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Alex White Plume aims to grow hemp on Pine Ridge Reservation

Alex White Plume. Photo from The Flying Cloud Eco-DiscoveryTour

Alex White Plume, a former president and vice president of the Oglala Sioux Tribe of South Dakota, hopes to restart a hemp operation due to a change in federal policy.

The tribe allows hemp to be cultivated on the Pine Ridge Reservation. Federal agents destroyed White Plume's crops even though the plants do not share the same drug characteristics as marijuana, a close relative.

But now that the Department of Justice has opened the door for tribes to legalize marijuana, White Plume's attorneys are hoping to lift a court order that prevents him from cultivating hemp. He believes the plant represents an economic development opportunity for the reservation.

"Now, we're finally at a point where we can really exercise our rights and maybe we'll see some money as the outcome," White Plume told South Dakota Public Broadcasting.

Get the Story:
Pine Ridge Hemp Farm May Sprout Again (South Dakota Public Radio 3/27)

Relevant Documents:
Department of Justice Policy Statement Regarding Marijuana Issues in Indian Country (October 2014)

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