I plead guilty for political reasons, because I have willingly and knowingly been breaking the laws specifically regarding cannabis, but, not with malicious criminal intent, but in order to find a way forward. I have been a full time cannabis activist for several years participating in the 1999 NSW drug summit, a two and a half month tour we called the "Freedom Ride" around the jails of NSW, I have run the worlds first live webcam in cannabis cafe demonstration model, and various other cannabis related demonstrations, I am totally committed to the cause of cannabis law reform. I am not pleading for leniency, but for understanding of the reasons I feel compelled to do these things. Even though I cannot feel in my heart any guilt, I stand here with my conscience clear as I know I have done what my heart tells me is right.

I do not see the law or the police as enemies, but as being on the same side, both of us striving our hardest to create a safe happy world for ourselves and our children.
I regret having to break the law to in order to have what I, and many others, see as unjust, unfair, and ineffective, reformed, but there seemed no other way. My aim was to take the cannabis trade out of the hands of criminals and into a situation where it could be controlled and regulated. As the law now stands any child can procure any drug he /she has the money for, whereas with legal and therefore regulated drugs such as alcohol and tobacco it is much harder for children to get hold of them
The cannabis cafe demonstration model has been operating in as open a way as is possible, we are in the middle of the main street , our door wide open so anybody can see right in, and a live webcam broadcasting, so that all that happened inside could be seen from anywhere in the world, which is the whole point of the cafe, to show how responsible and civililised a cannabis cafe could be, and to dispel the " Reefer Madness" Propaganda. (Marijuana use causes insanity, criminality and death. Harry Anslinger.)
We have been operating this cannabis cafe demonstration model for almost 2 years, 18 months of that time live to the internet, we have received overwhelming support from local residents tourists and from all around the globe I am paid a small regular wage(I began as a volunteer receiving no pay for six months) gleaned from coffee sales, and it matters not to me how much or how little cannabis was sold, what does matter to me is that people have a safe friendly environment in which they could smoke some cannabis, and perhaps learn a little more about this wonderful plant and its many uses. . It seems to me that almost everyone was happy with what we where doing ( GUEST BOOKS) and how we were going about it
I have regular customers who come in to get their medicinal marijuana, because they have found it more effective than their prescribed medications, and with less side effects , e.g. An elderly lady in her late seventies finds it helps with her arthritis, man in his mid forties who finds it helps with his condition, some of these people are frail and find it hard to buy their cannabis from the street dealers as they are afraid and intimidated by having to deal with criminals to procure their medicine
With our cannabis cafe demonstration model we created employment for 4 people 2 permanent staff and two part time staff, I myself worked up to 70 hours a week, working the webcam on our website, serving our customers coffee (locally grown and processed ) and, if asked, cannabis in small amounts, as the amount seized shows (enough for approximately 20 patrons), to give our customers a taste of " A Nimbin experience." And as they drank their coffee we could educate them about the many uses of the cannabis plant. Besides the recreational use there is also medicinal uses ( I have been using cannabis instead of the opiate based medicines the doctor prescribed for the pain of the cracked ribs I incurred during a break in that occurred shortly after my arrest.) A recent official study of the effectiveness of cannabis in the UK showed cannabis to be very effective in treatment of certain illnesses diseases, and conditions, it even went as far as to call cannabis a "miracle cure" Industrial uses ranging from non THC containing seeds, fibre from the stalks and stems, paper ( 1 hectare of cannabis can produce as much fibre as 4 hectares of forest, and can be harvested several times a year as opposed to some 20 years for trees.
I realised what I was doing was against the law , but , in stead of just criticising and protesting I tried to deliver what I believe to be one of the better solutions to handle cannabis use and trade. Prohibition has only produced more crime as criminals control the black market and use cannabis to also push harder more dangerous drugs. In my 2 years of working in this cafe I have witnessed first hand the dangers, violence, and increased property damage and theft that this has brought with it
I see myself not as a criminal, but as a concerned citizen trying to find his way through a maze of uncertainty and confusion, someone who has seen that something was wrong and is trying to fix it, even though it meant putting myself at risk. I am an activist trying to make the world a better place for all of us.
Dave Cannabis Carroll