In Alabama, Leni’s Law and Carley’s Law are both active laws. Those with approval and necessary proof of an accepted medical condition are permitted to possess and use CBD oil. But, Alabama forgot one thing: allowing legal sales and in-state access to the CBD oil.
Alabama DA, Walt Merrell, issued a notice that raids will be coming to retailers selling CBD oil, according to Andalusia Star News. Merrell started looking into CBD oil sales following questions by Lt. Chris Inabinett of the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency. If someone that has permission to use the CBD oil does get arrested, they do have an affirmative defense.
Merrell said, “Lt. Inabinett advised that he had received some complaints about merchants selling CBD oil, and he approached me about how to respond. He and I are both concerned that these clerks are being put in a situation where they could be charged with distribution of a controlled substance. The store owners could be charged as well. In effect, they are simply selling low dose marijuana in liquid form.”
Regarding the law, Merrell said, “However, the legislature did not create any exception to the laws prohibiting the sale of marijuana. In fact, Leni’s Law specifically says, ‘It is the intent of this legislature to maintain existing criminal prohibitions of marijuana, except as expressly provided in existing law or as expressly provided in this section.”
Merrell says that the CBD oil, is within those “existing criminal prohibitions” that were left standing by the legislature.
One business has already been raided.
Merrell also said, “We are just trying to let merchants and citizens know the true scope of the law, so we can avoid something similar happening here. This is our ‘public service announcement’. Our hope is that businesses will pull CBD items from their shelves and return them to whomever they bought them from. If they don’t, they will get raided soon enough. Then, they may be charged and prosecution would, of course, follow.”
Regarding patients, Merrill said, “There is a very narrow health exception where the law provides a defense for personal use possession of CBD oil. IT is not enough for someone to just claim ‘they need it’. To legally possess CBD oi will require medical proof of the ‘chronic or debilitating condition’.”
With CBD being a compound in marijuana, it is still considered a Schedule I drug. There is nothing said about the legality of hemp-derived CBD products, but the state is claiming that many CBD products aren’t what they say they are.
Merrell also said, “I’ve talked to district attorneys and law enforcement around the state, as well as scientists within the Department of Forensic Sciences. There is an alarming safety issue, aside from the obvious, that also exists with these products. Oftentimes, we send something that is ‘labeled’ as CBD oil to the Department of Forensic Sciences for testing. Then, we learn later that the item contains other synthetic drugs or compounds that are known to be harmful if consumed. There are medical trials at UAB that involve CBD oil, and I am sure that those doses are not contaminated or corrupted. As for the stuff you buy at the convenience store… I doubt there is any quality control that goes into making it. People shouldn’t ingest it – period.”