Marijuana Grow Cases in Minnesota
Criminal defense cases involving marijuana grows can be prosecuted in federal court, or in Minnesota State court. The vast majority of cases of alleged weed growing are prosecuted in State court. One reason is the nearly universal recognition that marijuana, if harmful to health at all, is not as harmful as other drugs; and, the fact that the majority of the United States population has tried it at least once. (Either we are nation of criminals, or we have a serious problem with contradictory, double standards.) In addition, the last few United States Presidents have smoked marijuana, and yet were elected to the highest public office in any event. Another reason most marijuana grow cases are not prosecuted in federal court is probably the sheer number of them.
Minnesota’s Criminal Prohibition of Marijuana
Minnesota State Statutes provide for criminal remedies when sought by the government, for various acts relating to marijuana. The most commonly prosecuted of these are contained in Minnesota Statutes Chapter 152, titled “Drugs, Controlled Substances.”
Until a few years ago, marijuana grow cases were usually prosecuted as possession cases. If you possessed growing marijuana, you might be prosecuted for possessing it. If the government had evidence that a grower had actually sold marijuana, then they could be prosecuted for criminal sale of the malum prohibitum.
In recent years, however, the prohibitionists expanded the statutes to create a new legal fiction – a crime by technicality provision – to turn possession of growing marijuana into a “sale.”
A Rose is a Rose is a … Sale
How did the ingenuous legislature do it? It’s a complex bit of sophistry. Here goes:
- Possession of growing marijuana can be prosecuted as a Controlled Substance Crime of Possession, in varying degrees of severity, depending upon quantity or weight – as has been the case for years.
- The government changed the definition of “Sell” in Minnesota Statutes Section 152.01, subd. 15a, to now include “to manufacture.” Get that? So their claim is that “manufacture” is the same thing as to “sell.”
- Next, in their new definition of “Manufacture” at Minnesota Statutes Section 152.01, subd. 7, they have defined “manufacture” to mean “cultivation” of “drugs.”
So you see, they have by legislative fiat made a law which purports to first define “cultivation” as “manufacture;” and then, in the next step, they presume to define “manufacture” as “sell.” According to these lawmakers – and their lobbyists – cultivation is manufacture is selling. Apparently they believe the have the legal power to turn black into white; and possession into sale. Just think of all the Minnesota farmers and gardeners who now should be able to avoid the trouble of harvest, processing, distribution and sale – once the food crop has grown!
“When I use a word, it means just what I choose it to mean – neither more nor less.”
– Humpty Dumpty
This is the kind of irrationality the drug prohibitionists have put into Minnesota law. Should we allow a person to be convicted of a crime on a technicality? Should we allow a person’s life to be ruined by overreaching, nonsense laws?
Another Failure in the Government’s War on the People.
In the past couple decades Prohibitionist government officials have put out Reefer Madness propaganda campaigns asserting that buying marijuana on the black market was tantamount to supporting terrorism overseas. As the government gained some success in reducing the importation of marijuana into the United States, a funny thing happened. Economist Milton Friedman was right: marijuana became the number one cash crop in United States agriculture (and still is). It is easy to grow as well. The government’s drug wars against The People are a complete and unmitigated failure. The government just won’t admit it yet.
In the meantime, Minnesota Marijuana Lawyer Thomas C Gallagher is here to help people busted for growing in the final days.