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Articles Tagged with cannabis

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indoors-light-locomotive-2934282-300x158Curtis Simmons, a 32-year-old man from Elkridge, Maryland, was stopped by two unarmed officials on June 17th, 2019. Simmons was in the JetBlue kiosk area at Fort Lauderdale International Airport in Broward County, Florida. He had a direct flight to Los Angeles at 7:15 PM, having “missed [his] flight the day before.” 

Simmons was approached by the detectives, who were officials of the Narcotics and Money Laundering Task Force. The task force is led by Florida’s Broward County’s Sheriff’s Office. The civil forfeiture report filed for Simmons’ case stated that, after being questioned, Simmons allowed the cops to search his luggage: a carry-on suitcase and a backpack.

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rope-1149730_1920-300x200In January, Denis Palamarchuk, age 36, was driving a semitruck when he was pulled over by police. The truck contained nearly 7,000 pounds of hemp. Law enforcement arrested Palamarchuk on a drug trafficking charge and also seized both the hemp and the truck.

While law enforcement officers believed the material in the truck to be marijuana, Palamarchuk attempted to explain that it was, in fact, industrial hemp. Although cannabis and hemp are closely related plants, hemp contains only a small amount of the psychoactive agent which makes cannabis so potent. Industrial hemp is used in a wide variety of products, including foods, beauty products, and rope. In December 2018, President Trump signed the Farm Bill, which made hemp legal federally.
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Police officers in Rohnert Park, Sonoma County, California have seized more than $2.4 million in cash over the past three years. This haul from civil asset forfeiture seizures is far greater than that of any other agency in the county.

In 2016, officers brought in $1.4 million, which was 25 times what the Santa Rosa police department seized. For comparison, Santa Rosa is the largest city in Sonoma County and as a police force two-and-a-half times larger than Rohnert Park.

Many of the property seizures occurred in a rural area more than 40 miles north of Rohnert Park. This area, a remote stretch along Highway 101 far outside of Rohnert Park city limits, was targeted by police in operations to find illegal drugs. Activities in this area were led by Brendon Jacy Tatum.
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