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Aurora couple first to go to prison in connection with large-scale Colorado black market marijuana ring

An Aurora couple was sentenced in federal court this week for their role in a large-scale black market marijuana grow operation, the first people to be sent to prison as part of a massive Denver-area drug take-down announced last year. Huanyu Yan, 54, and You Lan Xiang, 50, received 36 months and 30 months in federal prison, respectively, for growing nearly 900 marijuana plants in their basement with plans to distribute the drug, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said in a news release. The two were found guilty in December of marijuana cultivation following a four-day trial. Read the rest of this story on DenverPost.com.

More than 80% of Denver teens say they don’t use marijuana

Published: Feb 26, 2020, 6:15 am • Updated: Feb 26, 2020, 6:17 am By Tiney Ricciardi The majority of teenagers living in Denver are not using marijuana, according to new survey data compiled by the city. Of the teens who do, the number of daily users has increased slightly. City officials surveyed 537 teens in Denver in 2019 to assess the effectiveness of the High Costs youth marijuana prevention program and released the results Wednesday. Of survey respondents ages 13 to 17, 81% said they do not currently use marijuana. The survey included 18-year-olds for the first time and found 61% of them do not currently use marijuana. Read the rest of this story on DenverPost.com.

Marijuana use is rising sharply among seniors over 65, study says, and there are serious risks

Published: Feb 24, 2020, 9:40 am • Updated: Feb 24, 2020, 9:41 am By Cnn.com Wire Service By Sandee LaMotte | CNN The sweet scent of baking cookies wafting from grandma’s house may be mixed with a more pungent aroma these days. The smell of marijuana. The numbers of American seniors over age 65 who now smoke marijuana or use edibles increased two-fold between 2015 and 2018, according to research published Monday in JAMA. Read the rest of this story on MercuryNews.com.

Letters: Meeting with the enemy demonstrates hypocrisy; Bad for marijuana business, good for criminals; This land is our land; Agree to disagree (2/20/20)

Published: Feb 20, 2020, 10:14 am • Updated: Feb 20, 2020, 10:15 am By Dp Opinion Meeting with the enemy demonstrates hypocrisy This past weekend, Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., secretly met with Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif. Murphy justified this meeting by saying, “I think it’s dangerous to not talk to your enemies. Discussions and negotiations are a way to ease tensions and reduce the chances for crisis.” Read the rest of this story on DenverPost.com.

NFL player arrested for allegedly possessing 157 pounds of marijuana in a rental car

Published: Feb 20, 2020, 9:46 am • Updated: Feb 20, 2020, 9:48 am By Cnn.com Wire Service By Madeline Holcombe | CNN Cleveland Browns player Gregory Robinson was arrested after US Border Patrol agents found 157 pounds of marijuana in a car, officials said. Robinson, 27, and Jaquan Bray, 26, were charged in a federal complaint with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute marijuana and possession intent to distribute, the US Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Texas said in a news release. If convicted, they could face up to 20 years in federal prison. Read the rest of this story on MercuryNews.com.

Colorado won’t stop employers from firing workers for using weed off the clock

Colorado legislators decided Wednesday not to advance a bill that aimed to protect employees from being fired for using marijuana in their personal time. The 10 members of the House Business Affairs and Labor Committee voted unanimously against the bill, HB 20-1089, after nearly three hours of testimony from people on each side. Though the bill would have done nothing to prohibit employers from administering drug tests, many committee members cited the lack of an adequate test to determine whether an employee is intoxicated in the moment — much like a breathalyzer does for alcohol — as a reason to table it. Others thought the proposed change to the law was too broad. Read the rest of this story on DenverPost.com.

Colorado marijuana sales hit a record $1.75 billion in 2019

Published: Feb 18, 2020, 1:10 pm • Updated: Feb 18, 2020, 1:11 pm By Tiney Ricciardi Last year was the most lucrative 12 months for cannabis sales in Colorado since the state’s voters legalized recreational marijuana. Medical and recreational cannabis sales hit a record $1.75 billion in 2019, up 13% from 2018, according to data from the Department of Revenue’s Marijuana Enforcement Division. Marijuana tax collections also hit an all-time high, at more than $302 million in 2019. RELATED: “Where’s all that marijuana money?” Colorado’s pot dollars help schools, but maybe not as much as you think Read the rest of this story on DenverPost.com.

Feds bust suspected Pittsburg/Atlanta pot trafficking ring; alleged money launderer arrested in Bay Area

OAKLAND — A man suspected of conspiring with others to ship marijuana from Pittsburg to Atlanta, Georgia, was arrested in the Bay Area last week on an arrest warrant for money laundering charges, court records show. Alhaji Jewru Touray was arrested in connection with a federal conspiracy and money laundering case based in Georgia. The complaint against Touray says that a confidential federal informant confessed to helping Touray vacuum-seal bags of marijuana in a home on Springhill Drive in Pittsburg to prepare them for shipment to Atlanta. During the course of the two-year investigation, authorities seized more than to $400,000 in cash, according to court records. Read the rest of this story on MercuryNews.com.

Marijuana banking bill gets pushback from Colorado’s Buck, Lamborn

Twelve members of the U.S. House of Representatives, including two from Colorado, are publicly pushing back against a federal bill that would give legal cannabis businesses access to banking services. Craig F. Walker , The Denver PostU.S. Rep. Ken Buck in 2014 (Denver Post file) In a Feb. 13 letter sent to Mike Crapo, chairman of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs, Reps. Ken Buck, R-Windsor, Doug Lamborn, R-Colorado Springs, and 10 other Republican representatives applauded the chairman’s concerns about the Secure and Fair Enforcement (SAFE) Banking Act and urged him to “stand strong” in his assessment of the risks posed by allowing dispensaries, cultivations and other businesses access to the federal banking system. Read the rest of this story on DenverPost.com.

Police found more than 1,400 marijuana plants inside a building in Northern California

Published: Feb 17, 2020, 8:10 am • Updated: Feb 17, 2020, 8:12 am By Cnn.com Wire Service By Nicole Chavez | CNN A man was arrested in West Point, California, after authorities discovered 440 pounds of illegal marijuana inside a building, the Calaveras County Sheriff’s Office said. More than 1,400 marijuana plants were seized Thursday when deputies served a search warrant and found that a large shop building adjacent to a home had been turned into a grow house, the sheriff’s office said. Read the rest of this story on MercuryNews.com.

Making cannabis normal at Oakland’s NUG

Published: Feb 16, 2020, 6:08 am • Updated: Feb 16, 2020, 6:10 am By Rex Crum It takes a lot of courage to start your own business. Taking an idea from concept to reality, and dealing with everything from finding a location for the business, keeping up with inventory, learning about distribution and making payroll can test the mettle of the most-confident entrepreneur. Now, consider doing all of that in a nascent industry that is dealing with all kinds of new governmental regulations, trying to shed a public stigma and is, well, known for the aroma of a certain type of plant. Read the rest of this story on MercuryNews.com.

Cambridge appealing decision after pot shop wins fight over two-year moratorium

Less than a month after Cambridge’s attempt to ban a medical marijuana dispensary from selling to all adults for two years was ruled unconstitutional in superior court, the city announced that it has filed an emergency motion to halt the ruling — a decision ripped by the local pot shop. “The City’s actions in pursuing an appeal reflect a contempt for the Court and the rule of law,” Revolutionary Clinics, one of the shops hit by Cambridge’s moratorium, said in a statement. “Rather than working toward solutions and sound policy that can have a tangible impact, the City continues to play politics.” The announcement comes after a Middlesex Superior Court judge ruled on Jan. 24 that the moratorium on Revolutionary Clinics opening a retail pot shop violated the Home Rule Amendment to the Massach...

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