Attorney general signals shift in marijuana policy

Attorney general signals shift in marijuana policy

WASHINGTON – Attorney General Eric Holder signaled a change on medical marijuana policy Wednesday, saying federal agents will target marijuana distributors only when they violate both federal and state law .

That would be a departure from the policy of the Bush administration, which targeted medical marijuana dispensaries in California even if they complied with that state’s law.

“The policy is to go after those people who violate both federal and state law,” Holder said in a question-and-answer session with reporters at the Justice Department.

Medical marijuana advocates in California welcomed the news, but said they still worried about the pending cases of those already in court on drug charges.

California law permits the sale of marijuana for medical purposes, though it still is against federal law .

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