Seeking to underscore their argument that the War on Drugs is often just a war on marijuana, pro-decriminalization forces today highlighted new FBI statistics showing nearly half (49.5 percent) of the nation's drug arrests are cannabis-related.

More than 8 out of 10 arrests were for “possession only,” notes Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP).

That's a lot of manpower and cash going toward policing pot. Says LEAP:

… Police in the U.S. arrest someone for marijuana every 42 seconds and that 87% of those arrests are for possession alone.

The good news is that the drug numbers are down for these latest figures, just released by the FBI, when compared to years' past.

Credit: Troy Holden / Flickr

Credit: Troy Holden / Flickr

LEAP's Neill Franklin, a former narcotics cop, says:

Even excluding the costs involved for later trying and then imprisoning these people, taxpayers are spending between one and a half to three billion dollars a year just on the police and court time involved in making these arrests. That's a lot of money to spend for a practice that four decades of unsuccessful policies have proved does nothing to reduce the consumption of drugs.

Check out the FBI stats here.

[@dennisjromero / / @LAWeeklyNews]

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