Created: 29 August 2013
Written by Dr. Robert Townsend
By Michael Komorn,
link to original article
Attorney General Eric Holder informed the Governor’s of Washington and Colorado that the Justice Department will not interfere with the states’ laws which permit the use of marijuana for recreational purposes. This is a huge win for marijuana activists, and big step away from the War on Drugs.
Related: Uruguay Sets Price of Marijuana at $2.50/Gram
The AG sent a memo to the country’s 94 Attorney Generals which outlined what types of activities will still be targeted by the DOJ, highlighting 8 major points that the DOJ still aims to prevent. The 8 points are:
- the distribution of marijuana to minors;
- revenue from the sale of marijuana from going to criminal enterprises, gangs and cartels;
- the diversion of marijuana from states where it is legal under state law in some form to other states;
- state-authorized marijuana activity from being used as a cover or pretext for the trafficking of other illegal drugs or other illegal activity;
- violence and the use of firearms in the cultivation and distribution of marijuana
- drugged driving and the exacerbation of other adverse public health consequences associated with marijuana use;
- growing of marijuana on public lands and the attendant public safety and environmental dangers posed by marijuana production on public lands;
- preventing marijuana possession or use on federal property.
These 8 points are still quite broad, and prosecutors across the country could interpret many of them in ways that would favor their decision to prosecute. However, they will no longer be able to use sheer-volume of sales as the sole justification for charging and individual or entity with a marijuana crime.
Related: Sentencing Commission to Review Minimum Sentencing Guidelines
Though the Obama Administration had said on numerous occasions that federal agents would not interfere with states’ where marijuana use is legal to some capacity, US Attorneys have ignored this call for tolerance and gone ahead with prosecutions of marijuana growers and users, regardless of the directives from Washington.
Related: AG Holder’s Opinion Already Affecting Marijuana Cases
Now that the Attorney General has come out and said that the Federal Government will not interfere with the laws passed in Colorado and Washington, the Governors, and people, of those states can finally exhale knowing that a Federal Lawsuit will not be coming their way.