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Judges Rule On Prop. 36

The California Supreme Court is telling judges that they need to stick to what voters intended when they´re sentencing criminals under a proposition meant to help those addicted to drugs.

It´s the first time the justices have ruled on Proposition 36, which was approved by voters in 2000. The initiative allows some drug offenders to choose to go to treatment instead of jail.

But the measure does not apply to drug offenders who were in prison on a felony in the five years before they were arrested. The court Thursday said judges are not allowed to offer drug treatment as an option to those offenders. It said the electorate´s will must be followed.

The decision overturns a Los Angeles appeals court.