U.S. Pays $4.1 Million to Pot Smoker Abandoned in Holding Cell 5 Days


The federal government will pay $4.1 million to Daniel Chong, a self-confessed pot smoker caught up in a drug sweep last year who nearly died after federal agents inadvertently abandoned him in a holding cell for five days without food or water, the San Diego Union-Tribune reports. “What happened to Daniel Chong should never happen to any human being on the face of the planet,” said his lawyer, Eugene Iredale. Federal officials agreed to adopt new detainee procedures designed to make sure no one is left unwittingly in a holding cell again. Iredale was told the temporary lockups inside the San Diego office have been equipped with cameras to allow agents to view what happens inside. The harrowing experience for Chong, 25, an engineering major at UC San Diego, began on a Friday night in 2012, when he admittedly went to the house of friends to celebrate April 20, a special date for marijuana users.

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