New Report: The US Border Patrol Hates Stoners

The US Border Patrol hates stoners. How do we know? Because a new report by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) reveals that Border Patrol Agents spend a majority of their time hassling US citizens for small amounts of herb—instead of going after smugglers who are importing huge shipments of fentanyl and coke.

According to the report, border police made 17,960 separate drug seizures at border checkpoints between 2016 and 2020. A whopping 91 percent of all those seizures involved US citizens and 75 percent of them were just for cannabis. And get this—among all Americans busted for weed at the border, 69 percent of ‘em had less than an ounce.

In 2016, the Border Patrol seized just over 70,000 pounds of weed, but that figure dropped to nearly 31,000 pounds by 2020. During that same time period, meth seizures doubled from nearly 6,000 pounds to over 12,000. Fentanyl seizures grew eightfold from 52 to 405 pounds.

At the beginning of this year, Border Patrol agents in Rio Grande Valley (RGV) interdicted two narcotic smuggling attempts resulting in the seizure of more than 600 pounds of marijuana. According to a report in January, Brownsville Border Patrol Station agents received information of a Chevrolet Tahoe possibly “loaded” with narcotics. They located a vehicle matching the description at a retail store parking lot. As agents approached, the single occupant fled from the driver’s seat. Agents never located the driver but found 360 pounds of weed in the truck.

Don’t be fooled into thinking that Border Patrol agents just bust people at the US borders. In April Agents seized close to $2M in marijuana at stash house that was located near a border.

According to CBS news, the bust resulted from an interagency collaboration between Laredo Sector agents, CBP Air and Marine Operations, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), Texas Department of Public Safety, and Webb County Constable’s Office Precinct 2. Through a coordinated effort, a search of the residence resulted in the seizure of more than 100 bundles of marijuana, which weighed over 2,300 lbs.

Oddly enough many Americans who were busted at the border were caught bringing weed into a state where adult-use cannabis is actually legal. Thanks to federal prohibition, border police still reserve the right to bust anyone for weed—even if they are bringing it across the border from Canada to a state where it’s legal like New York. 

“Border Patrol officials from all selected checkpoints we met with told us that U.S. Attorney’s offices in their sector generally do not prosecute people for possessing personal use quantities of marijuana,” the report states. “In such cases, people from whom marijuana is seized may be referred to state or local authorities for criminal investigation or released.”

What’s worse is a recent Supreme Court ruling that gives Border Patrol agents the right to make cannabis arrests without warrants in most adult-use states. It also lets them violate the 4th Amendment rights of any American living within 100 miles of the border.

Because most legal states are on the US border the court’s new ruling technically allows border cops to arrest people for weed at traffic checkpoints in California, New York, and nearly every other adult-use state. That’s not stuff stoners like at all. 

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