UKCSC chairman Greg de Hoedt has rejected the accusation that he is a latter day Al Capone running the equivalent of “prohibition-era speakeasies” in an interview with The Times.
“Al Capone was going around shooting people to make money out of alcohol,” he said. “He wasn’t worried about the quality of it, he didn’t care about the lives he was damaging.
“I care about the lives of the people I’m helping, getting them a better quality of life, whether it’s getting them off heroin or helping to ease their pain and giving them a better quality of life.
“If Al Capone did that, then compare me to him. I would rather be compared to a freedom fighter like Nelson Mandela. I’m fighting for people’s rights.”
Michael Fisher, founder of Teeside CSC, told the paper that an increasing number of sufferers of illnesses were coming to inquire about the benefits of cannabis oil, how to grow marijuana and how to produce the oil.
He said: “We have had terminal cancer patients send us final messages saying, ‘You have given me an extra two years to see my grandchildren.’
“We don’t offer advice in the way a doctor would. We advise on how to grow it. We want to work alongside health professionals and medical professionals.”
Michael said that since a recent appearance on a documentary for ITV his membership had begun to diversify and many of his 154 members were older professionals.
With the Home Office issuing a statement this week reminding police to enforce drug laws, Michael said: “I would hope that they wouldn’t just raid us. We liaise with police, we are that open and that out there. My members work for a living, own their own businesses, some are bank managers, some are healthcare workers.”