Tag Archives: marijuana

MS-13 gang member sentenced to decades in prison for role in 2015 murder

From Fox News: A member of the violent MS-13 street gang was sentenced Monday to more than 22 years in federal prison for his role in the death of a gang associate suspected of being an informant.

Jose Andrade, 27, also received three years of probation and will be subject to deportation to his native El Salvador upon completion of his sentence, according to federal prosecutors.

Andrade, who went by the nickname “Inocente,” pleaded guilty in March to charges of racketeering conspiracy involving murder and conspiracy to distribute marijuana.

Prosecutors claimed Andrade was involved in planning the July 2015 murder in Lawrence of a teenager who was wrongly suspected by gang members of cooperating with law enforcement. Investigators said Andrade planned to take part in the killing himself, but could not do so because he was arrested the previous month.

Authorities say that Andrade is one of 49 defendants who have been convicted as part of a crackdown on MS-13 by federal, state and local officials. Of those defendants, 16 have been found to have “committed or knowingly participated in murders.”

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Taxes On Recreational Pot Sales Could Top 35 Percent


CBS Denver: The taxes on recreational marijuana might go a lot higher than first thought. Smokers buying at shops in Denver may pay up to 35 percent in taxes.

Colorado voters will be asked to approve two state taxes totaling 25 percent on all retail marijuana sales in the November election. They may be asked to approve an additional city tax for Denver.

Denver Mayor Michael Hancock wants to add an additional five to 10 percent city tax on top of that. Hancock said the money is needed to pay the costs of regulating the drug.

Critics complain severe taxes would destroy a new industry already approved by voters.

The Denver City Council has until August to decide if the tax question will go on the November ballot.

State tax amounts of 15 and 10 percent also need approval from voters.

You want legal pot? Careful what you wish for…as soon as the government gets its hand on it, they’ll tax it to death!


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Miami cannibal wasn't on "bath salts"

We were told after the horrific Miami cannibalism that the attacker, Rudy Eugene, likely had been high on “bath salts” — the synthetic drug sold as “bath salts” in stores and online, which induces paranoia, hallucinations, convulsions and psychotic episodes. (For more on these evil “bath salts,” see my post, “‘Bath salts’ turn people into zombies.”)
The autopsy report on Eugene has just been released. No trace of “bath salts” was found in his body; “only” marijuana was found.

CBS Miami reports, June 27, 2012:
Rudy Eugene, the Causeway Cannibal who ate the face off a homeless man he attacked along the MacArthur Causeway, was apparently not high on bath salts or any other exotic street drug at the time of the attack, according to a report released Wednesday by the Miami-Dade Medical Examiner.
The news leaves law enforcement officials wondering what drove Eugene to strip off his clothes, attack homeless man Ronald Poppo, and chew off pieces of flesh from Poppo’s face.
Speculation about the cause of Eugene’s rampage on Poppo’s face centered on drugs, specifically bath salts, after police union officials claimed an increase in bizarre behavior among people on the street using such drugs.
The much-anticipated toxicology report released by Miami-Dade Medical Examiner Dr. Bruce Hyma found marijuana in Eugene’s system, something CBS4 News had previously reported, but no evidence of  any other street drugs, alcohol or prescription drugs, or any adulterants found in street drugs. The report said this includes cocaine, LSD, amphetamines (Ecstasy, Meth and others), phencyclidine (PCP or Angel Dust), heroin, oxycodone, Xanax, synthetic marijuana (Spice), and many other similar compounds.
Hyma’s office specifically ruled out bath salts, a class of synthetic drugs that have been known to cause bizarre behavior and overheating of people who use them, two things that made some believe Eugene’s cannibalistic behavior could be blamed on the drugs.
“The department has also sought the assistance of an outside forensic toxicology reference laboratory, which has confirmed the absence of “bath salts,” synthetic marijuana and LSD,” the report said.
“Within the limits of current technology by both laboratories, marijuana is the only drug identified in the body of Mr. Rudy Eugene.”
The news from the medical examiner sends investigators back to square one as they look for what caused Eugene’s bizarre behavior.
Read the rest of the news article here.
That leaves demonic possession as the explanation for an otherwise sane man, who had just spent an uneventful night with his fiancee and had taken no drugs other than pot, savagely attacking a stranger and biting off most of the victim’s face.

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Activist Judge Blocks Florida Welfare Law's Drug-Test Requirement

5 months ago, on May 31, 2011, Florida’s Republican Gov. Rick Scott signed a bill into law which requires welfare applicants to undergo drug testing.
A 58-year-old Navy vet and business executive before he entered politics in 2010, Gov. Scott said, “While there are certainly legitimate needs for public assistance, it is unfair for Florida taxpayers to subsidize drug addiction. This new law will encourage personal accountability and will help to prevent the misuse of tax dollars.” Scott said the drug testing will save Florida $77 million.
Fast forward to October 24, 2011.
The Associated Press reports that a federal judge temporarily blocked Florida’s new law that requires welfare applicants to pass a drug test before receiving benefits, saying it may violate the Constitution’s ban on unreasonable searches and seizures.
Judge Mary Scriven ruled in response to a lawsuit filed on behalf of Luis Lebron, a 35-year-old Navy veteran and single father who sought the benefits while finishing his college degree, but refused to take the test.
The drug test can reveal a host of private medical facts about the individual, Scriven wrote, adding that she found it “troubling” that the drug tests are not kept confidential like medical records. The results can also be shared with law enforcement officers and a drug abuse hotline.
Scriven’s injunction will stay in place until she can hold a full hearing on the matter on some as-yet unscheduled date.
More than two-dozen states have also proposed drug-testing recipients of welfare or other government assistance, but Florida was the first state to enact such a law in more than a decade. Should any of those states pass a law and face a court challenge, Scriven’s ultimate ruling would likely serve as a legal precedent.
Jackie Schutz, a spokeswoman for Governor Scott, said, ““Drug testing welfare recipients is just a common-sense way to ensure that welfare dollars are used to help children and get parents back to work. The governor obviously disagrees with the decision and he will evaluate his options regarding when to appeal.”
Earlier this year, Scott also ordered drug testing of new state workers and spot checks of existing state employees under him. But testing was suspended after the American Civil Liberties Union also challenged that policy in a separate lawsuit.
Nearly 1,600 applicants have refused to take the test since testing began in mid-July, but they aren’t required to say why. Thirty-two applicants failed the test and more than 7,000 have passed, according to the Department of Children and Families. The majority of positives were for marijuana.
Under the Temporary Assistance For Needy Families program, the state gives $180 a month for one person or $364 for a family of four. Those who test positive for drugs are ineligible for the cash assistance for one year, though passing a drug course can cut that period in half. If they fail a second time, they are ineligible for three years.
The ACLU says Florida was the first to enact such a law since Michigan tried more than a decade ago. Michigan’s random drug testing program for welfare recipients lasted five weeks in 1999 before it was halted by a judge, kicking off a four-year legal battle that ended with an appeals court ruling it unconstitutional.

Mary Scriven

In 2008, Mary Stenson Scriven, 49, was nominated by George W. Bush and readily confirmed by the Senate to the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida. The St. Petersburg Times at the time hailed Scriven as “the first black woman to be a federal magistrate in the Middle District of Florida.”
Scriven’s phone number is 407-835-3840.

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