Thursday, October 13, 2005

Thank God for the Drug War

Hospital patient taken to face U.S. marijuana charge
Lawyer: 'This is totally inhumane'

SEATTLE, Washington (AP) -- An Army veteran who fled to Canada to avoid prosecution for growing marijuana to treat his chronic pain was taken from a hospital, driven to the border with a catheter still attached, and turned over to U.S. officials, his lawyer said.

Steven W. Tuck then went five days with no medical treatment and only ibuprofen for the pain, the attorney said.

Tuck, 38, was still fitted with the urinary catheter when he shuffled into federal court Wednesday for a detention hearing Wednesday.

"This is totally inhumane. He's been tortured for days for no reason," Hiatt said.

Tuck suffered debilitating injuries in the 1980s when his parachute failed to open during a jump. Those injuries were exacerbated by a car crash in 1990, Hiatt said, and Tuck was using marijuana for chronic pain.

In 2001, while Tuck was living in McKinleyville, California, his marijuana operation was raided for the second time. He fled to British Columbia to avoid prosecution but asylum was denied.

Tuck checked last Friday into a Vancouver hospital for prostate problems and was arrested there by Canadian authorities.

Richard Cowan, a friend, said he was with Tuck at the hospital when authorities arrested him.

"I would not believe it unless I had seen it," Cowan said. "They sent people in to arrest him while he was on a gurney. They took him out of the hospital in handcuffs, put him in an SUV, and drove him to the border."


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