DEA: Marijuana Plant Seizures Spike, Arrests Fall in 2019

CANNABIS CULTURE – Federal law enforcement agents and their partners made fewer marijuana-related arrests in 2019, but seized a far greater number of plants than they did the year before, according to annual data compiled by US Drug Enforcement Administration.

According to figures published in the DEA’s Domestic Cannabis Eradication/Suppression Statistical Report, the agency and its partners confiscated an estimated four million marijuana plants nationwide in 2019 – up from 2.8 million in 2018.

By contrast, the total number of marijuana-related arrests reported by the DEA fell to 4,718 in 2019 – a decrease of 16 percent from 2018’s totals. It was the second-lowest number of arrests reported by the DEA in the past decade. In 2011, for instance, the DEA seized over 8.7 million marijuana plants and made over 8,500 annual arrests as part of its nationwide Eradication/Suppression activities.

Commenting on the longer-term trends, NORML Deputy Director Paul Armentano said: “Following the enactment of statewide adult-use cannabis legalization laws, both DEA-related marijuana arrests and seizures have fallen dramatically. That said, these totals affirm that targeting unregulated marijuana-related growing operations still remains a DEA priority, even at a time when most Americans have made it clear that they want cannabis policies to head in a very

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