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Weed’s in the Mail

There’s a low budget bit of smuggling practiced by marijuana users around the nation. Instead of risking getting arrested or having your car confiscated by driving weed across the country, just mail it instead. But there are a few nuances.

For example, when Boise police arrested Mathieu L. Easter last week, they were tipped off by the postal inspectors, highlighting one of the risks of using the US Mail. The postal inspectors service acts as federal cops to police what goes through the mail. In this case, postal inspectors told police they suspected Easter was receiving marijuana and selling it from his Boise home. Cops then got a warrant to search, leading to the arrest.

Other “mail smugglers” avoid the US Post Office for this reason, preferring Federal Express or United Parcel Service instead. By using the private companies, they avoid federal charges that stem from misuse of the mail.

The shipping instead of driving method has its limitations. Quantities per shipment are limited to a few pounds and there is always the chance that a delivery will go awry. In one recent case, a woman in Massachusetts sued FedEx after she mistakenly received a package containing marijuana. After calling the police, who removed the drugs and left, the correct addressees (presumably dangerous criminals) showed up looking for the package. She is suing FedEx for giving out her address.

In some circumstances, it may even be legal to ship weed. If someone is a medical marijuana patient in one state and is going to a state that honors the card, they may find it less of a hassle to simply ship marijuana instead of trying to get it through airport security. They are legal at the point of shipping, and legal at the point where they accept the package, and arguably, they have committed no offense as long as the product is shipped through private carrier. Legal, that is, until some prosecutor decides to test this method with an arrest and prosecution.

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