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DEA will not reclassify marijuana; Pot remains a schedule I controlled substance

Posted: 10:05 AM, Aug 11, 2016
Updated: 2016-08-11 19:48:37-04

WASHINGTON -- The Drug Enforcement Administration will not reclassify marijuana and remove it from the list of the most dangerous drugs.

The DEA has denied two petitions to reschedule marijuana under the Controlled Substances Act (CSA).

"Based on the legal standards in the CSA, marijuana remains a schedule I controlled substance because it does not meet the criteria for currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States, there is a lack of accepted safety for its use under medical supervision, and it has a high potential for abuse," the DEA said in a news release sent to Denver7.

"The DEA’s refusal to remove marijuana from Schedule I is, quite frankly, mind-boggling," Marijuana Policy Project spokesperson Mason Tvert said. "It is intellectually dishonest and completely indefensible. Not everyone agrees marijuana should be legal, but few will deny that it is less harmful than alcohol and many prescription drugs. It is less toxic, less addictive, and less damaging to the body."

 Bonnie Amaya says she and her family have reaped the benefits of medical marijuana.

“I have used it to cure skin cancer that has completely gone away and my mother uses it for arthritis,” said Bonnie Amaya. 

The DEA said it will allow clinical trials involving marijuana.

"The DEA and the FDA continue to believe that scientifically valid and well-controlled clinical trials conducted under investigational new drug (IND) applications are the most appropriate way to conduct research on the medicinal uses of marijuana," officials said.

Currently only researchers at the University of Mississippi have the government's permission to grow pot. 

Read more about the DEA's decision here and here . The documents will be published Friday, but there is a pre-publication version available now.

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