Fed. Prosecutor: No Immunity For Legal Pot Businesses

BOSTON (AP/WBZ-AM) - The top federal prosecutor in Massachusetts is offering no assurances that he will take a hands-off approach to legalized pot in the state.

U.S. Attorney Andrew Lelling said in a statement released Monday that he cannot and would not offer blanket immunity to what he termed "participants in the state-level marijuana trade."

"I understand that there are people and groups looking for additional guidance from this office about its approach to enforcing federal laws criminalizing marijuana cultivation and trafficking," he wrote. "I cannot, however, provide assurances that certain categories of participants in the state-level marijuana trade will be immune from federal prosecution."

Lelling said it was a "straightforward rule of law issue."

He said it was clear that Congress made growing, distributing, and possessing pot a federal crime, so it will be up to him to decide whether to pursue those who commit that crime on a case-by-case basis.

The prosecutor was responding to a request from supporters of the state's recreational marijuana law.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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