Search Results: dea/ (22)

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​The United States has been secretly deploying Drug Enforcement Administration commando squads across Latin America and the Caribbean in recent years, The New York Times revealed on Monday. The five commando units have reportedly been used in Haiti, Honduras, the Dominican Republic, Guatemala and Belize.

The DEA commando program began under President George W. Bush, supposedly as part of the “war on terror,” and has been continued under the Obama Administration. But according to the New York Times article by Charlie Savage, the Administration has expanded the operations “far beyond the war zone.”


​Twenty-five years after crack cocaine ravaged American cities, a new VH1 Rock Doc explores how the drug also transformed popular culture, especially hip-hop. The latest addition to the Emmy-winning franchise, “Planet Rock: The Story of Hip Hop and the Crack Generation” premieres Sunday, September 18 at 10 p.m. ET/PT on VH1.

Narrated and executive produced by Ice-T, “Planet Rock” is the first documentary to focus specifically on the connections between crack and hip-hop. Based primarily on the first-person accounts of four famous dealers turned rappers, the film also widens its lens at times to show how crack changed America culturally, socially and politically.

The federal government refuses to reclassify marijuana as medicine — despite the fact that it has sent Irv Rosenfeld and a handful of other patients hundreds of joints a month for close to 30 years.

​A coalition of medical marijuana advocacy groups and patients filed suit Monday in D.C. Circuit Court to compel the Obama Administration to answer a nine-year-old petition to reclassify medical marijuana.

The Coalition for Rescheduling Cannabis (CRC) has never received an answer to its 2002 petition, despite a formal recommendation in 2006 from the Department of Health and Human Services to the Drug Enforcement Administration, which is unfortunately the final arbiter in the rescheduling process.
As recently as July 2010, the DEA issued a 54-page “Position on Marijuana,” but failed to even mention the pending CRC petition.
Plaintiffs in the case include the CRC, Americans for Safe Access (ASA), Patients Out of Time, as well as individually named patients, one of whom is listed on the CRC petition but died in 2005.

Photo: DEA
No, it’s still not legal, even in the Marshall Islands.

Cokeheads briefly thought on Wednesday that there was a place where their drug of choice is legal. 

But the Republic of the Marshall Islands said it hasn’t legalized cocaine, nor has it created a no-visa entry program allowing unrestricted access to the Pacific islands nation, reports Erin Thompson of Pacific Daily News.
“We do not, have not, and don’t intend to legalize any substance,” said Soye Brown, acting attorney general for the Marshall Islands.

Photo: Frankie Frost/Marin Independent Journal
Lynette Shaw of Marin Alliance for Medical Marijuana dispenses medical cannabis to a patient

​The U.S. Internal Revenue Service is thought to have begun audits on at least 12 medical marijuana dispensaries in California, under the decision that past business deductions are invalid because of a clause in the federal tax code prohibiting businesses that traffic in Schedule I or II drugs from making such deductions on their tax returns.

The move, which could bankrupt every dispensary it targets, is being fought by the Marin Alliance for Medical Marijuana, the first dispensary to receive a final audit decision from the IRS, reports Kyle Daly at The American Independent. (The IRS claims MAMM owes millions of dollars in back taxes.)
Lynette Shaw, founder and owner of MAMM, hopes to strike back before the IRS can deliver more “final determinations” to other dispensaries currently being audited.

Photos: U.S. Marshals Service
Mark Steven Phillips, 62, was arrested in his senior community apartment 31 years after his original arrest in 1979, left.

​After being on the run for more than 30 years, a member of the legendary Miami-based “Black Tuna Gang,” a marijuana smuggling operation, was arrested by U.S. Marshals Thursday morning in a senior community in West Palm Beach, Florida.

Mark Steven Phillips, 62, had been a wanted man for more than 30 years after he skipped out on his trial for being a member of an operation accused of smuggling some 500 tons of Colombian cannabis into the United States over a period of 16 months in the 1970s.
However, according to Black Tuna Gang leader Robert Platshorn — who is the longest serving pot prisoner in American history, having himself served almost 30 years in federal prison for smuggling marijuana — Phillips was definitely not the “Marijuana Kingpin” prosecutors and their obedient headline writers are trying to make him out to be.

Photo: Freedom To Exhale

If confirmed as administrator, we would continue to enforce the federal drug laws.

~ Michelle Leonhart, November 17, 2010

It’s not looking good for marijuana advocates after day one of the Senate confirmation process for Michelle Leonhart, President Obama’s nominee to head the Drug Enforcement Administration.

Acting DEA director Leonhart is nominated to officially fill the position she’s already held for three years, and after being prodded by reactionary Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions, she had no compunctions about pledging to continue to enforce federal drug laws in states where medical marijuana is legal.
Such a pledge is remarkable in view of the fact that just last year, the Justice Department issued a memo instructing federal attorneys to back off on enforcement against medical marijuana patients and providers who are following their state laws.

Photo: FOX6Now

​It’s the feel-good story of the day. About 750 marijuana plants were stolen from a Farmington, Maine law enforcement storage building overnight last week. The storage facility is only half a mile from the police station.

Farmington police officers discovered the break-in Wednesday at 9:30 a.m., according to Police Chief Jack Peck, reports David Robinson of the Central Maine Morning Sentinel.
An overhead garage door had been “pried open” and about three-quarters of the 1,000 marijuana plants seized earlier on Tuesday in a northern Franklin County drug raid and stored in facility that night, were gone gone gone, according to Peck.

Photo: The WEBstaurant store

​Tastes great, but you’re hungry again in 15 minutes.
A Georgia man has been arrested after sheriff’s deputies claim they caught him trying to smuggle marijuana in to an Alabama jail inmate in a container of Chinese food.

Pike County Sheriff’s deputies arrested Edward Ridley, 41, of Cordele, Ga., and charged him Saturday with felony “promoting prison contraband,” reports Matt Elofson at the Dothan Eagle.

He was still being held at the Pike County Jail Thursday on $7,500 bond.
Ridley entered the jail with a styrofoam container of Chinese take-out food, including rice and shrimp, for inmate Vincent Thomas, acccording to sheriff’s department records.

Photo: Robert Platshorn
Robert Platshorn, the Black Tuna, brought a million pounds of Colombian gold to American shores.

​If you were an American pothead in the 1970s, you probably smoked some of Robert Platshorn’s weed. His organization brought in tons of fine Colombian when it was considered some of the best pot in the world. And that’s the reason Platshorn later became the longest serving marijuana prisoner in U.S. history, doing 29 years inside the federal prison system.

Much of the primo Colombian flooding the U.S. marijuana market in the late 70s could be traced back to the Black Tuna Gang, a major smuggling ring which once brought 500 tons of pot into the United States over a 16-month period.
I remember well the sweet, potent buds of Santa Marta Gold that were available in 1977 and 1978. Possessed of a soaring sativa high and mind-blowing expansion in the lungs, this ‘lombo weed became the gold standard of connoisseur pot to a generation of appreciative stoners. To this day, I think of Colombian weed every time I hear Rush or Blue Öyster Cult.