WEST HOLLYWOOD, Calif., Feb. 18, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Medbox, Inc. (OTC Markets: MDBX) (www.medboxinc.com), a leader in providing consulting services and patented medicine storage and dispensing systems to the medical and retail industries, today commended the Obama administration for issuing new rules intended to ease the concerns of banks wanting to deal with businesses that legally sell marijuana, and clearly outline limitations for federal prosecution of marijuana-related offenses.
Dr. Bruce Bedrick, chief executive officer of Medbox, will appear on CNBC's Closing Bell on Tuesday, February 18, and Fox Business on Wednesday, February 19 to discuss the new guidelines and what they could mean for the legal marijuana industry, including Medbox.
Dr. Bedrick is scheduled to appear as follows:
- On Tuesday, February 18, Dr. Bedrick is scheduled to appear on CNBC's Closing Bell program at approximately 4:40 p.m. ET with hosts Bill Griffeth and Kelly Evans for a live, five-minute segment.
- On Wednesday, February 19, Dr. Bedrick is scheduled to appear FBN's After the Bell program during the 4 p.m. ET hour with hosts Liz Claman and David Asman for a live, five-minute segment.
To date, 20 states and the District of Columbia have passed laws allowing the sale of medical and recreational marijuana, but its production, sale, and possession remain illegal under federal law. The miss-alignment of Federal and State laws has prevented the nation's banks from enabling dispensaries and other businesses in the legal marijuana industry to utilize the banking system, but today's rules should alleviate that problem.
The rules, issued by the Treasury and Justice Departments, will allow lawful marijuana businesses to have access to the American banking system when banks have verified that the businesses are properly licensed. Up until now, legal operators and vendors have had to conduct an all-cash business, making them potential targets for thieves. It is the responsibility of the banks to conduct due diligence about the types of products the vendors sell and the nature of the customers they serve. Accordingly, under the new rules, banks that believe a marijuana dealer is reputable will file a "marijuana limited" report.
In addition, The Justice Department issued a memorandum to prosecutors that closely follows guidance last August largely limiting federal enforcement priorities to eight types of crimes, including distribution to minors, cartel-related trafficking and distribution to states where marijuana is not legal. Businesses that do not violate federal law in these eight specific areas are cleared to access the American banking system, and per the DOJ memo, "may not" be prosecuted.
"Every financial institution will have to make its own risk assessment and whether it makes businesses sense," said an administration official. "While it may not reassure every bank, we're providing an opening for those who want to serve this sector." A Treasury Department official said demand has been especially heavy in Colorado and Washington, where retail sale of marijuana is now legal under state law.
As the industry leader in the legal marijuana industry, having consulted with more than 400 clients, helping businesses secure licenses, identify locations, build-out dispensaries, educate patients and conduct business in a safe, secure, and legally compliant way, Medbox strongly praises the comments from the federal administration.
"The market for legal marijuana is expected to exceed $3 billion this year," commented Dr. Bruce Bedrick, chief executive officer, Medbox, Inc. "We are encouraged by and commend the Obama administration for its forward-thinking action to ease the issues that banks currently have in doing business with dispensary operators which Medbox directly serves. This is yet another step in what we believe will be a steady progression to legalization of marijuana in most, if not all, states in the coming years."
About Medbox, Inc.:
Medbox is a leader in the development, sales and service of automated, biometrically controlled dispensing and storage systems for medicine and merchandise. Headquartered in Los Angeles, Medbox provides their patented systems, software and consulting services to pharmacies, dispensaries, urgent care centers, drug rehab clinics, hospitals, prison systems, hospice facilities, and medical groups worldwide. In addition, through its wholly owned subsidiary, Vaporfection International, Inc. (www.vaporfection.com), the company offers an industry award winning medical vaporizer product.
Medbox, Inc. is a publicly traded company, and is quoted on the OTC Markets, ticker symbol MDBX.
Forward-Looking Statements: The statements in this press release constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of federal securities laws. Such statements are based on our current beliefs and expectations and are inherently subject to significant business, economic and competitive uncertainties and contingencies, many of which are beyond our control. In addition, such forward-looking statements are subject to assumptions with respect to future business strategies and decisions that are subject to change. Potential risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, technical advances in the industry, political conditions and economic conditions in the states considering such legislation. We do not take any obligation to update any forward-looking statement to reflect events or developments after a forward-looking statement was made.
For more information on Medbox, please contact Medbox at (800) 762-1452 or go online to www.medboxinc.com.
SOURCE Medbox, Inc.