Marijuana advocates today circulated a transcript of a memo that appears to define U.S. Department of Justice guidelines for marijuana growing and possession prosecution targets.
In other words they got their hands on the blueprint for what it takes to get the DOJ to crackdown on your farm or dispensary.
The threshold for prosecutors' interest, according to the document, includes:
-200 or more kilos of pot for distribution prosecution.
-1,000 or more plants on private land plus a factor such as a connection to organized crime or out-of-state distribution, for cultivation prosecution.
Pot supporters aren't sure exactly when the memo was issued but they indicate it was probably within the last year and well before a recent crackdown on medical marijuana by U.S. Attorneys in California.
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The document doesn't dispute the attorney's rationale or foreshadow it, but it does provide some guidelines for those in the business who want to avoid the long arm of the Obama administration.
"The memo looks like what I would have suspected federal guidlelines were all along before the crackdown," Dale Gieringer, state coordinator of California NORML, told the Weekly today. "It's a useful indicator."
But Gieringer warned medical growers that having 199 kilos or 999 plants won't necessarily protect them from prosecution. He said the DEA marches to its own drummer on that stuff: "DEA raids don't necessarily conform with this," he said.