Saturday, December 20, 2008

MS Patient Facing Charges Used Bee Venom

Somerset Man Pleads Not Guilty to Growing Marijuana
By Jennifer Golson, The Star-Ledger (USA), 12/19/2008

A Somerset County man pleaded not guilty today to drug production charges for allegedly growing 17 marijuana plants outside his home.

John Ray Wilson, 36, of Franklin Township, suffers from multiple sclerosis. His lawyer said Wilson uses the drug to help alleviate his symptoms.

Wilson is charged with maintaining or operating a drug production facility and with drug manufacturing. The plants were discovered on Aug. 18.

During an arraignment and status conference in Somerville, Wilson's attorney, James Wronko rejected the state's plea offer of six years in prison, three of them mandatory.

A helicopter pilot noticed the plants and contacted State Police, according to court papers. Members of the New Jersey State Police Marijuana Eradication Squad, Somerset County Prosecutor's Office and Franklin met with Wilson, authorities said.

Wilson was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in February 2002 and has no health insurance. He uses the marijuana and venom from bee stings to alleviate his symptoms, Wronko said.

"I can't conceive of any circumstances in which I would ever plead Mr .Wilson, or anyone for that matter, to three years in state prison because they were growing marijuana for personal use to treat multiple sclerosis," Wronko said after court…

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