Thursday, 20 September, 2018

Canada's legal marijuana creates risk for investors at U.S. border

Regional Pot Workers Could Face Lifetime Ban From US News Centre News Border official: Canadians entering US risk lifetime ban for marijuana use | TheHill
Laurie Berry | 16 September, 2018, 20:00

Enenajor said pot users and people connected to the industry are considered "inadmissible aliens" under USA law.

Also, marijuana residue - which can linger inside of a auto - could possibly be detected by inspection dogs and lead to further questioning.

On October 17, 2018 in Canada, marijuana will be legal to buy and smoke across the country. But lying to a border agent also carries the risk of a lifetime ban, officials say.

"There's absolutely no way you can say if you've invested in the is industry you're not going to be allowed into the United States", he said.

The federally illegal standing of cannabis in the USA means that those who work or invest in the cannabis sector in Canada could be treated as though they are a drug dealer or working for some sort of cartel, despite the market being legal for many years at this point.

Typically, travellers will be given the opportunity to "voluntary withdraw" from the border, or they face an "expedited removal". But, the traveller will have the opportunity to apply for a waiver from a lifetime ban, which costs Dollars $585 and requires several months to process.

While almost all border states have some form of legalized marijuana use, it remains illegal under USA federal law, which classifies those who work in the marijuana industry as drug traffickers. These waivers are issued at the discretion of CBP.

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He added, "At a time when public opinion and the culture around marijuana is rapidly shifting, not just in the U.S. but around the world, it is inane for United States border officials to maintain such a draconian and backward-looking policy".

Thousands of Canadians have invested in the cannabis companies, which are publicly traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

"We don't recognize that as a legal business", the official said, adding that marijuana investors from Israel have already been turned away.

In Canada, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said that he doesn't think he has the right to press the USA on its admission policy.

As long as the substance remains illegal at the federal level in the country, the grounds for inadmissibility are outlined in Section 212 of the US Immigration and Nationality Act, which states that anyone who "is or has been an illicit trafficker in any controlled substance", or who has assisted in trafficking, or obtained financial benefit from the activity can be refused entry.

"I certainly won't work to assume or impress upon the USA who they have to let in or not. And I certainly won't work to assume or impress upon the U.S. who they have to let in or not", Trudeau said at a CBC radio station in Manitoba earlier this week. "They have legalized marijuana in a number of their states and we're trying to make sure that travel between our two countries is not disrupted", Trudeau told CBC Manitoba.

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