After Attorney General Jeff Sessions recent reversal of the Cole Memorandum has paved the way for federal enforcement of cannabis laws. As such, below are some the responses by US Attorneys in those states where marijuana is available for recreational or medical distribution. The theme is similar from all of the US Attorneys which is to enforce federal law where public safety is at the highest risk.
U.S. Attorney Annette L. Hayes Statement on Federal Marijuana Prosecutions in the Western District of Washington
SEATTLE – The following is a statement from United States Attorney for the Western District of Washington Annette L. Hayes:
Today the Attorney General reiterated his confidence in the basic principles that guide the discretion of all U.S. Attorneys around the country, and directed that those principles shepherd enforcement of federal law regarding marijuana. He also emphasized his belief that U.S. Attorneys are in the best position to address public safety in their districts, and address the crime control problems that are pressing in their communities. Those principles have always been at the core of what the United States Attorney’s Office for Western Washington has done – across all threats to public safety, including those relating to marijuana. As a result, we have investigated and prosecuted over many years cases involving organized crime, violent and gun threats, and financial crimes related to marijuana. We will continue to do so to ensure – consistent with the most recent guidance from the Department – that our enforcement efforts with our federal, state, local and tribal partners focus on those who pose the greatest safety risk to the people and communities we serve.
U.S. Attorney Statement on Marijuana Enforcement in the District of Oregon
PORTLAND, Ore., – Billy J. Williams, United States Attorney for the District of Oregon, provided the below statement on marijuana enforcement in the District of Oregon.
“As noted by Attorney General Sessions, today’s memo on marijuana enforcement directs all U.S. Attorneys to use the reasoned exercise of discretion when pursuing prosecutions related to marijuana crimes. We will continue working with our federal, state, local and tribal law enforcement partners to pursue shared public safety objectives, with an emphasis on stemming the overproduction of marijuana and the diversion of marijuana out of state, dismantling criminal organizations and thwarting violent crime in our communities.”
U.S. Attorney Bob Troyer Issues Statement Regarding Marijuana Prosecutions in Colorado
DENVER – U.S. Attorney Bob Troyer of the District of Colorado has issued the following statement regarding marijuana prosecutions:
“Today the Attorney General rescinded the Cole Memo on marijuana prosecutions, and directed that federal marijuana prosecution decisions be governed by the same principles that have long governed all of our prosecution decisions. The United States Attorney’s Office in Colorado has already been guided by these principles in marijuana prosecutions — focusing in particular on identifying and prosecuting those who create the greatest safety threats to our communities around the state. We will, consistent with the Attorney General’s latest guidance, continue to take this approach in all of our work with our law enforcement partners throughout Colorado.”
U.S. Attorney Bob Troyer, District of Colorado
U.S. Attorney Kurt Alme Issues Statement Regarding Marijuana Prosecutions in Montana
BILLINGS – U.S. Attorney Kurt Alme of the District of Montana has issued the following statement regarding marijuana prosecutions: “Yesterday, the Attorney General rescinded the Cole Memo on marijuana prosecutions and directed that federal marijuana prosecution decisions be governed by the same principles that govern all federal prosecution decisions. The United States Attorney’s Office in Montana is guided by these principles in marijuana prosecutions — focusing in particular on identifying and prosecuting those who create the greatest safety threats to our citizens and communities. Consistent with the Attorney General’s latest guidance, we will continue to take this approach in all of our work with our law enforcement partners throughout Montana.”