Colorado NORML’s Comment on the Federal Marijuana Raids in Colorado

November 24, 2013

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Media Contacts:

Statewide or Denver: Lauren Davis, Esq., 720-279-8810 x 1

Alternate Contact: Rachel K. Gillette, Esq., 303-665-0860

November 24, 2013

Colorado NORML’s Comment on the Federal Marijuana Raids in Colorado

Denver, CO – While we cannot speculate on what prompted the Federal Government to raid several businesses in Denver, Boulder, and Nederland on November 21, 2013, Colorado NORML believes the timing of these raids is not coincidental. The Federal law enforcement action, in coordination with the IRS’s Criminal Investigations Division, has undoubtedly struck fear in the hearts of legal, compliant, State-licensed marijuana business owners a mere six weeks before many will begin retail sale to adults 21 and older in Colorado.

The failure of the DOJ to provide more detailed information, as to what prompted these raids, or to specifically state which of the eight federal law enforcement priorities these raids are based on, is unfortunate. We can only hope that the federal government will keep its promise to respect the rights of a state where the people have determined that the regulation and taxation of marijuana is a better alternative to prohibition and the failed Drug War.

These raids again highlight the need for Congress to proactively address the conflicts between State and federal marijuana laws and the most urgent need for our government to reschedule marijuana into a more appropriate classification under the Controlled Substances Act. Unfortunately, the current conflict between state and federal marijuana laws, the sad failure of our federal government to recognize the obvious medicinal value of marijuana, and the federal government’s denial of access to banking and deductible business expenses under IRS Code Section 280E continues to have the unfortunate consequence of incentivizing criminal behavior and a black market which not only survives, but also thrives in many states.

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