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The history of federal marijuana laws

The federal government first declared marijuana to be illegal during the 1930s. This illegality covered the sale, use and distribution of marijuana. Currently, marijuana continues to be illegal under federal law even though certain states have independently declared the drug to be legal for medical and/or recreational purposes.

The federal act that makes marijuana illegal is the Controlled Substances Act (CSA). This act regulates and classifies all illegal drugs. It also ranks the drugs according to the severity of their illegality and the severity of punishments related to them. Generally, drugs are ranked in accordance with their level of danger and level of use for legitimate medical purposes.

In spite of certain states legalizing marijuana for various purposes, even people living in those states who choose to use marijuana could find themselves in trouble with federal authorities. Those who are growing, distributing or marketing marijuana are probably in violation of more than one federal drug law.

Individuals who are offering indirect services to a business in the marijuana industry could also be in violation of federal laws. Imagine you have a cleaning business, and your client is a marijuana dispensary. You and your business are benefiting from an illegal drug business indirectly under federal laws.

If federal law enforcement officials have arrested and charged you with marijuana crimes, you will want to take your criminal defense seriously. With the aid of an experienced marijuana crimes defense attorney, you may be able to improve your legal circumstances.

Source: FindLaw, "Federal Marijuana Laws," accessed Sep. 08, 2017

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