The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration asserts that proposals to legalize marijuana in Colorado are causing an increase in organized crime, but the agency doesn’t have any hard data to back up such statements, reports Colorado Confidential. Pot-legalization proponents are crying foul.
Chief DEA agent Jeffrey Sweetin told CBS Channel 4 in Denver that Denver’s legalizing small amounts of marijuana and a failed state ballot initiative to do the same thing as making Colorado a good market for drugs and organized crime. No data were cited in the Channel 4 story on the reported increase in organized crime. “I don’t think there’s any numbers I can give,” said DEA media representative Mike Turner. “It’s just that the ongoing cases we’re seeing I think reflect the fact that that’s what’s going on.” Mason Tvert of the pro-marijuana legalization group Safer Colorado, says that, “If the DEA were a student submitting a report on organized crime in Colorado, they’d get a ‘D.’ ”