Oklahoma drug enforcement officers conducted a massive raid of nine marijuana grows operations across the state early Tuesday, targeting criminal organizations that are believed to have transported black market cannabis out of state.
The Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics led the multi-agency operation with more than 200 states, federal, and local law enforcement officers executing search warrants and arrest warrants. The raids also targeted three residences in Edmond, Norman, and Mustang that are believed to have been involved in illegal shipments.
OBN said this raid is the largest marijuana-related raid in Oklahoma history and issued arrest warrants for 24 people suspected of involvement in the black market cannabis trade. Officials believe that the seized plants had an estimated value of $7 million and were destined for distribution outside of Oklahoma.
This raid is just the latest in a series of crackdowns on illegal marijuana operations in Oklahoma, which has some of the most relaxed cannabis laws in the country. Despite this, black-market marijuana cultivation and trafficking continue to be a problem in the state. This latest raid underscores the need for comprehensive marijuana reform at the national level to help address this issue.
Kentucky Democrats File Bills To Legalize Marijuana
Democratic lawmakers in Kentucky have announced plans to introduce a bill that would legalize marijuana for adults over 21. The bill, filed by Senate Minority Floor Leader Morgan McGarvey, Sen. David Yates, and Rep. Rachel Roberts, would also establish a medical marijuana program and expunge past convictions for cannabis-related offenses.
“This is not a partisan issue,” said McGarvey in a statement. “It’s about being sensible on drug policy, creating jobs, and freeing up our court system.” A competing Republican-led proposal filed in January would legalize only medical cannabis.
If passed, the Kentucky legalization bill would make it the ninth state to legalize cannabis for adult use. Several other states, including New York, Illinois, and New Jersey, are also considering legalization in 2019.