http://www.weedbay.net/comments.php?shownews=287&catid=1 A 64-year-old disabled Coarsegold man who uses marijuana for medicinal purposes on the advice of his doctor faces federal drug charges after a Madera County prosecutor dropped his case against him. Donato Canceleno will appear in Fresno's federal court on Friday. He was arrested July 27 -- the day before his state trial was scheduled to begin -- outside the Madera County Superior Court after a county drug crime prosecutor, Michael Keitz, dropped state charges. Keitz did not return calls for comment. In 1996, California voters passed Proposition 215, making it legal for the seriously ill and their caregivers to grow and process marijuana for medicinal purposes if approved by a doctor. In June 2005, however, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the federal government could prosecute people who use marijuana for medicinal purposes. Since then, the federal government has arrested more than 100 Californians on medicinal marijuana charges, according to the California branch of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws. Now Canceleno joins them. If he is convicted, he would face up to 10 years in prison for federal charges of growing marijuana, possession of marijuana for sale and possession of a weapon in connection with a drug crime, said his attorney, William Panzer. Canceleno has a medicinal marijuana identification card and a recommendation from his physician to take marijuana for medicinal purposes because of injuries he suffered when he fell from a telephone pole during the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake. He was an employee at a local telephone company. But Madera narcotics agents said the amount of marijuana seized near Canceleno's property on March 7, 2005 -- including 216 indoor plants and two pounds of processed marijuana -- indicated that he was growing more than the medically legal limit and "cultivating it for financial gain." The search and seizure came after the Madera County Sheriff's Department received an anonymous tip on a narcotics hotline. A scale, three boxes of Ziploc baggies, a loaded revolver and nearly one-quarter pound of processed marijuana were found inside Canceleno's home on City View Drive near Road 415 in Coarsegold. But Canceleno's doctor's note included an exemption from state cultivation limits, partly because Canceleno was growing the cannabis for himself and two other local patients, Panzer said. The average patient consumes about three pounds of cannabis a year, Panzer said. The plants were not substantial enough to produce enough pot to sell for financial gain -- half of the 216 plants were dead, and all of the plants were less than a foot tall, Panzer said. "Mr. Canceleno might have gotten a pound to a pound and a half [of marijuana] out of his whole crop -- a crop for three patients," Panzer said. "He didn't have extra to sell." Panzer said the decision to drop the state charges and let the federal government step in should have been made in 2005, instead of on the eve of the trial. "What [Canceleno] was doing was completely legal under state law," Panzer said. "This is a horrible miscarriage of justice."