(RightIsRight.co) – President Joe Biden’s administration is seeking life sentences in some cases for distributing marijuana even though last week he pardoned people with federal convictions of marijuana possession, according to a report.
Last Thursday, Biden announced that he was pardoning any Americans convicted of simply possessing marijuana.
His pardon has not led to any releases since none of the offenders in question are in federal prison. The Democrat president said his move was supposed to help those pardoned get jobs and rent homes.
Even as Biden announced the cannabis possession pardon, his Justice Department is seeking hefty sentences for those charged with the distribution of weed, according to a report by Reason.com.
“[The pardon] is a very fortunate announcement for the several thousand people convicted at the federal level of simple possession, but it still leaves thousands of other federal cannabis offenders facing draconian sentences for larger quantities,” the report said.
It pointed out that last month, the DOJ “successfully prosecuted” a man named Jonathan Wall for “conspiracy to distribute cannabis” and “sought 10 years to life in prison” for him.
“It remains deeply disturbing,” said Wall’s lawyer Jason Flores-Williams.
“While we’re glad that the president is pardoning people for pot possession, really what needs to happen is the decriminalization or total legalization of marijuana so that people like my current clients and people who I’ve represented don’t spend any time of their short precious lives incarcerated in a cage for a plant that I can go buy around the corner,” the defender elaborated.
Flores-Williams added that he represented several more people accused of the distribution of marijuana.
He said “the disconnect between possession and distribution got even wider” with Biden’s pardon because the potential prison terms for the latter category exceed those of homicide, assault, and rape convicts.
The report quotes Assistant US Attorney Anatoly Smolkin as saying during Wall’s trial that “this is not a case about marijuana possession. This is a case about a drug conspiracy to distribute massive amounts of marijuana around the country.”
However, Biden’s marijuana possession pardon has raised the question of whether distribution should be considered a crime.
“If possession should not be a crime, why are we caging people who help others secure access to cannabis?” the report asked.
It noted that more and more stores are emerging across the US for the sale of cannabis which is legal on the state and local level – even though it remains prohibited on the federal level.
“[Biden is] trying to adopt the most politically expedient by which this can somehow be done without fully being done. Federal prohibition of marijuana has been a mistake from day one. Too many people have suffered, and right now the penalties are so radically diverse and unjust,” Flores-Williams commented.
— reason (@reason) October 8, 2022