Banquet Speaker Advocates Legalizing Marijuana

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Banquet Speaker Advocates Legalizing Marijuana

By John E. Norblom 

Associate Editor 

Los Angeles attorney and South western alumnus  Bruce M. Margolin spoke of narcotics problems and  suggested that marijuana be legalized in his talk  before a capacity crowd at Sigma Lambda Sigma’s  December Banquet. 

Mr. Margolin who graciously consented to speak  when scheduled speaker A. L. Wirin was stricken with  Hong Kong Flu, is a 1966 graduate of Southwestern  University 

After passing the Bar, he opened a small office in the  Statler Hilton Building in downtown Los Angeles.  By chance, he defended a marijuana possession  case for a $25 fee. From this small beginning he  has developed a very large legal practice. Most of  his cases involved either the possession or sale of  marijuana. 

He now has a staff of attorneys and handles about 50  cases a week. It is not unusual for his staff to have 15  court appearances per day. He estimates that he has  personally defended over 700 cases. 

If possible he never lets his cases get to trial. ” You lose  at trial” says Margolin. 90% of the cases are won on  illegal search and signature issues. 

Many cases are won on the basis of Penal Code  Section 844, which requires demand of entry, identity  and explanation before forcible entry. Mr. Margolin  states, “enforcement of the law should not result from  violation of the law.” The following are some of Mr.  Margolin’s observations from his recent experiences: 

50% of the Superior Court Criminal cases involve  narcotics; one out of every ten high school students  has either been arrested or has a close personal friend  who has been arrested for possession of marijuana/ cannabis; 

90% of all marijuana/cannabis comes from Mexico. 

Mr. Margolin is a dedicated attorney who identifies  with his clients. In his talk Mr. Margolin based his  advocacy of legalizing marijuana on his determination  that marijuana is not physically addicting, and that  most users do not graduate to hard narcotics.