As the American people prepare to vote on marijuana ballot measures in three states and the District of Columbia, measures which would make the mind-altering substance more freely available, more bad news keeps coming for the well-funded pothead lobby.
In a major terrorism-related case, a participant in the cover-up of the Boston Marathon bombing conspiracy, Robel Phillipos, claimed the drug had so many bad effects on his brain that he lied to federal agents.
The key question, however, is whether the major media will ever start reporting on the substantial evidence linking “cannabis” and mental illness, violence and terrorism.
The “reefer madness” defense for Phillipos, a close friend and associate of Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokar Tsarnaev, would be laughable were it not for the fact that the Boston bombings killed three people and injured hundreds. Martin Richard, the eight-year-old boy killed in the bombing, had been photographed holding a sign that said, “No more hurting people. Peace.”
The pothead defense clearly didn’t work out the way his radical left lawyers had planned; Phillipos has now been found guilty by a jury of lying to the FBI, “despite his claim that he was too high to remember what he had done,” as The Atlantic magazine described the unusual defense.
The son of an Ethiopian immigrant, Phillipos knew that two other Tsarnaev friends removed a backpack containing evidence of the terrorist crime from his college dorm room at the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth. But he lied about it to federal agents.
His attorney, Susan Church, and her co-counsel, Derege Demissie, had argued that “he smoked marijuana about a half-dozen times that day, and was simply unable to reconstruct his actions during a series of high-pressure interviews with federal agents,” The Boston Globe reported. The Globe said legal analysts were divided over whether the “I forget because of marijuana” defense would work.
Well, it didn’t.
According to the U.S. Attorney’s office, between April 19, 2013 and April 26, 2013, federal investigators interviewed Phillipos five times about the bombing and during each of those interviews Phillipos lied. He blamed marijuana for all of these memory “lapses.”
U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz said, “In the wake of one of the most significant events in this city’s modern history—an event which left two young women and a child dead, and many more injured —thousands of ordinary citizens assisted law enforcement in identifying and locating the perpetrators.” However, she said that Phillipos did just the opposite. “He lied to agents when he could have helped. He concealed when he could have assisted,” she said.
He faces eight years in prison for each of the two counts of lying, three years of supervised release, and a fine of $250,000 for each charge.
Incredibly, former governor of Massachusetts and 1988 Democratic nominee for president Michael Dukakis testified on his behalf and said he and his wife had taken him to the 2004 Democratic National Convention as a “special guest.” Dukakis said, “We watched him grow up.”
Based on the defense of his crimes offered by his lawyers, it appears that he grew up into a zombie willing to lie about his knowledge of the worst terrorist incident in Boston history because marijuana clouded his memory.
This provocative legal theory came, not surprisingly, from the far-left.