North Platte business owner charged with distribution after selling CBD products

Elite Lifestyles storefront in North Platte. (SOURCE: KNOP-TV/Jace Barraclough)
Elite Lifestyles storefront in North Platte. (SOURCE: KNOP-TV/Jace Barraclough)(KNOP)
Published: Jul. 24, 2019 at 3:28 PM CDT
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Jacob Johanson of Elite Lifestyles in North Platte is being charged with a felony as a result of selling CBD products.

CBD or cannabinoid is a derivative of marijuana used to treat various ailments and chronic diseases.

"It's the closest thing to a miracle cure that I've ever come across and I don't believe in miracle cures," said Johanson.

"It helps such a wide variety of ailments. It could be anything from a child's migraine, a dog's arthritis, arthritis in general, sleeping disorders, eating disorders, anxiety, recovery."

Johanson advertised the sell of CBD on Facebook and was told to cease all sales of the products and remove the post.

After complying with law enforcement, the business owner sought legal council regarding the matter.

"I had sought out legal advice. The legal council that I sought out through American Shaman had stated that I was not breaking any laws. So, as far as I knew and was concerned there were no laws being broken and it was at that time I reopened sales," said Johanson.

After being charged with Felony Distribution of a Controlled Substance he stopped selling all CBD.

Johanson's attorney, Russ Jones, said his concern is the County Attorney is charging his client with distribution of THC with products that supposedly contain legal amounts of the chemical.

"I think the County Attorney's contention is he was selling CBD's which is true. But, they charged him with distribution of THC. The product that he sells I suspect has a negligible amount of THC in it that won't be psycho active," said Jones.

"The preliminary hearing to determine whether or not there's probable cause that he did distribute THC and we intend to see what the court has to say about that and we're interested to see what the state's evidence is with respect to that."

In recent months the Nebraska Legislature has passed laws in favor of hemp products.

"I think Nebraska at least with respect to this last legislation has basically jumped on board with CBD. They're not prosecuting people for selling CBD's across the state that I can tell. There's two or three cases. None of them have been successful to this point but that doesn't mean it couldn't be successful. I guess we'll find out," said Jones

Johanson echoed the same sentiment.

"Now that LB-657 has been passed, we're growing hemp here in Nebraska and it's being sold all across the state. As far as I know you can drive to Gothenburg and purchase it at the gas stations and truck stops there so I'm just really confused about what's going on here in Lincoln County," said Johanson.

Johanson has a court date set for August 9.

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