Danish couple arrested for selling cannabis to cancer patients

Although he knew it was illegal, Claus Nielsen said he just wanted to help sick people

Police in Denmark have arrested a man and his wife, charging them with providing cannabis to cancer patients and those with other serious illnesses.

Claus Nielsen had never tried to keep his activities secret. He has spoken openly in the press about providing cannabis to ailing patients. He said he fully suspected that he might be arrested one day.

Nielsen pleaded guilty, but his wife, who was also arrested, denied being involved in dealing drugs, the couple’s lawyer Erbil Kaya told BT.

More than just a smoke
Nielsen used edible cannabis to treat his osteoarthritis and said that it helped him so much that he wanted other sick people to have the chance to try it out. He said that he had customers who suffered from various medical conditions like cancer, sclerosis and fibromyalgia.

“It should be available under controlled conditions,” he said. “I’m no expert, but I stand by my principles.”

No secrets
Nielsen and his wife, who have both been charged with selling drugs and face a maximum possible sentence of 10 years in prison, want their trial to be public.

“The public is aware of this case so there is nothing secret about it,” Kaya said. “There is nothing to hide as far as he [Nielsen] is concerned.”

READ MORE: Noted Danish entrepreneur’s high hopes over medical cannabis investment

Kaya said that his client knew that what he was doing was illegal, but wanted to put pressure on the state to legalise medical cannabis.

“He hasn’t done it for profit or to be a criminal mastermind. He has been open and honest about it,” Kaya said

The debate goes on
Legalising cannabis for medicinal use has been the subject of much debate.

The health minister, Sophie Løhde, has said that she was considering a four-year-long national trial of legalising medical cannabis, and polls show that the vast majority of Danes support legalising cannabis for medicinal use.