ever more powerful criminal element. The question is, would legalization have even worse unimagined repercussions? Or would it put an end to the sham, and the resultant problems?