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Judge Decries Dropped Pot Charge for Sullivan


A federal judge in Massachusetts has decried what he considers preferential treatment for blogger Andrew Sullivan, whose recent charge for marijuana possession on Cape Cod was dropped while other defendants with the same charge were prosecuted.

Although U.S. magistrate judge Robert B. Collings cannot force prosecutors to press the charge against Sullivan, he wanted it known that he believed the treatment of The Daily Dish blogger was unfair, according to The Boston Globe.

"In a strongly worded memorandum issued Thursday, U.S. Magistrate Judge Robert B. Collings said the decision by Acting U.S. Attorney Michael K. Loucks to dismiss a federal misdemeanor possession charge against Sullivan flouted a 'cardinal principle of our legal system' -- that all persons stand equal before the law," the newspaper reported on Saturday.

A park ranger ticketed Sullivan, 46, on July 13 after he was caught smoking marijuana on a federal beach on Cape Cod. Massachusetts decriminalized small amounts of marijuana through a voter referendum last November, but the change does not apply to federal property.

Prosecutors declined to pursue the case against Sullivan out of concern that the $125 fine could damage his U.S. immigration application. Sullivan, who is British, lives in Washington, D.C., and owns a home in Cape Cod.

Neither the U.S. attorney's office nor Sullivan would comment to TheBoston Globe.

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