Border official: Canadians entering U.S. risk lifetime ban for marijuana use

Canadian pot sector workers could face big troubles at the U.S. borders says analyst

"Although medical and recreational marijuana may be legal in some U.S. States and Canada, the sale, possession, production and distribution of marijuana remain illegal under U.S. federal law", Niezgoda said.

It's a change that apparently is not sitting especially well well with our neighbours to the south.

Canadians who work in the marijuana industry - and those who invest in the booming pot sector - will face significant risks when crossing the US border even after the drug becomes legal in Canada next month, according to detailed comments by a senior official overseeing U.S border operations. "We already notice somewhat of a trend of some people not going to the USA", said Silver.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said that marijuana will be legal across the country starting October 17.

Executive assistant commissioner for the Office of Field Operations for Customs Border Protection (CPB) Todd Owen said Thursday that agents will give Canadians a lifetime ban if they are connected to Canada's legal cannabis sector.

He also said many Canadians may be investors in cannabis stocks through major pension funds and mutual funds without being aware of it. The advice of Goodale and Trudeau is to be honest at the border - and to make sure you're not carrying.

Oh yeah, and if you're asked about past drug use, Owen stated that travellers shouldn't lie.

"Our officers are not going to be asking whether they have used marijuana, but if other questions lead there-or there is the smell coming from the auto, they might ask", Owen told the online magazine Politico.

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If such history is learned about someone trying to cross the border, Owen explained, or they lie about it, "that's fraud and misrepresentation, which carries a lifetime ban". They could declare users inadmissible - perhaps for life.

He will then be giving the opportunity to "voluntary withdraw" from the border-or face "expedited removal".

People who have received bans still have the possibility of applying for a waiver from US Customs and Border Protection (CBP).

Canadian Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale has often said he's working with US law enforcement to clarify the changes and make sure the border remains smooth.

Owen's comments confirm anecdotal evidence over the past year that the tough measures were coming.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau downplayed the matter on Tuesday, though he has said publicly he has smoked pot.

"Every country has the right to judge who gets to come into their borders or not. I certainly do", he said, just hours before boarding a flight to the USA for a personal trip on Friday afternoon.

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