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Jones Act Fails

Prohibition had been in effect for close to 10 years and it wasn’t going well. Local authorities were still overwhelmed by the rise in illegal and widespread alcohol distribution. But there was a last-ditch effort on the horizon to make prohibition stick. The Jones Act increased penalties for violating prohibition laws to help increase deterrence. President Calvin Coolidge signed it into law on March 2, 1929. The act stipulated that fines up to $10,000 or five years in jail—or both could be imposed. But, as could be expected, this new law failed as organized crime already had control over the alcohol market and they could afford the crime and avoid authorities.

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