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Drug Policy Looks For Corrupt DEA Agents

In the wake of many uncalled for DEA scandals and the long overdue announcement that DEA Administrator Michele Leonhart will resign sometime in May, the Drug Policy Alliance placed a mock "Help Wanted" ad in the popular source for Capitol Hill news, Roll Call.  For 40 years, the DEA has given little attention to the fact that it fuels itself on  mass incarceration, racial disparities, the surveillance state, and other drug war problems.  The ad sarcastically calls all applicants who are willing to contribute to the DEA's corrupt ways operating.

The Justice Department’s Office of Inspector General reportedly found that the DEA withheld information and obstructed investigations.  Bill Piper, director of national affairs for the Drug Policy Alliance said, “Our fight is not with DEA agents but with their leaders who have profoundly politicized the agency and opposed sensible reforms.  As states legalize marijuana, reform sentencing, and treat drug use more as a health issue and less as a criminal justice issue the DEA must change with the times.”

Despite the fact that Congress passed a spending limitation amendment which prohibits the DEA from undermining marijuana laws, last May, the DEA boldly seized seeds intended for a Kentucky hemp research program that was approved by Congress.  President Obama, however, only signed the bill into law until the end of 2015.  Two more amendments have been approved by the U.S House that would prohibit the DEA from interfering in state marijuana laws as well.  Executive director of the Drug Policy Alliance, Ethan Nadelmann, stated, “Drug prohibition, like alcohol Prohibition, breeds crime, corruption, and violence – and creates a situation where law enforcement officers must risk their lives in a fight that can’t be won.  It’s time to reform not just the DEA but broader U.S. and global drug policy."