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Venture capital eyes legal cannabis sector —warily

Posted on April 25th, 2017 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , , , , , , .

leafIt is certainly a sign of the times that a partnership of major California media—led by Bay Area News Group, owner of the San Jose Mercury News—has launched a website entitled The Cannifornian, "Covering the Golden State of Cannabis." That means it's dedicated to reportage on the fast-growing cannabis sector in post-legalization California. An April 25 offering, "Venture capital investors betting big on cannabis," notes that financial consultancy firm New Frontier Data is predicting nationwide legal cannabis sales will balloon to more than $24 billion by 2025.

Sessions pledges crackdown on Latin gangs

Posted on April 21st, 2017 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , , , , .

Shadow WatchAttorney General Jeff Sessions, speaking to the Justice Department's Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) on April 18, pledged that the Trump administration will have "zero tolerance for gang violence" from "transnational criminal organizations"—particularly singling out MS-13, the Central American narco-network that has its roots on the streets of Los Angeles.

Wisconsin legalizes CBD extract

Posted on April 19th, 2017 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , .

medical marijuanaWisconsin became the latest state to pass a strictly limited semblance of a medical marijuana law on April 18 as the arch-conservative Gov. Scott Walker signed Senate Bill 10, allowing patients to receive cannabidiol (CBD) extract from a physician or pharmacy with a prescription. The law, already passed by both houses of the legislature, takes effect immediately. It passed the Senate with only one dissenting vote, pointing to widespread support for the measure in the Badger State.

Rainbow flag creator Gilbert Baker dead at 65

Posted on April 13th, 2017 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , .

Gilbert BakerGay pioneer and artist Gilbert Baker, famous as creator of the iconic Rainbow Flag, died in his sleep at age 65 on March 31 at his home in Manhattan. Baker's first flag was an eight-colored banner that flew above the 1978 Pride festivities in San Francisco—then the Gay Freedom Day Parade. Baker, well known for making banners for gay and anti-war street protest marches, created the flag at the behest of his friend Harvey Milk—the gay community leader later elected a San Francisco supervisor, and assassinated that November. The flag has since become a global symbol of the LGBT community—raised at pride festivals worldwide, and forever flying over the corner of Castro and Market streets.

Global execution stats: good news, bad news

Posted on April 13th, 2017 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , .

nooseThe latest annual Amnesty International report on global use of the death penalty actually has some heartening news. For the first time since 2006, the United States did not make the top five executioners in 2016—falling to seventh, behind Egypt. The 20 executions in the US constituted the lowest number in the country since 1991. Most executions last year took place in China, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Pakistan—in that order. And after three years in a row of global executions surging, they appear to have dropped off in 2016. Not including data from China, Amnesty counts 1,032 executions throughout the world in 2016—more than 600 fewer than in 2015.

IRS forfeits totally legal money: investigation

Posted on April 10th, 2017 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , .

Shadow WatchAn investigation by the US Treasury Department's Inspector General for Tax Administration, launched under pressure of litigation brought by the libertarian-leaning Institute for Justice, maddeningly finds that the Internal Revenue Service has been using asset forfeiture to confiscate millions of dollars from businesses that committed no crimes. The libertarian-oriented website Reason breaks it down in detail, stating that "between 2012 and 2014, IRS investigators seized hundreds of bank accounts from business owners based on nothing but a suspicious pattern of deposits. In more than 90 percent of those cases, the money was completely legal."

Supreme Court gives judges leeway in mandatory minimum cases

Posted on April 10th, 2017 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , .

SCOTUSThe US Supreme Court on April 4 handed down a unanimous decision in Dean v. United States, giving federal judges greater flexibility in mandatory minimum cases—an aim activists have long been demanding. Advocacy group Families Against Mandatory Minimums filed a brief in support of the petitioner in the case.

New York high court: cops can seize user Facebook activity

Posted on April 10th, 2017 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , .

Shadow WatchBe careful what you say on Facebook. New York state's highest court, the Court of Appeals, ruled on April 4 that law enforcement can seize private account information from the social networking site. With the decision, Facebook lost its years-long legal battle to block search warrants from the Manhattan District Attorney's Office seeking access to hundreds of user accounts, the New York Post reports.

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