A bipartisan coalition of lawmakers has reintroduced legislation that aims to protect state-authorized medical marijuana patients and their providers from federal prosecution.
House Bill 6134, The Truth in Trials Act, provides an affirmative defense in federal court for defendants whose actions were in compliance with the medical marijuana laws of their state.
Seventeen states -- Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Maine, Michigan, Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, Nevada, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington -- have enacted laws protecting medical marijuana patients and their providers from state prosecution. Yet in all of these states, patients and providers still face the risk of federal sanction -- even if their activities are fully compliant with state law.
Passage of the Truth in Trials Act would codify legal protections for defendants caught between state and federal laws, ensuring that they can cite state law as a legal defense in federal trials.
It states: "Any person facing prosecution or a proceeding for any marijuana-related offense under any Federal law shall have the right to introduce evidence demonstrating that the marijuana-related activities for which the person stands accused were performed in compliance with State law regarding the medical use of marijuana."
HR 6134 is now before the House Committee on the Judiciary. Please write your members of Congress today and tell them to protect state-authorized medical marijuana patients and their providers. For your convenience, a prewritten letter will be e-mailed to your member of Congress when you visit NORML's Take Action Center here:
Thank you for assisting NORML's federal law reform efforts.
The NORML Team