Federal Asset Seizures, Marijuana Eradication Funds Hit Historic Levels

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California's weed users, growers and dispensaries have become a money-filled piƱata that federal and state police are taking eager whacks at, a new report indicates NORML's Paul Armentano picks apart a July 2012 Government Accountability Office (GAO) report: "The Justice Department's asset forfeiture fund under President Barack Obama is the largest on record, having grown from $500 million in 2003, to $1.8 billion in 2011. According to the GAO, the fund paid out approximately $79 million to California law enforcement agencies, the most in the nation, for their participation in federal raids and seizures."

Federal asset forfeitures have hit historic levels, fueling payments to local police for the crackdown
  • David Downs
  • Federal asset forfeitures have hit historic levels, fueling payments to local police for the crackdown

Meanwhile Representative Barbara Lee has introduced federal legislation HR 6335 to shield state-lawful dispensaries from forfeiture — but like all other marijuana-related bills, it's not expected to move out of the Republican-controlled House.

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