420 with CNW — Federal Commission Considers Amending Sentencing Guidelines on Past Cannabis Use

Before states began legalizing cannabis in the late nineties and early 2000s, the plant had been prohibited across the country for decades. Over the years, tens of thousands of Americans were convicted and imprisoned over cannabis-related charges, with a majority of them being people of color.

Even though dozens of states now allow medical and recreational cannabis use, plenty of people are still held back from fully participating in life by cannabis offenses on their records. Hundreds of thousands of people have been arrested for cannabis-related offenses in the past couple of years and cannabis arrests overall make up more than half of all drug arrests across the country.

Amidst the landscape of patchwork state cannabis policies and federal prohibition, the U.S. Sentencing Commission (USSC) has revealed that it is considering making amendments to sentencing guidelines on past cannabis use.

The federal commission recently passed 14 policy priorities for the amendment cycle ending in May 2023. Although the cannabis sentencing item wasn’t included in a previous version of a priority list that was released for public feedback, the item was added and adopted following a mass cannabis pardon announcement by President Biden.

Even though guidelines from the USSC may not be binding on judges, they still have to take the guidelines into account when they make their decisions.

The federal commission is now declaring that it is a priority to consider making amendments to guidelines for the review of defendants’ criminal histories when it comes to cannabis-related offenses. One component of the amendments would make it so that prior cannabis possession offenses are not considered at current court hearings. If the amendment is passed, the effect it could have on America’s criminal justice system could be massive.

Former assistant counsel to the U.S. House Judiciary Committee and a longtime observer of federal sentencing reform proposals Eric Sterling called the addition of possible cannabis sentencing reform a priority ‘good news’. Sterling said that the move was most likely a response to President Biden’s pardon of simple cannabis possession offenses in September.

Soon after the President’s pardon was announced, the USSC released a separate report outlining the demographics of the people who were pardoned. The USSC has also revealed a steady reduction in cannabis cases as more states have passed cannabis policies. This is in its routine reports.

In the near future, prior convictions for simple cannabis charges may be of no concern from a sentencing perspective regardless of whether the commission develops and passes any amendments to cannabis sentencing guidelines.

The industry needs the prohibitionist system to be overhauled. Only then will allied industry actors like Advanced Container Technologies Inc. (OTC: ACTX) be free from improperly being lumped together with companies that deal in marijuana directly.

NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to Advanced Container Technologies Inc. (OTC: ACTX) are available in the company’s newsroom at https://cnw.fm/ACTX

About CNW420

CNW420 spotlights the latest developments in the rapidly evolving cannabis industry through the release of two informative articles each business day. Our concise, informative content serves as a gateway for investors interested in the legalized cannabis sector and provides updates on how regulatory developments may impact financial markets. Articles are released each business day at 4:20 a.m. and 4:20 p.m. Eastern – our tribute to the time synonymous with cannabis culture. If marijuana and the burgeoning industry surrounding it are on your radar, CNW420 is for you! Check back daily to stay up-to-date on the latest milestones in the fast -changing world of cannabis.

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