Multiple Sclerosis patient busted for cannabis

MS Patient now faces court ordeal

By Clark French

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) patient Michelle consumes cannabis to alleviate the symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis.

Michelle uses cannabis for Multiple Sclerosis.

Yet another MS patient, this time in Oxfordshire has been raided for growing her own medicine after being denied Sativex. This is a complete travesty and an utter waste of tax payer’s resources. We know cannabis is the single most effective medicine for MS patients as proven by the ten year study at the University of California and by numerous other scientific studies. You only need to type in cannabis and MS into Google to get a wealth of information on the subject. I caught up with Michelle and asked her a few questions regarding her case. 

Hi Michelle, thanks for agreeing to talk to NORML UK and get your story heard on our website. 

You use cannabis to treat your Multiple Sclerosis? Can you briefly explain how MS affects your life and how cannabis helps?

Imagine falling into a bush of stinging nettles … stinging buzzing burning all over your feet, hands, legs, arms, buttocks, back and shoulders; around your neck, in your ears, your nose, your mouth. Well that’s just one of the symptoms … I have this symptom every day and have done for decades… I don’t really seem to stress about it when I have cannabis in my system. It still happens but I’m able to accept it.

Have you ever played that Buzz game where you hold a device and press a button before other players and the loser gets a shock? My brother thinks it’s great that I can hold three or four of these devices and get the shocks every time and not even flinch. That’s because I get those shocks every day, every hour; and cannabis allows me to ignore them rather than be over exaggerated and cause myself more problems.

What advice would you give to someone with Multiple Sclerosis or another chronic condition who is thinking of trying cannabis?

Cannabis, in MY opinion, exaggerates certain brain activities … for example: If you are an overly sensitive person then it can transpire to paranoia. It calms and fixes nerve problems and allows the brain to continue working. Nosce Te Ipsum: Know thyself.

Sativex, a legal cannabis tincture made from herbal cannabis is used to treat Multiple Sclerosis.

Sativex: Legal cannabis medicine.

You have applied for Sativex; what was the experience of being turned down for a medicine which your neurologist wants to prescribe you?

I was totally shocked when I was turned down and even more shocked when my appeal was turned down. I was given no alternative, no support, no referral to neurologists; nothing… just a quick letter to dispose of my request without any regard to the facts. I was also shocked that they got so many of the facts about my case wrong. Did they even consider my condition? I felt like I was a worthless throw away request without any support.

What made you decide to grow your own cannabis? Would you have grown it yourself if you had been given Sativex?

I felt that the PCT gave me no alternative. I even wrote to them explaining how they would be forcing me to get the help myself. I waited years, offered myself as a willing guinea-pig for their trials. I had suffered and struggled thinking this drug would soon be legal and then when it was I was denied it, even though I became less of a burden with the drug than without it. My GP knew I was taking cannabis and I visited him less and less with my own control. My Neurologist knew I was taking cannabis and discussed the bad side effects. I was even accepted on trials at the Neuro department JR Oxford for new drugs to treat MS with chemo and they knew I was taking cannabis. I didn’t seem to suffer from the bad side effects they expected from cannabis. I did however have very bad side effects from the trials drugs.

What do your health care professionals think about you using herbal cannabis after being denied Sativex?

If only they could speak freely without receiving any disciplinary action. Off the record accounts for nothing and those who talk on the record have their volume muted before it reaches the public. I do however have a letter from Professor Wade from the Neurological department at John Radcliff Hospital stating my name and how he feels I benefit from the use of cannabis with my Multiple Sclerosis. This letter counted for nothing!

Can you explain the experience of being raided by the police and what impact that has had on you?

Participating in the use of a controlled substance generally means that you would pre-warn yourself about the impact of a raid. I am not an aggressive person and I always speak the truth. I was also expecting the raid as I had been warned by the angry friend who reported me to expect one by a text message “Oh dear, you’re in trouble KNOCK KNOCK” was sent to my mobile. When it eventually happened I tried to stay calm and be obliging.

I can’t do this anymore … I will NOT stop using cannabis to treat my MS while I am able to get it. As I have had this disease for many years and I have a vast amount of contacts, I will always be able to get cannabis while I am a free person. I have tried to obtain the drug legally and even considered moving to a country that does allow us to this drug legally. The answer to that is “Why should I? I was born in Oxfordshire, educated in Oxfordshire, worked and paid taxes in Oxfordshire, diagnosed with the disease in Oxfordshire. Pensioned off on medical grounds in Oxfordshire. I allowed my body to be used for trials on my disease in Oxfordshire. The drug I require was tested in Oxfordshire and now it is legal. I am not worthy.

If I am not worthy, then do I not have a human right to avoid laws set by those who have rejected me? I am only allowed prescribed drugs that slow my breathing, make me move about less or make me fat and heavy so I can’t move about and then I eventually die or commit suicide? I’m asking for a drug that allows me to get the best from my body and even return to work.

What do you want to see happen in the future so that other people don’t have to go through the same experiences?

Change for medical information. The truth about CBD content in cannabis to be aired; rather than all the bad press concerning the THC content.

Daily Mail journalist, Peter Hitchens, does not think patients with Multiple Sclerosis should be allowed to medicate on home grown cannabis.

Peter Hitchens wants to lock up Multiple Sclerosis patients who use cannabis as a medicine.

The daily mail journalist Peter Hitchens has argued that we need harsher drug laws, as we don’t have an effective prohibition in the UK – what would you say to him after your experience with the police?

The laws are harsh enough. Three officers and two vehicles attended the scene while I was there. I was locked in a cell for several hours, interviewed under caution, finger printed etc and released on bail. I now have a date for Magistrates Court. I have been informed it could go to Crown Court and I may face a prison sentence. When I went home I discovered that all my equipment for hydroponic growing had been taken as evidence against me. I was cooperative throughout the entire procedure.

A disabled woman treating her Multiple Sclerosis with a home grown herb that is proven to aid recovery was sent to prison.

Is that the headline Peter Hitchens is expecting? Or does he want me flogged?


This is not the first time I have reported on MS patients being arrested and being hauled through the courts for using cannabis as a medicine to help alleviate the symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis. Only a couple of months ago I reported on the cruel magistrate, Anita Hall, who told former Special Constable and MS patient Susan Lunn was told she would face a much worse punishment if she were caught using cannabis again. If Anita Hall knew what the pain of living with Multiple Sclerosis was like she would know there is no worse punishment that being denied your medication.

Personally I believe that raids on MS patients have to stop. NORML UK and my own organisation Action4MS will be working with Michelle further to try and get her story heard. It is a complete waste of tax payer’s money and Thames Valley Police really should be ashamed of themselves for raiding a patient’s home. Are you a medical patient and have a similar story? If so then please get in contact with NORML as we would love to hear from you. 


Clark French is an MS patient and founding member of NORML UK. You can read more by him including articles and strain reviews on his blog – www.clarkfrench.wordpress.com

Posted in News, Women´s Alliance and tagged , , , , , , , , .

17 Comments

  1. as far as i’m concerned, this is denying Michelle her basic human rights, to be able to treat herself with the most affective medicine possible. Her human rights are being violated, that’s the real crime here

  2. How bad a society have we become when we force the sick to stand up for themselves despite disability?

    My highest praises to this woman for standing up for herself.

  3. Cases like Michelle’s need to be shouted from the roof tops and her case brought before the high court. It unacceptable for a person suffering from a debilitating illness such as MS to be a) denied Sativex and then b) punished for growing her own medicine because she is left with little choice. This is a disgusting attack on peoples basic human rights to choose how they heal and medicate themselves. Being forced to use only prescription medication with all its nasty side effects is tantamount to torture and the rat bastards in charge who are forcing this upon thousands of very ill people need to be brought to justice. Everybody should be made aware of how corrupt and cowardly our government are. Our backwards country is one of the last in the world to admit cannabis has medicinal qualities and allow it to be prescribed in a more sensible and cheaper form than Sativex.

    As for Peter Hitchens, he is nothing but a self serving prick of an amoeba. The less attention people give him the sooner he can shrink away and die a lonesome death (hopefully of something cannabis may have been able to help with his suffering…oh that would be gloriously ironic) of ignorance and intolerance.

  4. Cases like Michelle’s need to be shouted from the roof tops and her case brought before the high court. It is unacceptable for a person suffering from a debilitating illness such as MS to be a) denied Sativex and then b) punished for growing her own medicine because she is left with little choice. This is a disgusting attack on peoples basic human rights to choose how they heal and medicate themselves. Being forced to use only prescription medication with all its nasty side effects is tantamount to torture and the rat bastards in charge who are forcing this upon thousands of very ill people need to be brought to justice. Everybody should be made aware of how corrupt and cowardly our government are. Our backwards country is one of the last in the world to admit cannabis has medicinal qualities and allow it to be prescribed in a more sensible and cheaper form than Sativex.

    As for Peter Hitchens, he is nothing but a self serving prick of an amoeba. The less attention people give him the sooner he can shrink away and die a lonesome death (hopefully of something cannabis may have been able to help with his suffering…oh that would be gloriously ironic) of ignorance and intolerance.

  5. No Victim, no Crime, that is if she stands in Common Law…it may be worth her getting an advocate or McKenzie friend to help her stand in Common law and deny consent to maritime jurisdiction. Maybe British Constitution Group would help her… Roger Hayes, Guy Taylor both have good experience of calling out the criminal actions of the court in the way they fraudulently deceive us and trick us into contract for legal services..

    For her complaint, I would be grateful if you would forward her my suggestions…Look at MMS as a body cleansing regime and then follow it with consuming Physical Gold to nourish the neural system. MS can be attributed to a lack of gold in the body..

    Please pass this message on to Michelle if you have retained contact, thanks.

  6. On a ‘lawful’ note, The Queen swore to uphold the law of the Bible which clearly states in Genesis 1:29 “And God said ‘Behold I have given you every herb bearing seed which is upon the face of all the earth and every tree, in which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.” . Thus the Queen’s law and it’s agents are sworn to uphold this ‘law’ which surely must be considered viable as it was spoken by ‘God’…

    Statutes and acts are to refine Common Law, when they actually contradict the very basis of all Law, in Queens oath the Bible coming before ‘customs and laws of the land’
    then it must be argued that they are by very nature invalid and corrupt since inception. Cannabis is a covenant between the Creator and Man that has stood for thousands of years. No modern law can claim superiority to the ‘God’ they make us swear to tell the Truth upon…

    • The freeman argument was tried by a cannabis cultivator last year; the judge put the person in question on remand in jail for a few months, when this would not normally have happened, and told him if he ever tried that on again, he would send him to prison for a very long time.

      Also, your argument is very unappealing to rational atheists who do not believe in god and think the bible is a silly old book written by bronze age tribesmen with little understanding of science or the world.

  7. Maybe it is time for an ad in a serious paper(not the Mail) to counter the lies about medicinal cannabis use. There must be plenty of famous,and rich ex and current users – such as rock stars etc who may help. I would make a donation myself.
    Something similar happened in the late sixties in the Times I think ,it was signed and funded by well known people.
    Such an ad could also highlight how many other countries have decriminalised medicinal cannabis usage.

  8. It was bad news for me to read another press article about an MS sufferer who was arrested and taken to court for growing a few cannabis plants for her own use in her own home.

    In The Netherlands, raw cannabis itself is sold via pharmacies, on prescription – even UK citizens can get it although they cannot legally import it. Raw Cannabis is also available on prescription in Italy, German and the Czech republic, and other countries.

    Also in the Netherlands of course there are Cannabis Coffeeshops that sell quality controlled cannabis to members of he public over 18 years of age.

    In Spain and Belgium, Cannabis Social Clubs (CSC’s) are tolerated; they are transparent and controlled, non profit- making collectives that grow communal cannabis crops for distribution amongst members that require it for their own beneficial uses. It has taken much of the supply out of the hands of street dealers that may also offer other drugs.

    In some states in the US, cannabis clinics enable people to buy cannabis, again on prescription.

    But in the UK the Government continues to schedule cannabis as a drug with no medicinal use, even though they have recently re-scheduled Sativex, the extract, as a drug with medicinal value.

    Sativex is a simple extract of al the active constituents of cannabis into an alcohol solution which is sold as an oral spray: the plants are being grown by the pharmaceutical company, GW.

    Meanwhile, across the UK, those in medicinal beneficial need are still being arrested and fined, growers even sent to prison – even though they have done no harm or posed no risk to others or to public health. Those people that don’t need to buy and don’t need to burden the tax-payers through prescription Sativex.

    There is something wrong here. The law cannot surely to have been intended
    to punish people that grow plants for their own use as medicine?

    The question ought to be: “is there a victim?”, before an arrest is made.

    If there is NO VICTIM, then there ought be NO CRIME”

  9. The level or lack of understanding in the Great British way of life speaks for itself. It is a mentality which is generally unhelpful and not the first time good people come to realize this and Michelle’s case is no exception. Medical Marijuana is needed by many and this subject as we all know should open up become understood in the true way of understanding. A woman such as Michelle has a legitimate reason to use Marijuana and the law should change that all people who fall into a health category who would benefit from using Marijuana for self medication should be available and permission be given to grow her own supply. Having said that the British government should really take a positive example from The United States and cultivate government grown Marijuana to applicant patients making things easier for the patient, doctors, and Government which benefits society with regards a valid cure and treatment, offering employment and bringing the police into a more friendly social understanding regarding Marijuana users because i really cannot understand what is wrong with taking the best medicine to cure or treat illness. Society really has got it all wrong when coming to understand how “Cannabinoids” work inside the human body. May the good spirit be with you Michelle and guide you in this time of trouble. I dont think that the outcome of this case will negative in fact it will help the legal people, health people and people in general to understand this subject correctly and hopefully have a n effect on future decisions being made at legal levels. People who self medicate with Marijuana are not criminals. Thank you.

  10. i also got busted for growing one single plant i use only for my medical purpose. i suffer from curvature of the spine, arthritis in the lower lumber secion of my spine due to the curvature also two bulging discs in lower secion which are in contact with the root nerves, im in pain every day, have many a sleepness nights due to the pain. cannibis not only helps me cope with the pain it also helps me sleep. when they prosicuted me i took all my medical evidence to court with me and also explained to the judge how cannibis helps me day to day cope with the pain in my spine. they didnt seem interested i was facing a jail term of 6mths for my first ever offence relating to cannibis . in the end i was put on tag for 3mths and fined £100. people i know grow 20 to 30 plants for greed and they get a slap on the wrist. thats justic for you……

  11. Maybe everyone should grow cannabise en masse…what can the law do then? Maybe get a campaign up to give everyone free seeds, if everyone grew just one plant in an act of mass defiance whether they intend to smoke or not, it would signal a major level,of solidarity with those needing medical marijuana. I’d happily grow a plant in defiance 🙂

  12. I wish to add it is time these stories were collected and collated and presented as a dossier to the United Nations and to Amnesty International and presentations were made to ask for aid and assistance from these human rights organizations. Maybe we need someone from Amnesty to come and advocate for people like Michelle…no more Biz Ivol tragedies

  13. I was busted just over a year ago for 24 plants being grown for my partner who had a brain heomorage she too as asked for sativex and was denied, i was given 200 hours unpaid work and a 80£ fine( i get paid 55£ a week for 40 hours as her carer) . The police who came were almost embarresed that they were there, they never broke anything or took any equipement just seizes some holiday money, they didnt handcuff me and was realeases on bail within 45 mins, i too was informed on, the cannabis i produced was the only thing that stopped her being sick all prescribed anti ametics were useless

  14. My mrs had ms and I grow it for her the reason people get raided is because they don’t use the correct kit to get rid of odors ect or freely smoke it where people can smell it ! But it sounds like this women has a feud with the neibours and let’s the street know what she does , yeah I agree u shouldn’t be brought before the courts but hey how many plants did she grow plus were u selling it as well I ask !

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *