FINALLY, the federal government is going to allow Californians to buy
marijuana as a medication - 13 years after state voters approved it.
Now, local and state governments must move quickly to come up with
sane and practical regulations for medical marijuana dispensaries.
Medical marijuana was approved for medicinal use in California after
Proposition 215 was passed by voters in 1996. After that,
dispensaries opened all over Los Angeles and enjoyed virtually no
regulation by state or local government. The unchecked growth
naturally led to abuses and to community concerns in places like
North Hollywood, which has more than its fair share of dispensaries.
As a result, in 2007, federal agents started raiding existing
dispensaries and L.A. was forced to put a temporary halt on new ones.
[continues 418 words]
Case Turns Law Enforcement Upside Down
Even in metro Detroit, an area long familiar with staggering levels
of dope trafficking, Inkster cops earned high-fives all around when
they grabbed 47 kilos of cocaine back in 2005.
But now that seizure from a Texas narcotics pipeline -- one of the
largest local narcotics busts this area has seen -- has turned the
regular law enforcement roles upside down, with the state now
expecting to seek felony charges against the cops and the trial
prosecutor. The trial judge also may be named in a criminal warrant
request brought after a nine-month investigation by the Michigan
Attorney General's Office.
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Is anyone really surprised that two years after anti-crime sweeps,
drugs and prostitution still plague Brownsville?
Much like America's war on drugs, Operation Brownsville and its
aftermath have been colossal failures.
Any war on drugs, whether waged on a national or local scale, is a
This is not for want of effort.
The United States alone spends some $40 billion each year trying to
eliminate the drug supply, according to the Drug Enforcement
Administration. It arrests more than a million of its citizens each
year for drug offenses, locking up half a million of them.
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Trace Amounts Now Bring Misdemeanors
People busted with drug residue in pipes and syringes in Cleveland
are no longer automatically charged as felons, bringing the city's
policies in line with other urban areas throughout the state.
Until two weeks ago, drug abusers faced felony possession charges if
caught with trace amounts of drugs in a crack pipe or heroin
syringe. They now face misdemeanor charges, which allows them to
seek treatment through the Greater Cleveland Drug Court.
City officials announced the policy change in November, but it took
about four months to implement it because the courts and
prosecutor's office had to prepare for the change.
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Methamphetamines Highly Addictive, Linked To Violence
Methamphetamine seizures are on the rise in New Brunswick and that's
not a good thing, according to police.
Wayne Jeffery, a Vancouver-based forensic drug expert who retired
after more than 30 years as a police officer, says meth is one of the
most addictive drugs a person can take, trailing only heroin. And
people hooked on meth are prone to violence, both because of the
psychological effects of the drug and the junkies' desperation to get
their next fix.
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Kern County supervisors repealed an ordinance Tuesday that limited
and controlled the number of medical marijuana dispensaries that
could open here in Kern County.
The split vote, with Supervisor Mike Maggard objecting, followed a
long question session with county attorney John Irby, who has tracked
the legal fate of California's controversial marijuana law.
Irby said the dispensaries the board is familiar with -- six were
allowed under county ordinance -- won't come back.
He said the dispensaries are now clearly illegal under guidelines set
by California Attorney General Jerry Brown.
[continues 170 words]
A Bronx narcotics detective was indicted Monday on charges she
juiced the truth about a big pot bust - lies that got the case
against the dealers tossed out.
Detective Debra Eager, a 15-year NYPD veteran, said on the stand
that she and her partner saw two drug suspects toting boxes into a
Holland Ave. apartment.
Eager, 41, said she followed the duo into the building, heard them
enter an apartment and then made an arrest.
Her testimony, however, "was starkly contradicted by video
surveillance" at the building, Bronx District Attorney Robert Johnson said.
[continues 55 words]
The Harper government has introduced legislation that, if passed,
will impose mandatory minimum prison sentences for serious drug
crimes committed in west central Alberta and everywhere else in Canada.
By putting more drug offenders in jail and keeping them there longer,
the government hopes to make communities safer while deterring young
people from getting involved with illegal drugs in the first place.
"These measures are a proportionate and measured response designed to
disrupt criminal enterprise; drug producers and dealers who threaten
the safety of our communities must face tougher penalties," said
federal justice minister Rob Nicholson.
[continues 343 words]
Forget Afghanistan: America is waking up to the fact that it is about
to become embroiled with its own neighbour's drugs war. Mexico may be
the US's second-biggest trading partner but according to a report by
the US Joint Forces Command it sits alongside Pakistan as being most
likely to become a failed state, crushed by cartel violence.
More than 10,000 people have died since President Calderon of Mexico
committed troops to tackle the six main cartels in December 2006.
Beheadings have become a common way of enforcing discipline within
the cartels. Earlier this year Santiago Meza, aka "the Stew Maker",
confessed to having dissolved more than 300 gangland execution victims in acid.
[continues 226 words]
. Washington fears carnage will spread across border
. Proposals echo battles to control mafia
The White House yesterday revealed plans for a crime-fighting
operation targeting Mexican drug cartels on a scale not seen since
the battles against the US mafia.
Washington is dispatching more federal agents and equipment to its
south-western border with Mexico to target the cartels. Among them
are a newly formed FBI unit, to deal with the ringleaders, and
treasury officials who will track drug money. An extra 100 customs
officers are to be sent to the border within the next 45 days.
[continues 442 words]
No New Troops Or Funding in Obama's Plan
The Obama administration announced plans yesterday to move more than
450 law enforcement agents and equipment to the southern U.S. border
to combat Mexican drug cartel violence, but its "comprehensive
response" was also notable for what it omitted.
President Obama asked for no new troops, legislation or funding from
Congress for now, beyond the three-year $1.4 billion Merida
Initiative lawmakers gave Mexico and Central America for
counter-trafficking programs last year and a small amount of stimulus
money for border security.
[continues 677 words]