Montana

Another Montana cultivator convicted by feds

Posted on January 19th, 2013 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , .

cannabisMedical marijuana patient, cultivator and former University of Montana Grizzlies quarterback Jason Washington was convicted Jan. 17 in federal court of two felonies, "conspiracy to manufacture and distribute marijuana" and "possession with intent to distribute marijuana," but was acquitted of another felony possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug-related crime. Washington claimed to be in compliance with Montana's medical marijuana law but, as is typical with such federal cases, was denied a defense. He is facing a five-year mandatory minimum sentence, up to 40 years in prison, and more than $10 million in fines and forfeitures.

Obama administration imprisoning medical users at unprecedented rate

Posted on January 4th, 2013 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , , .

medical marijuanaThe Obama administration's aggressive federal enforcement in medical marijuana states has reached a crescendo this month, with three people being sentenced, two others due to surrender to federal authorities to serve out sentences of up to five years in prison, and one federal trial in Montana currently scheduled for Jan. 14. Two of the three people being sentenced in the coming month—Montana cultivator Chris Williams and Los Angeles-area dispensary operator Aaron Sandusky—face five and ten years to life, respectively.

Montana medical grower Chris Williams' convictions to be dropped

Posted on December 19th, 2012 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , .

Chris WilliamsMontana medical pot grower Chris Williams,  who was sentenced this year to a mandatory minimum of 85 to 92 years in federal prison, will have most of his convictions dropped after more than 27,000 people petitioned the White House for his clemency. On Dec. 18, federal prosecutors agreed to drop six of eight of Williamss charges and dismiss the $1,728,000 in penalties awarded to the government if he waives his right to appeal. His convictions for possessing a firearm in connection with drug trafficking and one count of possession with intent to distribute marijuana will stand. He faces five years on the distribution charge and a mandatory minimum of five years for the firearm-related charge.

Electoral advances for cannabis —but legal battles loom

United StatesCannabis is set to become legal in Colorado and Washington after voters passed historic ballot initiatives on Nov. 6. In Washington voters approved Initiative 502, allowing possession and distribution of cannabis through a state licensing system of growers, processors and stores, where adults will be able to buy up to an ounce of dried cannabis; up to a pound of a cannabis-infused product, such as brownies; or up to 72 ounces of cannabis-infused liquids.. The Colorado initiative actually introduces Amendment 64 to the state constitution, allowing adults over 21 to possess up to an ounce and to privately grow up to six plants—although public use will be banned. In Oregon, the similar Cannabis Tax Act Initiative or Measure 80, failed by approximately 55-to-45% of the vote.

Montana high court: no fundamental right to medical cannabis

Posted on September 13th, 2012 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , .

leafThe Montana Supreme Court ruled Sept. 11 that there is no fundamental right to cultivation, distribution or use of medical marijuana. Plaintiffs in the case sought to block enactment of a 2011 law, SB 423, a more restrictive measure that repealed an earlier law permitting the use of  medical  marijuana in the Big Sky state. Plaintiffs asserted that the new law violates rights of employment, health and privacy guaranteed by Montana's constitution. But the justices did not agree, with Justice Michael Wheat writing: "In pursuing one's own health, an individual has a fundamental right to obtain and reject medical treatment... But, this right does not extend to give a patient a fundamental right to use any drug, regardless of its legality." 

Montana medical marijuana patient dies in federal custody

Posted on August 30th, 2012 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , .

Richard Flor, a Montana medical marijuana patient and caregiver who was sentenced in April to five years in federal prison on charges of maintaining a drug-related premises, died in federal custody Aug. 29. Flor, who suffered from a lengthy list of serious medical conditions, died in a hospital in Las Vegas, Nev., a day after suffering two heart attacks while in transit to an unknown Bureau of Prisons medical facility, according to his attorney, Brad Arndorfer of Billings. At Flor’s sentencing, US District Judge Charles Lovell recommended that he "be designated for incarceration at a federal medical center” where Flor’s “numerous physical and mental diseases and conditions can be evaluated and treated."

Montana: cannabis cardholders fall below 12,000

Posted on April 14th, 2012 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , .

cannabisThe number of registered medical marijuana cardholders in Montana fell below 12,000 as of March 31 for the first time in two years, the Billings Gazette reported April 13. A total of 11,993 cardholders had registered as of March 31 with the state Department of Public Health and Human Services Marijuana Program—after peaking a year ago at 31,522. In addition, there were 421 medical marijuana providers, previously called caregivers, registered with the state as of March 31—down from 4,848 a year ago. The number of physicians who can recommend the use of medical marijuana to cardholders is also down—to 254 from a peak of 365 as of last June. Activists and patients blame federal raids and restrictive new legislation in the state.

Passage of medical marijuana laws correlated with fewer suicides

Posted on February 21st, 2012 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , .

medical marijuanaThe enactment of state medical marijuana laws is associated with reduced instances of suicide, according to a discussion paper published recently by the Institute for the Study of Labor in Bonn, Germany. Researchers at Montana State University, the University of Colorado, and San Diego State University assessed rates of suicide in the years before and after the passage of medical marijuana laws. Authors of the discussion paper, entitled "High on Life: Medical Marijuana Laws and Suicide," found:

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