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Marijuana Offenders Jailed at Half the Rate of Crack, Cocaine and Meth Offenders

Number of Drug Offenders in Federal Custody & Average Sentence LengthA 2015 report by the Bureau of Justice Statistics found that marijuana offenders were imprisoned at approximately half that rate of crack, powder cocaine and methamphetamine offenders. Additionally, the average marijuana sentence of 88 months (7.3 years) was shorter than other main drug classes. However, if a president who opposes marijuana legalization is elected in November, the size of the federal marijuana inmate population could grow if the government begins prosecuting business owners in states where marijuana is legal under federal marijuana trafficking laws.

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