June 10, 2005 – Asserting that a state law protecting the physician-approved use of marijuana is "essentially dead" in the wake of a Supreme Court ruling earlier this week, the US Attorney for Hawaii indicated that his office would pursue charges against physicians who prescribe the drug, a permitted practice under state law.
In a statement made after the high court ruling became public, Edward Kubo, US Attorney for Hawaii, stated that "medical marijuana as a practice and as an excuse is dead in Hawaii." Doctors may face misdemeanor drug distribution charges if they provide pot to patients or assist them in obtaining it.
Nearly 3,000 people are registered with a state-run medical marijuana program. Kubo said his office will leave use prosecution up to state law enforcement officials.
On Monday, the Supreme Court found that Californiaâ€™s 1996 voter approved initiative allowing the possession of marijuana for the use in treatment of a variety of ailments did not prohibit the federal government from prosecuting individuals who used, possessed or sold the illegal plant.