The newly assigned chief of the Drug Enforcement Agency, Chuck Rosenberg, said that the DEA will no longer make marijuana a priority and that sellers and users would not be attacked as much as they have been. Rosenberg formally worked as an administrator in the FBI. He was given a glowing approval by Attorney General Lorette Lynch who said that Rosenberg was a “skilled problem-solver” and an “exceptional leader”.
Former DEA Chief Michele Leonhart recently resigned amidst a prostitution scandal
Former DEA chief Michele Leonhart resigned last April amidst allegations that DEA agents were involved in a prostitution scandal. Although it took this scandal to force Leonhart’s resignation, the DEA had been involved in numerous known offenses including both unethical and outright illegal activities under Leonhart’s leadership which first began in November of 2007.
For instance, in May of 2012 a drug sting by the DEA in Honduras resulted in four people being shot dead including a 14 year old child and 2 women. Witnesses say that the victims were innocent. In August 2013, it was revealed that the DEA had obtained information from mass surveillance and wiretaps in order to make local arrests. The DEA was also said to be coaching police to hide the source of the information in some cases.
Leonhart was known for her anti-marijuana views in the war on drugs
Leonhart was known for her strong anti-marijuana views in spite of the drug being legalized for medicinal or recreational use in several states in recent years and plenty of scientific evidence pointing to its legitimacy for medical use. She stood by marijuana’s classification as a Schedule I controlled substance which is the category reserved for drugs which supposedly have the highest abuse potential and “no acceptable medical use”.
The shift to new leadership could possibly pave the way for marijuana to be reclassified under a different Schedule. It is not clear how much the war on marijuana will be scaled back, but many predict that the DEA’s “War on Drugs” is far from over.
Heroin, cocaine and other drug users may be prosecuted more frequently
Although it’s a small victory for marijuana users, heroin, cocaine, psychedelics and other drug offenses may be prosecuted more frequently. The DEA has to earn their revenue and its War on Drugs is not expected to slow down anytime soon. With most other drugs still being prohibited, organized crime will continue to profit from them and the constant cycle of violence and crime surrounding these drugs is expected to continue in the U.S. and surrounding countries.