Let’s say you put 7-10 grams of marijuana into a batch of marijuana brownies. You bake them, wrap them all up, and put them in a cooler in the back of your car for tomorrow. On the way to your buddy’s place, you get pulled over and eventually searched by the police. They find the brownies in the cooler and charge you with possession of cannabis. Leaving aside the legality of why you were pulled over or searched, how many grams of cannabis can you be charged with? 7-10? Think again. You will be charged with the total weight of the brownies. By infusing marijuana into chocolate brownies you have practiced legal alchemy. In the eyes of the law, you have magically changed the chocolate, the butter, the salt, the eyes, into cannabis. The legal interpretation of the weight of cannabis in edibles varies by state. "However, most states view the weight of the entire edible cannabis the same as if it was all cannabis flowers," said Chicago Criminal Lawyer Robert J Callahan.
The absurdity of this legal ambiguity has made the news in recent years. Chicago native and the godfather of Drill rap, Chief Keef, was arrested on June 12, 2017, after airport security at Sioux Falls Regional Airport found 4 blunts and edible cannabis candies in his carry on luggage. He was in Souix Falls for an anti-bullying campaign. He is now facing up to 5 years in prison for this felony offense. 1 In South Dakota, based on the weight of the 4 blunts, Chief Keef would be facing only a misdemeanor offense. What makes Chief Keef’s case a perfect example is that the weight of the edible cannabis candies pushed the charges over the threshold necessary for felony charges. It wasn’t the blunts made up of actual cannabis flower, it was the edibles that caused Chief Keef to be facing felony charges. His trial is set for February. South Dakota, like Illinois law, makes no distinction between the weight of cannabis plant/flower or cannabis edible, vape, or wax. Illinois law defines cannabis as:
"Cannabis" includes marijuana, hashish and other substances which are identified as including any parts of the plant Cannabis Sativa, whether growing or not; the seeds thereof, the resin extracted from any part of such plant; and any compound, manufacture, salt, derivative, mixture, or preparation of such plant, its seeds, or resin, including tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and all other cannabinol derivatives, including its naturally occurring or synthetically produced ingredients, whether produced directly or indirectly by extraction, or independently by means of chemical synthesis or by a combination of extraction and chemical synthesis; but shall not include the mature stalks of such plant, fiber produced from such stalks, oil or cake made from the seeds of such plant, any other compound, manufacture, salt, derivative, mixture, or preparation of such mature stalks (except the resin extracted therefrom), fiber, oil or cake, or the sterilized seed of such plant which is incapable of germination.
Whether he was at O’Hare or Souix Falls Regional Airpot, Chief Keef would have been arrested for allegedly possessing these edibles. As our statute clearly states, Illinois considers any derivative, mixture, or preparation of cannabis the same as your regular old bag of weed. Who cares if that bag is 100% grown cannabis and those brownies aren’t? Certainly, law enforcement, nor the state of Illinois, does. They win either way. Call Chicago Criminal Attorney Robert J Callahan.1. http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/ct-chief- keef-pleads- not- guilty-20170922- story.html. 2 720 ILCS 550/3 (emphasis added). Get Directions to Robert J Callahan