December 7th, 2012
December 7 2012
Apologies for the long delay since the last blog – it has been a time of struggle and uncertainty for everyone at the Daktory.
First of all, the Daktory is now closed. The effort to reopen part time did not generate enough interest to make it worthwhile. So a peaceful, friendly cannabis club that was enjoyed by thousands of people for three and a half years has been shut down by the police – no doubt acting under orders from Peter Dunne, the sinister and corrupt anti-cannabis United Future MP, or someone who looks just like him.
Since Dakta Green’s arrest in June he has had 14 visits from the police at the Daktory, doing “bail checks” – their term for harassment. The cops have also stopped Dakta Green in his car and also other people who have been seen leaving the Daktory, checking their driver’s licenses, registration, warrants of fitness etc. Traffic stop they call it. Harassment is an ugly word. They have made it clear that they want the Daktory to stay closed and Dakta Green to leave town.
The Daktory still gets visitors from out of town and out of the country. It is sad to have to turn them away – so if you are reading this and wanted to visit, go visit to your Member of Parliament or the equivalent in your country instead, and tell them to legalise cannabis and end the drug war. To purchase cannabis, see your local gang – they are still in business and not bothered by the police.
While the Daktory cannot continue in its present location, the concept behind it is not going to die. Plans are being made to re-establish the Daktory in a new location with a new format – watch this space for further details.
In the meantime, cannabis prohibition is slowly but surely crumbling worldwide, as a growing number of world leaders and celebrities speak out against it – the president of Colombia being one of the latest. Voters in the US states of Colorado and Washington have legalised cannabis for adults – it remains to be seen what hypocrite pothead Barack Obama will do about it. Polls * have shown that a majority of Americans now support legalising cannabis.
New Zealand remains stuck in the dark ages of prohibition. The government steadfastly ignores any attempt to even discuss an alternative to the current regime. But inevitably prohibition will fall like the Berlin wall – a corrupt and broken system cannot last forever.
October 24th, 2012
24 October 2012
Billy McKee is due to be sentenced on October 30 in Palmerston North on 5 charges of supplying and cultivating cannabis, after being entrapped by an undercover cop. He was found guilty by a jury who didn’t spend much time thinking about it.
Billy could face a prison sentence, home detention, or if he is really lucky, he could be convicted and discharged.
Supporters will be gathering in Palmerston North the day before Billy is sentenced. There will be an all night vigil in front of the courthouse the night before sentencing.
The vigil could well help Billy. Last year daktavists held a vigil for Peter Davy in Timaru – Peter is a medical cannabis user and grower who cares for his partner, who has advanced multiple sclerosis. She also uses medicinal cannabis. When Peter pleaded guilty to cultivation, the judge told him to prepare for prison and only reluctantly granted him bail prior to sentencing.
With protests going on at courts around the country, and the Timaru court filled with Peter’s supporters, the judge backed down from his hard line stance and Peter stayed out of prison.
Billy McKee was convicted because he wanted to help someone who – he thought – was suffering: an undercover cop who pretended to have severe migraines. Here’s hoping he gets severe migraines for real.
The more people Billy can get at his sentencing, the better. The plan is to meet in front of Palmerston North High Court at 4 pm on Monday, October 29 – the day before Billy’s sentencing. At 4.20 pm civil disobedience will take place, followed by an all-night candlelit vigil occupying the street in front of the court, so people will be there when the doors open at 9 am.
Following is a message from Billy:
“A big thank you for the support that I and others have received and continue to receive from a large group of determined activists. Many people freely gave help – still do – especially the core group who came down for earlier hearings and the three day trial. What an effort, standing ovation for them all.
That was a huge commitment being there in the freezing cold. What an inspiration to keep up the battle especially when I was under huge pressure to plead guilty and I nearly weakened a few times.
This support has enabled us to challenge the cannabis laws. The court battle is not over yet. I, at this stage, intend to appeal any sentence.
I am sure if we could challenge more cases and educate the jury about their rights as citizens to return not guilty verdicts in victimless cannabis cases (nullification) where there is clearly an injustice with the penalty far exceeding any possible harm from the crime. They cannot be penalised for this act of nullification, then we can force law changes.
The numbers and sympathy are on our side, the difficulty is in educating the jury. We tried flyers to the jury as they came in and it was a bit successful but we need to do better on that.
Another tactic that is worth considering is to defend yourself. This is risky but in my case worth it as I could not afford a lawyer anyway. They were hard to deal with and would not mention jury nullification.
By saying you will defend yourself the court appoints you a lawyer to help. (NB: at the discretion of the Judge) If anyone wants any advice on the above I would be happy to help.
This tactic is a bit of a gamble and a bit stressful but this is a war and we are suffering casualties with many victims losing a lot of money in the legal process as well as imprisonment and a career and travel halt.
Stephen McIntyre, a director for Green Cross in Auckland, is just one of many people in NZ who commit suicide which I firmly believe would not have happened had he been using cannabis.
I know this from when I have stopped using cannabis (ran out or trying to quit) and become very depressed and aggressive but as soon as I had a smoke I was a happy man again.
We will get law changes if we can keep up the pressure. It is happening worldwide so it will happen here but when is the question. Unity between us will bring that date forward. Look after your mates; support whoever is currently in the front line of this uneven battle.
A big thank you to you all. We have managed to get a lot of supportive media coverage because of our main supporters and all the others who have helped out whenever they could. We had donations from a lot of kind and generous people that have made it possible to fund a publicity campaign that will hopefully get a large crowd out.
Kia kaha my brothers and sisters of the herb.
Overgrow our needs.”
Billy McKee. Director for GreenCross.
Follow Billy on Facebook for updates.
October 21st, 2012
21 October 2012
Who needs space – for a party, rehearsal, course, seminar, meeting place, film set – anything else you can think of?
The Daktory offers plenty of space for all kinds of events. There is a projector and screen for showing films, a good sound system, recreational facilities, plenty of room and plenty of seating. The furniture can be arranged to suit whatever you want to do. Catering can be DIY.
The Daktory is available for hire on very reasonable terms. Give us a call on (09) 948 1049 to talk about your event and what you need. We want to help you make it a success!
Just dropping by for a visit….
There has been one visit from the cops in the past week – Sergeant Winthrop stopped by on his own, without his usual backup. On Sunday, while the club was open, 3 cop cars drove by very slowly, but did not stop to visit. One of the cop cars stopped close to the building, turned the flashing lights on for about 30 seconds, sat there a little longer, then drove slowly away.
What does that mean? A new form of surveillance? Testing the lights? Just felt like flashing? Maybe the Cyber Crime Unit will tell us – they read these blogs, because trying to legalise cannabis is a danger to society, or something.
The current government’s hostility to cannabis is no doubt part of John Key’s desperate sucking up to the USA. In a few weeks, 3 American states – Colorado, Oregon and Washington – will have binding referendums on legalising cannabis for adults. There is a good chance they will pass in at least 2 states. Then things could get interesting.
Our next court support protest will be for Billy McKee’s sentencing on October 30 in Palmerston North. Contact the Daktory if you want to be there or you can help in any way.
October 8th, 2012
Police and Thieves is an old reggae song. It makes the point that there is no real difference between the two.
At our protest at Waitakere District Court today, police proved the point – they stole our signs, in broad daylight, in front of witnesses.
Members of the protest team placed some signs up against a police car for a photo opportunity. It was Car N71, registration GFB454. We provide this information in case anyone wants to monitor this vehicle. It is also for the benefit of the Police Cyber Crime Unit, who read this blog and complain if false names are disclosed.
A shaven headed cop turned up, grabbed four of our signs, and threw them in the boot of N71. He claimed that the signs were now police property because they were in contact with a police vehicle. One of the signs was – two others had blown to the ground and the cop pulled the fourth sign out of Dakta Green’s hand.
Today’s protest was for Dakta Blaze, arrested for shutting a door behind him when he went outside to talk to the cops, whilst the cops were performing an illegal search of The Daktory.
It could be a long while – his next court appearance is in February for a status hearing.
Once Blaze was finished in court, we set out to track down the brazen thief. All 8 of us went to Henderson police station to lodge a complaint.
The remarkably youthful looking acting desk sergeant told us we would have to complain to the Independent Police Conduct Authority. This was not good enough. The officer was shown images of the thief in the act of committing his crime. He refused to arrest the suspect.
While the acting sergeant continued stonewalling, a chubby cop came downstairs with the signs and handed them over. He didn’t offer an apology – just a stern warning not to let them touch police property again.
Safer communities together. Better work stories. Don’t forget to blow on the pie.
October 8th, 2012
On Saturday Dakta Green was a guest speaker at the Libertarianz annual conference, along with party founder Lindsay Perigo and Auckland councillor Dick Quax. Introduced as “a man of conviction and a man with many convictions,” Dakta Green spoke about his journey from National Party member to law reformer, his prison experiences, and his determination to keep fighting on behalf of the cannabis community.
The Libertarianz believe all drugs should be legal, they support voluntary euthanasia, and they want to reduce the size and scope of government. They have been on the political fringe, but their ideas are spreading – as shown by the campaigns of Ron Paul and Gary Johnson in the USA.
Open Days still open
We had a few people drop by on Sunday and a few more came by trying to buy cannabis – sorry, everyone, the dispensary is closed.
We will be open on Wednesday evenings and Sunday afternoons until further notice. Wednesdays from 7.30 to 10 pm, Sundays from noon to 6 pm. Come and talk to us – help us keep the Daktory alive.
October 4th, 2012
Some good news from the legal sysem this week. Doug McLeod had a charge withdrawn – the charge of permitting premises to be used for consumption of cannabis. He was charged with this “crime” because he was staying at the Daktory one of the times when it was raided.
Eight people turned up at Waitakere Ditrict Court this wet and chilly morning to support Doug. We got plenty of toots and waves from passing traffic as hundreds of people saw our signs.
They told Doug to be at the court at 9 am, but it was early 10 am before the judge turned up. Why are judges alwys late? In most oher jobs you would get sacked if you were late all the time.
Fortunately, Doug’s case was the first one to be called. The police sought leave to withdraw the charge, and it was all over. A few people clapped, but not loud enough to upset the judge.
Doug stood in the dock, proudly wearing his Freedom is NORML T shirt, and asked for an apology from the prosecutor. The judge told him to take it up with his lawyer, and he was free to go.
We gathered outside the court for another show of signs and more photos – you’ll find some of them on Facebook. Doug called out “Cannabis for sale!” when a cop walked by.
Doug’s next appearance at Waitakere court will be on yet amother bullshit charge. He was arrested or sparking up a solar cone at a previous protest. This is a classic example of how the police try to bully the law reform movement into submission.
Dakta Gizi is back at the Daktory, now that her bail conditions have been changed, and she no longer has a curfew. So no more 5 am curfew checks by the filth – a favorite trick of theirs.
At Monday’s bail hearing, police opposed the changes. They even tried to get Dakta Green’s bail conditions altered, in spite of the fact that it was not his bail hearing. They claimed that “law breaking” is still going on at the Daktory. No comment.
Thanks to the people who replied with information about other court appearances. We don’t know about them unless somebody tells us, and we want to spread the word about any of our people being vicrtimized by the legal system – so keep the info coming.
Huge Crowds At Open Day
Just kidding, folks. It was a very quiet Sunday afternoon at the Daktory, but a few friends dropped by – and nothing bad happened. So we did it again Wednesday evening. Six people turned up this time – all wanting to buy weed. We hd to disappoint them – we can no longer offer that service, and we ask people not to smoke on the premises.
Everything else is still here at the Daktory – the pool table, table tennis, table soccer, darts, chess, snacks and drinks, and hard core Daktivists.
We’re having another open day this Sunday, noon to 6 pm. Come and talk to us about what you would like to see and do at the club. We are open to suggestions.
Become a member and help the Daktory survive. Membership is just $20 a month. If enough people join, we can afford to keep the club running – and get the Cannabus back on the road.
For anyone who would like to donate through automatic payment or online banking, the account number is:
Last But Not Least
A big “Thank You” to everyone who has made a donation to the Daktory. Your support will help to make it possible to reopen and to continue the fight for our rights.
September 28th, 2012
Dakta Blaze had to go to court on Thursday on a charge of obstruction, after he closed the door behind him when talking to police last Friday. He and Dakta Green got to court at 8.30 am to find that the police had not got their paperwork together and nothing had been organised. After waiting around for three hours, they finally got a hearing and had the case put off till October 8, when Blaze is appearing on other charges.
This will be at Waitakere District Court, in Ratanui Street, Henderson. We hope that our friends can come to the court and show their support for Dakta Blaze and their outrage at the ridiculous waste of time and taxpayer’s money this case involves. Meet at 8.30 am.
Daktivists will be keeping the courts busy in the near future. On October 1 Dakta Green and Dakta Gizi are in Waitakere court for a call over for their charges arising from the June raid on the Daktory.
On October 5 Doug McLeod will appear in Waitakere court – he is charged with permitting premises to be used for smoking cannabis. This charge was laid because he was staying at the Daktory when it was raided, and he gave the club as his address.
We hope people can also come to this court hearing to protest the ongoing police harassment and time wasting. Meeting time for this protest is also 8.30 am. Doug might demonstrate his legendary solar cone – weather permitting.
Billy McKee’s sentencing date is October 29 in Palmerston North. It is possible that he could be sentenced to prison. Supporters are planning an all night vigil at the court on the night before his sentencing – further details to be advised.
It is important to keep up the pressure on the courts to let them know that the cannabis community will not tolerate the ongoing persecution and injustice directed at our people.
September 27th, 2012
Do you want to see the Daktory reopen? It can if enough people are willing to support it.
We are asking our friends and supporters to become members at the modest cost of $20 a month. This will help to cover the outgoings on the building and provide a token of support for the law reform movement – which is still alive despite the many attacks on it.
If you are interested, come along – the Daktory will have an open day this Sunday from noon to 6 pm and an open evening next Wednesday from 7.30-10 pm. Entry is free for both – with a donation bucket if you are feeling generous – and there will be drinks and snacks for sale. All the facilities are still there for members to enjoy – the pool table, table tennis, table soccer, darts and more.
On Sunday we will be screening The Union: The Business of Getting High at 3 pm – an interesting and informative documentary about the cannabis industry. On Wednesday evening there will be an information session about bitcoins.
This is your opportunity to help keep the Daktory alive and to tell us what you would like to see happening at the club. If you have any suggestions for events, activities and improvements, please let us know.
If the Daktory has to close, then all the effort that went into keeping it open for the last three years will have been for nothing – and the law reform movement will lose an outstanding icon and a valuable centre for activism.
The Daktory will have to operate on a different basis than it has in the past. There will no longer be a dispensary, and people will not be able to consume cannabis on the premises. This is due to Dakta Green’s bail conditions – one of the “crimes” he is charged with is allowing the Daktory to be used for consumption of cannabis. If he is found to be in breach of bail, he could be put in jail until his trial, which will not take place until next year.
Of course you can always have a session before you come to the Daktory or go outside for a smoke like people do with cigarettes. And for your own protection, pleaase do not bring any weed into the building – just in case we get a visit from the local chapter of the Government Gang.
September 22nd, 2012
The Daktory is now operating a bitcoin exchange service where people can buy and sell bitcoins. It was launched last Wednesday – September 19 – and within a few days there has been a huge amount of interest.
What is a bitcoin? It is a form of electronic currency – instead of a piece of paper or a coin, it comprises a computer code which is securely stored in a bitcoin wallet. It can be accessed on a mobile phone so it is completely portable, and it can only be accessed by the person who owns the bitcoins.
Bitcoins are a legal form of currency that is completely free from interference by governments and banks. They provide total privacy for all kinds of transactions, and they are accepted by many kinds of businesses all over the world.
The Daktory has set up a website – www.coinmarket.co.nz – where you can buy and sell bitcoins, and find more information about them.