Officials Try To Make Federal Case Against Pot

Officials Try To Make Federal Case Against Pot
Posted by CN Staff on November 20, 2006 at 07:40:35 PT
By Dylan Darling, Record Searchlight
Source: Record Searchlight
Calif. -- As soon as north state law enforcement teams learn the whereabouts of illegal marijuana gardens, they start planning their raids. Often supported by federal grants  and sometimes National Guard troops  the officers don camouflage gear and hiking boots before invading pot plantations. The officers say their motivation for the raids is threefold  stop illegal activity, halt damage to the environment and protect the public.
"The longer those things (marijuana) stay out there, the more likely it is that some citizen is going to stumble into it," said Alan Foster, a special agent with the National Park Service who works out of the Whiskeytown National Recreation Area. But, by their accounts, there are still acres and acres of pot that get processed and make it past police. The estimate of how much marijuana that agencies keep off the streets depends on who you ask. Some say they think they're catching 20 percent, others 30 percent. Others don't offer a guess, saying that if the officials knew exactly how much pot was really out there, they'd be raiding all those gardens. A similarly low, but more defined, percentage is the number of pot growers police arrest in their raids. About "20 percent of the time we make arrests," said Ross Butler, assistant special agent-in-charge at the U.S. Bureau of Land Management's Sacramento office. Those who are arrested on suspicion of growing pot don't always end up serving hard time, said Jerry Benito, Shasta County district attorney. In California, the maximum penalty for growing marijuana is three years in a state prison, a $10,000 fine or both. "Whether you are growing one plant or 5,000, the penalty is the same -- it's three years," Benito said. If they behave, state convicts are often released after serving half their sentence, meaning they serve 18 months, he said. Because of the disparity in penalties, Benito said he refers the biggest marijuana-cultivation cases to federal prosecutors. Federal rules on marijuana are more strict -- with sentences starting at five years in federal prison for growing 100 plants, and 10 years for 1,000 plants. The sentences get longer if the growers are armed and if they have a criminal record, said McGregor Scott, U.S. attorney for California's eastern district and former Shasta County district attorney. He said he doesn't know the conviction rate for those charged with marijuana cultivation because his office lumps all narcotics cases together, but said he's confident that most who are charged with the crime go to prison. "Nobody (in his office) can recall a time when we didn't gain a conviction when we prosecuted someone for a big marijuana grow," Scott said. He said his office mostly handles cases involving thousands of plants grown on federally managed land. "When you got these huge marijuana gardens by these guys, you want to get some real sentences," Scott said. Complete Title: North State Officials Try To Make a Federal Case Against Pot GrowersSource: Redding Record Searchlight (CA)Author: Dylan Darling, Record Searchlight Published: November 20, 2006Copyright: 2006 Record Searchlight Contact: letters redding.comWebsite: Article:Marijuana is Big Business in Remote Forest -- Cannabis Archives 
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Comment #4 posted by jasgrave333 on November 21, 2006 at 07:41:53 PT:
Police WAKE UP!
He said he doesn't know the conviction rate for those charged with marijuana cultivation because his office lumps all narcotics cases together, but said he's confident that most who are charged with the crime go to prison. 
"It beggers belief, that these official dunder-heads, could get in power in the first place. I mean come one. Not A SINGLE DEATH from Cannabis.What if all the Cannabis consumers, rounded up all the cops who ate deep fried doughnuts and drank Late or coffee?You american Anti-Cannabis "Law"-officials; are hypocrites!Jason Graves
St Christopher
West Indies
Email: jasgrave333
THC and the Bible; a connection...
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Comment #3 posted by Richard Zuckerman on November 20, 2006 at 16:25:07 PT:
I, too, hate what this country has become! It has become GREEEEEEEEDY for a police state. Of course, this GREEEEED has been going on for quite some time, now. The Council on Foreign Relations wants to eliminate our international borders by the year 2010, which, we should presume means repealing our federal constitution. They probably want to repeal our State Constitutions, which contain the power-to-the-people provision. For example: 1947 New Jersey Constitution, Article 1, Paragraph 2 states that the people are sovereign, the government is there to serve the people, and the people have the power to alter or reform the same whenever it becomes necessary for the public good. EVERY STATE CONSTITUTION has a similar provision. PLEASE FIND YOUR RESPECTIVE POWER-TO-THE-PEOPLE PROVISION IN YOUR STATE CONSTITUTION, AND READ IT CLOSELY BECAUSE IT MAY NOT BE IN EFFECT FOR VERY LONG IF YOU DO NOT BEGIN TO LOOK AT THE PLATFORM OF THIRD PARTIES SUCH AS LIBERTARIAN PARTY AND GREEM PARTY [MITCHELL COHEN SAYS DEMOCRATS HAVE INFILTRATED GREEN PARTY, THOUGH!!!]. DEMOCRATS LOVE THE UNITED NATIONS INTERNATIONAL NARCOTICS TREATIES AND INTERNATIONAL SMALL ARTMS TREATIES, TOO!!! NEW JERSEY IS DEMOCRATIC PARTY HAVEN AND YET NEW JERSEY HAS THE VERY HIGHEST PROPERTY TAXES IN THE NATION!!!! DEMOCRATS ARE NOT MUCH WORST THAN REPUBLICANS, PEOPLE!! IN MY 27 YEARS OF VOTING HISTORY, I HAVE SWITCHED TO THE SPOILERS, LIBERTARIAN PARTY AND GREEN PARTY POLITICAL CANDIDATES ONLY!!! Have you people read the article entitled "Growing pot in the attic, a dog's nose and privacy," by James J. Kilpatrick, kilpatjj, in the Staten Island Advance, November 17, 2006, page A25, about the pending petition for certiorari in the United States Supreme Court entitled FLORIDA V. RABB, a dog sniffing case in which the lower courts granted the motion to suppress and the prosecutor is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to take the case to decide whether the lower courts properly utilized the court decisions on thermal imaging to strike down a dog sniff of the front door of the suspect's house? Florida v. Rabb, perhaps mentioned in, type the name in the search black, then click to download.I'm awaiting the decision of Part C of the Appellate Division of the Superior Court of New Jersey as to whether a private citizen has a protected Right to be free from Retaliatory Prosecution by police under the State Constitutional free speech provision. The U.S. Supreme Court established this over 30 years ago, in the Mt. Healthy decision. I want the State Courts to develop State Constitutional jurisprudence so we do not rely upon the less protective federal court decisions!!!!Richard Paul Zuckerman, Post Office Box 159, Metuchen, New Jersey, 08840-0159, (Cell telephone number)(848) 250-8879.
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Comment #2 posted by HempWorld on November 20, 2006 at 08:26:42 PT
Nobody can stop this! Let it grow!
So exactly how much money has been spend to try and eradicate Marijuana for 70 years? How many lives have been lost? All for nothing because this is unstoppable!
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Comment #1 posted by unkat27 on November 20, 2006 at 07:54:37 PT
I Hate what the US has Become: A Fascist State
As long as the government has the power and the lawful right on its side to violate people's rights and physically abuse them in that process, while the people themselves are denied the right to defend themselves, the fascists win and the people lose.The people are losing and the fascists are winning and I am sick of it all. I don't know how much more of it i can take. I hate what the USA has become. I hate it.
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