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Medical Marijuana Raids on State-Sanctioned Programs to End

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Raids on legitimate medical-marijuana dispensaries — common during the Bush administration — will end in states like California and Oregon where use of the drug is legal for medical purposes, according to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder.

The New York Times reported March 19 that Holder said that enforcement efforts would focus instead on drug dealers who fraudulently set up medical-use programs as a shield for illicit sales.

Under the Bush administration, federal agents often raided programs that were in compliance with state medical-marijuana statutes but violated federal drug laws, which prohibit all marijuana sales. Holder said that programs that operated in accordance with state laws would not be an enforcement priority for the U.S. Justice Department.

Holder's remarks “seem to finally end the policy war over medical marijuana,” said Graham Boyd, director of the American Civil Liberties Union's drug-law project. A dozen U.S. States currently allow marijuana to be used for medical purposes.

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