DEA: ‘We Are Interested In Americans’ Investments In Canadian Marijuana Business’


Reuters / Mathew Sumner

Those US citizens who have grabbed an opportunity to profit off the booming Canadian medical marijuana market may eventually find themselves breaking US laws, as the DEA seems to be tracking potential money laundering and drug trafficking violators.

Reuters / Jorge Dan Lopez
Reuters / Jorge Dan Lopez

The Canadian government passed laws in April making it legal for any licensed company to grow and ship medical marijuana. And while US investors are active in Canada, they are being scrutinized for possible violations of US laws, Reuters reports.

Calling investing in Canada’s marijuana business reckless, risky and potentially illegal, a former US Drug Enforcement Administration official told Reuters the agency is watching American businesses for possible violations.

The selling and possessing of marijuana is still illegal under US federal laws, and while Canada has made producing and distribution legal, using the banking system to transfer proceeds from investments into the US could be a red flag for money laundering and distributing a Schedule 1 drug.



That is two violations of US federal law. I don’t see there is any way around it,” Timothy White, Banker’s Toolbox told Reuters. His company helps banks detect and report money laundering.

Canada’s medical marijuana business, allowing licensed producers to sell marijuana with a doctor’s prescription, is expected to grow tenfold to C$1.3 billion in a decade. There are 13 licensed producers so far, and US investors are keen to get involved.

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