In the early hours of Saturday, Nevada started the sale of marijuana for recreational purposes, just months after voters approved legislation to the effect.

The state, which is famed for the hotels and casinos in its largest city, Las Vegas, became the fifth US state to adopt the law, after Colorado, Oregon, Washington and Alaska.

Adults, 21 years and above with valid ID cards, are allowed to buy up to one ounce of the drug though it is under ban by the federal government.

It remains illegal to light up in public places, including casinos, bars, convention centers, restaurants, parks and concert halls.

People can only use marijuana in the privacy of their homes.

Violators face a $600 fine.

Hundreds of people reportedly lined up at Essence Cannabis Dispensary on the Las Vegas Strip and cheered as the doors opened just after midnight.

State senator Tick Segerblom, one of the main proponents of marijuana legalisation in Nevada, made the first purchase at The Source dispensary at a strip mall.

Tourists are expected to make nearly two of every three recreational marijuana purchases in Nevada.

The department of taxation anticipates up to $60 million dollars in tax revenue in just two years.



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