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Banks Happy to Have Cardholders Buy Weed Online, Lawyers Say

  • Claim made in defense of two men charged with defrauding banks
  • U.S. says duped banks processed $150 millon in pot purchases
Photographer: Ben Nelms/Bloomberg

Banks including Citigroup and Bank of America were happy to look the other way when customers used their credit and debit cards to buy marijuana online, said lawyers defending two men accused of defrauding banks into processing pot purchases.

“Marijuana is a big business and it’s big business for everyone involved, including the banks,” Christopher Tayback, a lawyer for Hamid Akhavan, told jurors in closing arguments following a three-week trial in Manhattan federal court.