"A high-profile Colorado marijuana start-up misled prospective investors and promoted an investment structure that may have violated state laws, according to internal company documents and emails leaked to WeedWeek. The company, Ebbu, subsequently rewarded its investors when it sold its assets in a cash-and-stock deal worth roughly $250 million.
"Publicly available court filings and press accounts suggest fundraising irregularities at Ebbu, but these apparently never attracted scrutiny from Colorado regulators or law enforcement. The situation raises questions about how effectively the state enforces its marijuana investment laws. Ebbu’s story shows why money of unknown origin — akin to “dark money” in politics — could be a significant problem in the fast-growing and federally illegal marijuana industry.
Two associates of President Trump's personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, were arrested and charged with campaign finance violations involving REC business licenses. A federal indictment explains the alleged complicated scheme. 🌴WeedWeek California has more.
Former Texas Congressman Pete Sessions (R), an ardent prohibitionist in the last Congress, who lost his seat in November, is suspected of being among the beneficiaries. Sessions, no relation to Jeff, is now running again in a different Texas district.
CNN 2x, Talking Points Memo, Dallas Morning News
According to the indictment, (Pt. 21), the charged individuals "took steps to hide" to identity of an investor in their Nevada REC business.
My new story, "The Ebbu Files," discusses how some investors with reputational concerns seek to mask their cannabis connections. For at least a year and a half, I've been asking Colorado officials -- past and present -- about this issue. None have been willing to discuss it, or even acknowledge it exists.
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During a visit to southern California, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) met with cannabiz executives and toured at least one cannabis related business. McConnell opposes legalization but was the force behind federal hemp legalization in last years farm bill, a potential boon for farmers in his home state of Kentucky.
Marijuana Moment has the scoop from inside one of McConnell's fundraisers meetings.
Rolling Stone has an update on the vape crisis which has now sickened more than 1,300, and killed 23.
Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker (R) defended his four month ban on the sale of THC and nicotine vape products.
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MedMen's $682M bid for Chicago-based PharmaCann fell apart this week amid industry turbulence and cratering stock prices. For California retailer MedMen, PharmaCann was supposed to be an entry point into the Illinois REC market, which opens on Jan 1.
In response to a tough parody on South Park, MedMen CEO Adam Bierman said he was "humbled to be considered the most culturally relevant cannabis brand."
Javier Hasse, Forbes
State governments and the FBI are stepping up their efforts to fight cannabis-related corruption. Their pushes come after a top Nevada regulator lost his job amid allegations of being too cozy with the industry and a Massachusetts mayor recently pleaded not guilty to cannabis-related federal bribery charges.
MJBiz, Nevada Independent, Boston Herald
On 60 Minutes, Anderson Cooper delved into the potential for psychedelics to be used as medicine.
California company Hound Labs showed off The Hound, its new cannabis breathalyzer, which could be on the market as soon as next year.
A few weeks ago in the Guardian, I wrote that while nobody recommends driving high, it's not clear it is a problem in need of a solution. Additionally, the correlation between THC concentration in the blood and impairment is far less linear than it is with alcohol.
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