Protesters at raids court cases call for boys to come home

UPDATE 5.20PM: SUPPORTERS of the Nimbin Lane Boys gathered outside Lismore courthouse to protest for "long overdue" cannabis law reform this morning.

 Twenty nine men were arrested earlier this year as part of Strike Force Cuppa, an investigation into the ongoing supply of cannabis in Nimbin.

The men, nicknamed Nimbin Lane Boys, appeared before court yesterday and will continue appearances today, surrounded by their angry friends and family who wish to "bring the boys back home".

President of the Nimbin HEMP Embassy, Michael Balderstone, said in an email that most of the men were not allowed to enter Nimbin.

Supporters of the Nimbin Laneboys protest outside Lismore Courthouse on Monday morning.
Supporters of the Nimbin Laneboys protest outside Lismore Courthouse on Monday morning.

 

"They are our boys, young men who grew up in this tight-knit, close community," he said.

"They went to school together, play football together, and many of them work together now.

"What are the real consequences of these restrictions? Who is thinking it through?"

Nimbin resident Dionne May said the protest was not only about the 29 accused men, but also about a much larger issue - the legalisation of medical marijuana.

"We know something is going on in Nimbin. It's called a revolution. A revolution about marijuana," she said.

"It's a plant, and I'm here today to stick up for her and to stick up for the boys in our town who supply this to the sick people in Australia."

Mr Balderstone said unlike other prescribed medicines cannabis was natural and organic.

"Think about where people get their medicine from," he said.

"Cannabis is the medicine you really want, and we need the government to make a move or at least back off a bit.

"How about giving us a break and the police a break.

"It shouldn't be in the same basket as ice, for example."

He said the Nimbin Lane Boys were important members of the community for their local knowledge.

"If we get any real dramas in the community they keep the peace," he said.

"And they stop people from being ripped off with drugs and they keep ice out of town."

INITIAL: SUPPORTERS of the Nimbin Laneboys have planned a courthouse protest as their cases begin appearing before court today.

A number of people were arrested as part of Strike Force Cuppa, a police operation investigating the ongoing supply of cannabis in Nimbin.

The court cases of the arrested men begin today, and supporters and protesters are planning to gather outside Lismore Courthouse.

"All those who think cannabis law reform is long overdue are encouraged to come," President of Nimbin's HEMP Embassy Michael Balderstone said.

"Saliva testing of drivers for merely the presence of pot should be enough to bring 10,000 people at least.

"It's time cannabis users were respected and the law changed.

"There might even be an apology due."

Supporters of the Nimbin Laneboys protest outside Lismore Courthouse on Monday morning.
Supporters of the Nimbin Laneboys protest outside Lismore Courthouse on Monday morning.

Mr Balderstone said the arrests made during Strike Force Cuppa had a major impact on "our tight-knit alternative community".

"Most of the 'laneboys' are now not allowed to talk to each other or live near Nimbin," he said.

"Whatever you think, they are 'our' boys, young men who grew up in this tight-knit, close community.

"They went to school together, play football together, and many of them work together now.

"And many of them have families and children in Nimbin.

"What are the real consequences of these restrictions, who's thinking it through?

"And in a time when the medical properties of cannabis are finally getting recognised.

"Cannabis is thoroughly woven into all the North Coast communities alternative thinking, not just Nimbin, and it's integral in the new ideas and inspiration that make us different."



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