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Global Ganja Report News Blog

Will New Amsterdam be the new Amsterdam?

Posted on August 14th, 2013 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , .

New York cannabisCannabis is a $1.65 billion industry in New York City, according to a report released Aug. 14 by comptroller and mayoral hopeful John Liu, with the potential to become a $1.7 billion industry if it were made legal in the Big Apple. The report is the first official estimate of the city's cannabis market, and the first study to consider the idea of legalization at the municipal level in the nation's biggest city.

Medical cannabis advocates react to Holder sentencing reform proposal

Posted on August 13th, 2013 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , .

medical marijuanaUS Attorney General Eric Holder delivered a speech Aug. 12 to the annual meeting of the American Bar Association in which he outlined a new sentencing and enforcement strategy. Holder said that the Department of Justice is "considering compassionate release for inmates facing extraordinary or compelling circumstances." Holder also spoke out against the indiscriminate use of mandatory minimum sentencing for non-violent offenders. There are currently more than two dozen federal medical marijuana patients and providers who are serving sentences for violating federal marijuana laws, despite being in compliance with the laws of their respective states.

Judge rules NYPD 'stop-and-frisk' policy unconstitutional

Posted on August 12th, 2013 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , .

New York CityA judge for the US District Court for the Southern District of New York ruled Aug. 12 that the New York Police Department (NYPD) stop-and-frisk policy violates the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments. Over the past decade, the city has conducted about 5 million stop-and-frisks, with more than 80% of those targeted Black or Latino. Judge Shira Scheindlin noted: "A lot of people are being frisked or searched on suspicion of having a gun and nobody has a gun. Only 0.14 percent of stops have led to police finding guns. So the point is suspicion turns out to be wrong in most cases." Scheindlin said she was not putting an end to the policy, but would name an independent monitor to help develop reforms to the practice. She also ordered that officers test out body-worn cameras in precincts where most stops occurred. 

Mexico: notorious kingpin Caro Quintero freed

Posted on August 10th, 2013 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , .

MexicoMexico's most notorious kingpin, Rafael Caro Quintero, was released Aug. 9 from Puente Grande federal prison in Jalisco where he had been incarcerated for the past 28 years. He left the facility at dawn, several hours before the release order was made public. The First Appellate Tribunal in Guadalajara found in March that Caro Quintero was improperly tried for the 1985 torture-killing of DEA agent Enrique "Kiki" Camarena, and that charges should have been brought at the state rather than federal level. Federal prosecutors immediately appealed to the Supreme Justice Court of the Nation, which refused to rescind the lower court's decision. The Third Circuit Tribunal, also in Guadalajara, has now followed through by issuing Caro Quintero an amparo—a judicial order barring any federal action against him.

DEA-NSA collaboration revealed

Posted on August 5th, 2013 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , .

DEAReuters reports that it has reviewed documents revealing the existence of a DEA Special Operations Division (SOD) that partners with the FBI, CIA, NSA, IRS and Homeland Security to share information. The documents show that agents are trained to "recreate" the investigative trail to cover up where the information originated—a nod to the supposed firewall between national security and law enforcement investigations. The SOD, launched in 1994 to combat Latin American cartels, has grown from several dozen employees to several hundred. (Reuters, Aug. 5)

Illinois governor signs medical cannabis law

Posted on August 2nd, 2013 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , .

IllinoisGov. Pat Quinn signed HB1 into law Aug. 1, making Illinois the 20th state to legalize medical marijuana. Nearly 40% of people in the US now live in states that have adopted such laws. The Illinois Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Pilot Program Act creates a framework to protect physicians and certain qualified medical marijuana patients from arrest and prosecution. HB1 was passed 35-21 by the Illinois House in April, and 61-57 by the Senate in May. HB1, which is scheduled to sunset in four years, was called one of the most restrictive laws in the country by its Senate sponsor Bill Haine (D-Alton). The new law is set to take effect on January 1, 2014.

Uruguay lawmakers vote up cannabis legalization

Posted on August 1st, 2013 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , .

Southern ConeUruguay’s lower house July 31 approved a bill to legalize cannabis, by a vote of 50 to 46. The bill now goes to the Senate, where lawmakers have assured President José Mujica they have a majority to approve it. Mujica's administration introduced the bill, and his signature is not in doubt. Laura Blanco, president of Uruguay's Cannabis Studies Association said the bill sent an "encouraging" sign to other Latin American nations.  Under the law, citizens will be allowed to  cultivate cannabis in their homes, limited to six plants per household. They would also be permitted to form cooperatives allowed to grow 99 plants. In addition, private companies can produce under the bill, their harvests to be bought by the government for resale to licensed pharmacies. To buy in pharmacies, citizens must submit their names into a  confidential federal registry, and are limited to buying 40 grams per month. In a move to prevent cannabis tourism, the legislation restricts legal purchases to Uruguayans.

Police seize three tons of cannabis in southwest Colombia

Posted on July 29th, 2013 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , .

ColombiaColombia’s National Police announced the seizure of three tons of marijuana in the southwest of the country on July 28. Units of the traffic and transport police discovered the packets of herb in a truck that was stopped at a checkpoint on a road between the towns of Villarrica and Candelaria, respectively in the departments of Cauca and Valle del Cauca. The bust took place on the same route where police this year have carried out operations resulting in major seizures. When inspecting the vehicle the police discovered 47 packages of plastic fiber, all containing marijuana with a total weight of three tons.

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