Federal Marijuana Prosecutions Keep Declining In Era Of Legalization, Chief Justice Reports

Federal Marijuana Prosecutions Keep Declining In Era Of Legalization, Chief Justice Reports

While federal prosecutions of drug-related crimes increased in 2019, cases involving marijuana dropped by more than a quarter, according to an end-of-year report released by Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts on Tuesday. The annual report, which looks at data on federal court actions during the 2019 fiscal year ending September 30, reflects an ongoing trend. Last year’s summary similarly showed a slight uptick in prosecutions of drug crimes, with declining cannabis cases. “Drug crime defendants, who accounted for 28 percent of total filings, grew five percent, although defendants accused of crimes associated with marijuana decreased 28 percent” in district courts, Roberts reported. The overall number of criminal case proceedings increased by six percent, to 92,678. While the report doesn’t speculate about possible reasons for the cannabis-related decline, advocates see it as a reflection of the impact of state-level legalization efforts. They argue that if more adults are engaging in state-legal activity and obtaining cannabis from licensed dispensaries—which have become lower enforcement priorities for federal prosecutors—it makes sense that there’d be fewer marijuana cases going through federal courts as the market for illegally smuggled marijuana wanes. Marijuana sales launched in California in January 2018, Nevada opened its first retail shops…

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Source : MJ moment
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