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Pot on Craigslist? Just don’t

Now that over half of the states have some form of cannabis regulation it can no longer be ignored by the federal government. (Photo: Getty)

DENVER — Weed on Craigslist? It is widely for sale in Colorado, but legislation moving through the state Legislature aims to crack down on those who sell marijuana illegally using online ads.

A bill approved unanimously by the state Senate on Monday would make it a misdemeanor to advertise pot if the person does not have a license to sell the drug.

It’s already a crime to sell pot without a license in Colorado, but it’s not illegal to place an advertisement for weed. That means law enforcement has a hard time going after those who skirt the law by posting marijuana for sale by the pound online and hoping police don’t show up to see them make a black-market sale.

Like other legal-pot states, Colorado is trying to crack down on the lingering black market for marijuana as it awaits word on how President Donald Trump’s administration will approach states violating federal drug law.

“If you don’t have a license to sell marijuana, you may not advertise to sell marijuana,” said Democratic Sen. Irene Aguilar of Denver, sponsor of the bill.

There is no official projection of how many people would be charged with a new crime of advertising pot without a license. But Aguilar told the Senate that on a single day in Denver, authorities found more than 690 ads on Craigslist for marijuana, almost all of it likely being sold outside the regulated market.

Under former President Barack Obama, a memo to weed states directed them to try to keep marijuana out of the black market. But the memo had no force of law and could simply be rewritten by the next attorney general.

Republican Sen. Jeff Sessions of Alabama is awaiting confirmation as attorney general and opposes legal marijuana.

Trump in his inaugural address Friday said drugs “have stolen too many lives.” The president did not elaborate on which drugs or how he planned to address the nation’s drug problem.

One more formal vote on the Colorado advertising bill is required in the Senate before it heads to the House.

(You might also be interested in: Illness linked to marijuana spikes in Colorado.)

DENVER — Weed on Craigslist? It is widely for sale in Colorado, but legislation moving through the state Legislature aims to crack down on those who sell marijuana illegally using online ads.

Denver police say three men tried to sell pot using Craigslist

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Three Denver men are accused of trying to sell marijuana on Craigslist after an undercover sting by the Denver Police Department’s marijuana unit.

An officer found a posting on the online marketplace for marijuana for sale. The officer contacted Samuel Rodgers, 22, and agreed to buy 4¼ pounds for $10,000, according to arrest affidavits filed in the case.

The undercover officer met Rodgers on Wednesday at one location and then they drove to Buddy Boy, a marijuana distributor and retailer at 5050 N. York St.

There, they met Harrison Bowman, 19, who said a third person was coming and they “would do the deal,” the arrest affidavits said.

Joseph Jaszczyk, 36, arrived carrying a large, blue backpack that appeared to be full, the arrest affidavit said.

All three were arrested on marijuana distribution charges.

The police department posted news of the bust on its Facebook page.

Jaszczyk was an employee at Buddy Boy and been buying thousands of dollars worth of marijuana from his employer, according to the Facebook post. The purchases were legal through a doctor’s order.

Medical marijuana patients are allowed to buy more than two ounces at a time if they have a designated medical marijuana center and documentation from a physician that allows large purchases, according to the state’s Marijuana Enforcement Division.

Patrick Witcher, president of Buddy Boy, said his company was cooperating with police. Jaszczyk is no longer employed at Buddy Boy, and the company obtained no trespassing orders for all three of the accused so they are not allowed to purchase marijuana from any of the company’s seven dispensaries.

Witcher also said he was embarrassed over the situation and would be meeting with all of the company’s employees to reiterate Buddy Boy’s “zero tolerance policy” for violating state and city marijuana laws.

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