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Show-Me Cannabis Sues NITRO Drug Task Force

Category: News | Posted on Wed, July, 15th 2015 by THCFinder

missouri show me cannabis rolla town hall meeting

On July 14, 2015, Show-Me Cannabis announced the latest in a series of lawsuits aimed at requiring Missouri’s multi-jurisdictional drug task forces to obey state laws regarding open public records and open public meetings. The case targets the NITRO Task Force, headquartered in Grundy County and also operating in half a dozen or more counties in Northwestern Missouri, for its ongoing, unlawful refusal to properly allow Show-Me Cannabis access to open public records.

We’ve encountered a lot of law-breaking among Missouri’s drug task forces, but NITRO’s behavior in this case is in a category of its own. NITRO is unique in its claims to be neither a state nor a federal entity and in its refusal to comply with either state or federal laws that require transparency to the public. They have refused to provide a single document in response to multiple open records requests, and even denied their own existence in a recorded phone call when we were trying to submit a request.

Unfortunately, NITRO is not alone in its disregard for Missouri’s Sunshine Law. Show-Me Cannabis has been forced to file lawsuits against four other drug task forces across the state, bringing the total number of drug squads currently facing lawsuits to 5 of 24. The need for so much litigation to obtain basic public records has raised concerns among leaders in the criminal justice system, some of whom are suggesting that the taxpayer money used to fund drug task forces would be better used to provide mental health services or additional funding for police body cameras.

Read More:http://www.theweedblog.com/show-me-cannabis-sues-nitro-drug-task-force/


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Marijuana Opponents Using Racketeering Law to Fight Industry

Category: News | Posted on Wed, July, 15th 2015 by THCFinder

DENVER (AP) -- A federal law crafted to fight the mob is giving marijuana opponents a new strategy in their battle to stop the expanding industry: racketeering lawsuits.

A Colorado pot shop recently closed after a Washington-based group opposed to legal marijuana sued not just the pot shop but a laundry list of firms doing business with it - from its landlord and accountant to the Iowa bonding company guaranteeing its tax payments. One by one, many of the defendants agreed to stop doing business with Medical Marijuana of the Rockies, until the mountain shop closed its doors and had to sell off its pot at fire-sale prices.

With another lawsuit pending in southern Colorado, the cases represent a new approach to fighting marijuana. If the federal government won't stop its expansion, pot opponents say, federal racketeering lawsuits could. Marijuana may be legal under state law, but federal drug law still considers any marijuana business organized crime.

"It is still illegal to cultivate, sell or possess marijuana under federal law," said Brian Barnes, lawyer for Safe Streets Alliance, a Washington-based anti-crime group that brought the lawsuits on behalf of neighbors of the two Colorado pot businesses.

Lawyers on both sides say the Colorado racketeering approach is novel.

Read More:http://www.hightimes.com/read/marijuana-opponents-using-racketeering-law-fight-industry


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Marijuana may be helping to overcome painkiller abuse in America

Category: News | Posted on Tue, July, 14th 2015 by THCFinder

It’s yet another feather in the cap of those who champion legalizing pot in the US.

 

 

In a working paper published by the National Bureau of Economic Research (paywall), researchers observed that in US states with medical marijuana dispensaries, the number of admissions to rehabilitation facilities for pain medication and opioid overdoses has decreased by 15% and 16% respectively.

 

 

Other studies have looked at the relationship between legal marijuana use and opioid overdose, but this is the first study to track addiction to opioids as well.

 

 

Researchers examined the number of patients admitted to treatment centers in the US for painkiller addiction from 1992 to 2013; opioid-related deaths from 1999 to 2013; and the amount of prescription opioids legally sold to each US state from 2000 to 2011. They found that in states that maintain medical marijuana dispensaries, opioid painkillers are being prescribed at a similar rate to those state without marijuana dispensaries.

Read More:http://qz.com/452209/marijuana-may-be-helping-to-overcome-painkiller-abuse-in-america/


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Obama Commutes Sentences For 14 People Serving Life In Prison For Drug Offenses

Category: News | Posted on Tue, July, 14th 2015 by THCFinder

barack obama marijuanaToday, President Barack Obama commuted the sentences of 46 people incarcerated in federal prison. This follows the commutation of eight people incarcerated in federal prison for drug offenses in December of 2014, and 22 in March 2015. Fourteen of the people who received commutations today were serving life in prison for nonviolent drug offenses.

In taking this step, the President has now issued nearly 90 commutations, the vast majority of them to non-violent offenders sentenced for drug law violations under draconian sentencing laws. President Obama has been under significant public pressure from advocacy groups and family members of people incarcerated for nonviolent drug offenses who are serving long, mandatory minimum sentences.

“We can’t end mass incarceration until we end the drug war. The President’s actions today are welcome, but we need much more action,” said Michael Collins, policy manager at DPA’s office of national affairs. “The public overwhelmingly supports ending the drug war and letting states decide their own drug policies. It’s long past time to rectify the US’s embarrassing record on mass incarceration.”

Read More:http://www.theweedblog.com/obama-commutes-sentences-for-14-people-serving-life-in-prison-for-drug-offenses/


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DEA Monitoring Internet Activity in Colombia, Is the U.S. Next?

Category: News | Posted on Tue, July, 14th 2015 by THCFinder

Dope-sniffing agents with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration are reportedly spying on all of the Internet activity in Colombia, according to a leaked email transmission regarding the federal agency’s surveillance tactics inside the South American country.

Last Monday, an email sent by Eduardo Pardo, who works as a Field Application Engineer for Hacking Team, began spreading on Twitter indicating that the DEA has purchased software that essentially gives them the power to Big Brother home computers and smartphones – not just in Colombia, but potentially in the United States. 

Hacking Team is a Milan-based tech company that provides law enforcement and intelligence agencies all over the world with highly advanced spy ware. The company, while having made proclamations to not sell to nations boycotted by the U.S and NATO, is suspected of doing business with questionable regimes from Sudan to Egypt.

An article published earlier this week in Forbes reveals that since the company has expanded its offices to Maryland, the DEA and FBI has been working more frequently with the company “as they seek to break common encryption across mobiles and desktops.” 

Read More:http://www.hightimes.com/read/dea-monitoring-internet-activity-colombia-us-next


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Illinois approves 1st medical marijuana workers to grow legal pot

Category: News | Posted on Mon, July, 13th 2015 by THCFinder

Sunlight streaming through a glass roof in a rural warehouse will likely soon be feeding one of Illinois' first legal crops of marijuana seedlings.
 
The company that owns the warehouse, PharmaCann LLC, is preparing for a final inspection from state regulators Tuesday. Once that is secured, along with IDs for workers who have passed background checks, Illinois' fledgling medical marijuana industry will finally be able to get down to business — growing pot — nearly two years since a change in state law made it legal and after a series of hiccups in the rollout that followed.
 
Since the state began issuing the worker IDs earlier this month, at least six cultivation centers have been approved to receive them, Department of Agriculture spokeswoman Kristi Jones said via email. The cultivation houses must pass a department inspection before receiving written authorization to commence operations but should begin growing "very shortly," Jones wrote.
 
In March, the state issued preliminary licenses for 18 cultivation centers, whose owners have since been busy overseeing construction, buying and securing equipment and hiring employees. On Friday, the state announced that it had authorized the first two to begin growing and expected to greenlight more in coming days.
 

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