Four months after Canada became the second country in the world to legalize recreational marijuana use and certain commercial activities, Canadian travelers who are found to have invested in legal U.S. and Canada marijuana companies are being banned from entering the U.S. Despite the fact that cannabis is also legal in 9 U.S. States, the use, possession, distribution, and production of marijuana remain illegal under U.S. federal law and has immigration consequences for foreign nationals.
Canadian investors who have invested in legal marijuana companies are being stopped at borders for being “paid through drug money” and assisting and abetting criminal enterprises. Regardless of whether the individual personally uses marijuana or have a criminal history, investors have found that they are being questioned and treated as if they themselves are personally involved in drug trafficking. Customs and Border Patrol have stated that individuals are judged on a case-by-case basis by the officer adjudicating at the time. Foreign nationals travelling to the United States from Canada should expect to be questioned about their personal use, commercial activities, financial transactions, or investments in the cannabis industry. U.S. citizen travelers coming back from Canada or another country with legalized marijuana usage are not affected as by law American citizens cannot be stopped from returning to the country.
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