Nebraska law enforcement is investigating sales of hemp-derived cannabis products containing more than 0.3% THC.
Most recently, authorities in Lincoln seized products, paraphernalia and financial records from five stores that previously failed compliance checks earlier this year for testing.
According to the Lincoln Journal Star, the Sarpy County Sheriff’s Office joined forces with six law enforcement agencies in southeast Nebraska and allegedly bought products containing more than 5% THC from stores in recent months.
Store owners and staff caught up in the investigation have not been charged, and it’s unclear what, if any, consequences they could face.
Neither medical nor adult-use marijuana is legal in Nebraska.
Hemp products containing the legal limit of 0.3% delta-9 THC or less was federally legalized in the 2018 Farm Bill.
But the law fails to address delta-8 or delta-10 THC products – an apparent loophole that state governments are grappling with.
In Virginia, for example, sellers of hemp-derived products containing more than the 0.3% THC limit face hefty fines.
Nebraska’s state statute similarly prohibits products containing more than 0.3% THC and doesn’t discriminate between different types of the cannabinoid.
Store operators should expect more “spot checks” to come, authorities told the Journal Star.
As for efforts to legalize medical marijuana in Nebraska, it’s been an uphill battle.
The advocacy group Nebraskans for Medical Marijuana is making a third push to put the issue to voters on the November 2024 ballot.
To do so, the group needs to collect 87,000 verified signatures by July 2024.