Browsing: Smuggler’s Blues

Courtesy of the Pueblo County Sheriff's Office

As we’ve reported, George Brauchler, 18th Judicial District DA and candidate for Colorado Attorney General, opposed Amendment 64, the 2012 measure that legalized limited recreational marijuana sales in the state, and he doesn’t think its passage has done anything to eliminate violent crime associated with pot. As AG, however, Brauchler says he would defend the state’s cannabis laws against threats from the likes of Attorney General Jeff Sessions while at the same time using a new strategy to attack the proliferation of illegal grows across Colorado, many of them allegedly associated with foreign drug cartels.

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In “Mailing Marijuana Out of Colorado: How Likely Are You to Get Caught?,” published circa November 2015, the Rocky Mountain High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area’s Tom Gorman estimated that 90 percent of illegally shipped cannabis packages weren’t being found by postal inspectors.

More than two years later, figures from a pair of recent analyses maintain that hundreds more pot-packed parcels are being intercepted than in previous years, even as our Ask a Stoner columnist suggests that successfully mailing pot edibles out of state is still a snap if proper precautions are taken.

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Retail cannabis industries across the country are reeling after United States Attorney General Jeff Sessions issued a memo rescinding the Cole Memorandum, a 2013 policy that offered protection from federal prosecution for the cultivation, distribution and possession of pot in states where it is legal. In Colorado, the first state to authorize the legal sale of retail cannabis, the response has been quick…and, in many cases, furious

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Since shortly after the 2012 passage of Amendment 64, which permitted limited recreational marijuana sales in Colorado, we’ve reported about alleged pot profiling. Over the years, multiple drivers have said they were pulled over for little or no reason while driving a car with Colorado license plates by state troopers in bordering states on the lookout for cannabis, with Kansas among the most frequently mentioned problem jurisdictions.

Now, just over a year since a federal court ordered that pot profiling in Kansas end, a Denver-area resident tells us she’s recently been stopped three times in the state by law enforcers who apparently became interested in her the second they saw that her plate represented a legal-pot state.

illegal marijuana coloradoCourtesy of the Pueblo County Sheriff's Office

The headline of a post published in this space last year posed the question, “Is Pueblo the Drug Bust Capital of Colorado?” And in recent months, law enforcement in the community has answered this question with a resounding “Yes,” particularly when it comes to marijuana crimes with an international flavor. In a series of raids over the past four months, the Pueblo County Sheriff’s Office, working in conjunction with other agencies, has seized more than 8,000 cannabis plants at allegedly illegal grows associated with foreign nationals. Among those arrested as part of the operations were eight men from Mexico and four from Cuba.

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