Roger Christie has been convicted of no crime. He has been held without bail since July of 2010 on marijuana charges. Clearly he is a political prisoner, considering the APEC security agent who got drunk and murdered a resident of Oahu was released on bail after only a few days.
Mr Christie is a pacifist. No weapons were recovered during the raids on the THC ministry or his residence by the 13 law enforcement agencies that wasted 2 years and millions of dollars to bust him for less than 2 pounds of marijuana.
He was operating openly for nearly ten years from his prominent bay front offices with banners hanging for all to see. He was very vocal and even advertised. The authorities could have walked in there and arrested him for pennies on the dollars they wasted manufacturing this “federal” case.
Guilty or not — like him or not — when the government can put people in prison without a trial or conviction of any crime we should all be concerned.
All but the most dangerous people are entitled to bail and the best defense possible under our constitution. Roger Christie’s rights have been violated. He has no prior criminal convictions, is a honorably discharged military veteran, has never threatened or hurt anyone — yet is being held and cannot even have visitors.
Dec 7th will mark 1 1/2 years in prison without ever having been convicted of any crime –even while accused murders and rapists and all manner of violent and dangerous defendants are released every day.
Roger Christie’s right to a fair trial under the US Constitution has been compromised beyond repair. Being that he is imprisoned before trial, he has been disallowed from the basic right to meet with witnesses and experts, or to raise money for the best possible defense per his rights. The government has jeopardized this case by intentionally and willfully violating Mr. Christie’s constitutional rights to bail, the best defense possible, and his ability to receive a fair trial.
The government is its own worse enemy in this case. They have overstepped the bounds of reason in holding Mr. Christie — in effect binding and gagging him — and in so doing denying any reasonable chance for a fair trial.
What a waste of time, money and resources when we have so many other real problems. They could have walked in and arrested him years ago — but they did not. They manufactured this whole case — shredding the Constitution, destroying lives and spending our dwindling public treasure — over less than 2 pounds of marijuana after a two year investigation using 13 agencies while the drug cartel flooded the streets with hundreds of tons of marijuana.
No wonder we lost the drug war.
But clearly it was never about winning. It has always been about keeping it going so everyone in the drug war business can keep making money. That’s the truth. There is more marijuana on the street today and it’s much cheaper than when Christie was arrested, so what was accomplished? What did we get for those millions besides shredding the Constitution and turning a blind eye to the tons of marijuana pouring into this country every day?
Roger Christie’s arrest and incarceration has not reduced marijuana use or availability on this island or anywhere else.
We need a new plan.