LOS ANGELES, Calif. /Neotrope News Network/ — Craig Rubin has never been accused of actually selling marijuana. In three hearings the only testimony from two LAPD police officers, Tracye Fields-Black and Cecil Mangrum, is that Rubin spoke to both officers about the Bible, the Ten Commandments and the testimony of Jesus Christ; and now he is going to jail for it and without a trial. This is a prime example that we are currently living in a police state. “Trutanich and Cooley, our local elected attorneys, are ignoring real crime, wasting tax payer’s money and aiding and abetting an ongoing criminal enterprise (LAPD Narcotics Division),” says Rubin former candidate for mayor of Los Angeles.
Video of Rubin on ajnag:
Rubin has been a licensed clergy member since graduating from UCLA with a history major that emphasized religious history. On October 22nd 2009 Rubin was arrested at his wife’s store, Tara’s Tee-shirts, now closed, when police entered without a warrant and pointed weapons at customers in the store, they seized money from Rubin’s wife’s store and claimed it as drug money, which allows them to keep it. Officers and Detectives then allegedly falsified police documents stating that a minor customer in Tara Rubin’s shop was actually in Mr. Rubin’s church that provided legal medical marijuana. In the first arrest Rubin alleges that the law enforcement officers who arrested didn’t report a $10,000 check Rubin had written them and they cashed the check prior to arresting and seizing back the money. These funds were never reported as seized.
Author and pastor Rubin believes the jailing is retaliation for his mayoral campaign. “This thing has appeared rigged since the beginning.” Rubin has been anti-prohibition for over 30 years having worked with Dennis Peron and Jack Herer. Rubin has videos showing, “The biggest pot dealer I know of in the world,” and with Rubin’s experience that is saying something, “associating with law enforcement going in-and-out of a private door belonging to legalzoom .com, across the street from Temple 420, all day.” Rubin has witnesses that place the well-known alleged drug dealer using the same private door to observe the arrest. Rubin further asserts, “Coincidentally Robert Shapiro, legalzoom.com spokesman, calls me the next morning to ‘help out’ when he is supposedly the Chairman of some anti-drug group — and the person he claims asked him to call me, none other than the CEO of legalzoom .com, himself a person I’ve never met.”
In 2006, when the first arrest took place Rubin and his wife had their life’s savings seized prior to being convicted of any crime, thus limiting their ability to hire an attorney, but coincidentally an attorney approached Rubin in Superior Court claiming to be working as a criminal defense attorney. She had “street cred,” being a pastor herself, and having represented Tupac Shakur in the past. Rubin retained her through trial, but after repeated written requests she was unable to provide a retainer agreement. Rubin was informed by a California attorney, claiming to supervise her, that his attorney was a full-time employee of the federal government moonlighting without permission from her job at the Veteran’s Administration.
“When you hear about something my office does that appears to be unjust,” Carmen Trutanich said at a recent Homeowner’s Association, “I want you trust that our office is doing the right things for the right reasons.” However, it appears clear that Trutanich has worked with LA DA Steve Cooley to close Rubin’s medical marijuana club, Temple 420, for all the wrong reasons.
In 2006, Rubin was convicted after being denied the ability to show the jury Officer Tracye Fields-Black’s membership agreement to the temple and was prevented from mentioning medical marijuana at trial. Rubin states, “My potential witnesses, who were members of Temple 420, were assigned lawyers by the court and each warned that they too could be charged with a conspiracy leading them to face up to 20 years in prison,” Rubin claims this was only one of the things that made the trial unfair because an M.D. he had lined up to testify backed out after allegedly being warned he could be charged. “The only officer to testify against me, Field-Black, committed perjury and without her testimony there wouldn’t have been a conviction.”
Rubin is harsh on local politicians and law enforcement, “Our city and county are sick. They have leukemia and the white blood cells that should be protecting us, are our elected attorneys, have turned on the citizens and are attacking law abiding people for their own political gains.”
At the January homeowners association meeting Trutanich said, “I haven’t gone after and shut down the medical marijuana clubs.” However, on October 22, 2009, prior to that untrue statement, Trutanich’s office had Rubin arrested. Trutanich also said, “Probably my kids have smoked it (marijuana). We know it is not the worst thing in the world. It is the criminal element that comes with it.” He went on to say, “I do law, not policy and selling medical marijuana is illegal.”
Officer Cecil Mangrum testified that Assistant City Attorney Asha Greenberg had Rubin arrested on a permit issue one day after Greenberg wrote a letter to Rubin from the City Attorney’s office saying that the City Attorney’s office wasn’t pursuing permit issues. Mangrum testified that in his career had made only 15 controlled buys of marijuana; all of them at medical marijuana clubs. With all those buys the only person ever arrested according to his sworn testimony is Pastor Rubin who says, “Cooley and Trutanich are trying to label me the ‘criminal element’ when I am pastor running a church that provides legal medical marijuana. My arrest was purely political. Cooley and Trutanich are thugs because everyone knows there are a few MMJ clubs run by, shall we say, less ethical people, yet they arrest me?”
Rubin words cut like a knife when it comes to holding public officials accountable for their actions. “I never broke the law. All it takes is one corrupt judge and a District Attorney with political ambition and they can send any innocent person in the city to jail.” Rubin is not happy about having to go to jail without being able to confront his accuser and without a trial. “I am a pastor who has never personally sold pot according the LAPD’s own testimony. My job is to teach pot smokers about the Bible and that is all I have done. Our justice system is corrupt and our government is sick. In this case it is Justice that needs to be investigated including the Judge Windham who seems to be in collusion with Trutanich and Cooley.”
Rubin is also in possession of letters written by the LAPD to Rubin’s landlord threatening to seize her property if she didn’t evict Rubin because they claimed the pastor was running an “illegal” marijuana dispensary. They claimed to be prosecuting a case against him, but the case was dropped because Rubin’s dispensary was 100% completely legal according to Judge Windham’s own words, so there was no case against Rubin the DA could pursue. Rubin is considering a case of slander against the LAPD for alleging his club was selling marijuana “illegally” when in fact it was not.
Rubin is asking people sympathetic to his cause to call Governor Schwarzenegger’s office to ask for some relief for Rubin in this case. (916) 445-2841 ext. 6. Rubin has to turn himself in on March 26, 2010 at 9:00 a.m. at the LAX Courthouse. “People keep joking,” Rubin says, “don’t pick up the soap, but the only one being screwed is the tax payers as the City of LA spent millions upon millions of local dollars to put me, a pastor, in jail for one gram of pot. I hope people are outraged at how Cooley and Trutanich are using the people’s money.”
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Story References: Temple 420, Craig X Rubin, medical cannabis clubs, legalization, marijuana, crackdown, legal, conviction, trial, laws, district attorney.