Federal Agents Raid S.F. Pot Dispensary

Federal Agents Raid S.F. Pot Dispensary
Posted by CN Staff on October 04, 2006 at 06:48:34 PT
By Adam Martin and Sajid Farooq, The Examiner
Source: San Francisco Examiner
San Francisco - Federal drug agents raided a marijuana dispensary, grow sites and associated businesses in San Francisco and Oakland on Tuesday, arresting 15 people and seizing marijuana, property and cash.The Drug Enforcement Administration conducted raids on five locations in San Francisco and three in Oakland connected with a medical marijuana dispensary at 1760 Mission St., according to DEA spokeswoman Special Agent Casey McEnry. The address is listed as the location of a business called Compassionate Caregivers.
During Tuesday’s raids, the result of an investigation that commenced earlier this year, agents seized more than 12,700 marijuana plants, capable of yielding more than 3,100 pounds of marijuana with a street value of more than $9 million, McEnry said. They also seized $125,000 in cash and bank accounts, cars and computers.The Internal Revenue Service and the Santa Clara and Humboldt County sheriff’s departments aided the DEA in Tuesday’s raid.The dispensary in San Francisco served as a grow site, McEnry said. Agents also raided two other grow sites, a storage facility and a residence in The City, Special Agent Javier Pena, who led the investigation, said. They raided three businesses in Oakland, including an administrative office for the dispensary and a company called Potent Employment, an alleged staffing service for the grow sites and dispensary.“In San Francisco, we’ve taken steps to regulate the medical cannabis dispensaries,” Supervisor Chris Daly said Tuesday after hearing of the raids. “An overwhelming majority of San Franciscans support the medical use of cannabis, so it’s unfortunate the feds are running roughshod over us.”Protestors lined the sidewalk in front of the dispensary, holding signs and criticizing DEA agents, who loaded boxes labeled “MJ and Hash” into a van.A patient who identified himself only as Ernesto said, “Now I have to go to the streets, where it’s unsafe. They [the dispensary] do everything legal. They’re just really nice people.”“We’re up there doing our job and they’re protesting,” Pena said after the raid. “We respect their rights. Obviously some people are shouting for us to leave, but that’s part of the job. We’re professionals.”A lawyer or representative for 36-year-old Sparky Rose, of San Francisco, whom the DEA identified as the operator of the dispensary, was not available for comment Tuesday. San Francisco attorney Omar Figueroa, who has represented medical marijuana growers and patients in the past, called the raid “outrageous.”“My understanding is that these medical cannabis dispensaries welcome regulation and they just want there to be bright-line rules that they can follow,” Figueroa said. “The victims of the raids are going to be the patients that are members of these dispensaries.”Q & A: Medical Marijuana in S.F.How many pot clubs are there in The City? About 30 to 40 dispensaries sell marijuana in San Francisco.How can it be sold openly? Isn’t it illegal? The substance is legal with a doctor’s prescription under state proposition 215, passed in 1996 by a 56 percent majority of California voters. Marijuana is illegal, however, under federal law.Are the clubs regulated? San Francisco’s Board of Supervisors voted last year to regulate marijuana dispensaries operating within The City. Clubs must apply for licenses and must undergo inspections by the police, fire and health departments.Note: Fifteen arrested in actions in Oakland and The City; lawyer deems events outrageous. Staff Writer Josh Sabatini contributed to this report. Source: San Francisco Examiner (CA)Author: Adam Martin and Sajid Farooq, The ExaminerPublished: October 4, 2006Copyright: 2006 San Francisco ExaminerContact: letters sfexaminer.comWebsite: Medical Marijuana Archives
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Comment #17 posted by afterburner on October 04, 2006 at 23:18:08 PT
The Feds Don't Care
The feds don't care why someone is selling or growing cannabis. To the feds all possession, sale or cultivation is against federal law. To them cannabis is NOT medicine because the unControled Substances Act says that cannabis has no medical use. When the feds bust compassion clubs or cooperatives or individual gardeners, they always trumpet that these people are abusing the system. The compassion clubs are accused of making money and possessing large quantities of "drugs." As if the feds care. To the feds all Commerce in cannabis is against federal law, whether or not money changes hands or interstate boundaries are crossed by a transaction. The feds have already refused to allow medical defense, the US Supreme Court has given the green light to arrest anyone who handles cannabis, regardless of doctors' perceptions that cannabis has medical use. The FDA has released its mysterious and unscientific condemnation of cannabis medicine. C'mon, Arnold, prove you're not a girlie man. Only brave Governors can vouchsafe the sovereignty of States. Since most cannabis infractions are handled at the State level and since the federal government does not have the humanpower nor the money to enforce its own insane federal anti-cannabis laws, the States have the power, if they want it. Arnold, don't wimp out! Defend your State's sovereignty. Stop co-operating with the DEAth squads. They want to kill God's blessed plant and to kill patients by neglect.Why was cannabis medicine banned? 
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Comment #16 posted by FoM on October 04, 2006 at 19:19:44 PT
Another Raid in California
Apparent Raid at Palm Springs Marijuana Dispensary***October 4, 2006Pictures from The Raid: enforcement officials, including Palm Springs Police and agents with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration are searching the Palm Canyon Palm Springs Caregiver's medical marijuana dispensary at 333 N. Palm Canyon Drive this afternoon.Why federal and local police are searching the dispensary was not immediately available as officials with Palm Springs police and the DEA could not be reached immediately for comment.Eyewitnesses report police vehicles and people in DEA gear milling around the area. A search warrant was reportedly served on the facility while two people were inside. It is unknown whether those two people were patients or dispensary workers or where they were taken.Snipped:Complete Article:
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Comment #15 posted by FoM on October 04, 2006 at 17:14:00 PT
charmed quark 
I agree about WAMM and yes they were raided but they seem to have lots of support now. Hopefully they will leave them alone. I think WAMM has always been what I thought Prop 215 meant. I am not judging the actions of anyone but looking at this issue almost without any emotion. Emotion clouds my thinking so I try to put it aside when I am thinking about something this complicated.
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Comment #14 posted by charmed quark on October 04, 2006 at 17:06:13 PT
FoM- Prop 215
It didn't directly allow compassion clubs. But it did allow patients to designate a "caretaker" who could procure or grow cannabis for them. There is no mention in the proposition as to how many patients someone can be caretaker to. This is what allowed the compassion clubs - by joining a club you are designating the club as your primary caretaker, who now assumes responsibility for your health, fulfilling the definition of primary caretaker in the proposition. So the club can now procure or grow marijuana for you.This is my guess, anyway, as to why the clubs might be legal.Most of the current state laws restrict the number of people one person can be caretaker to, typically to no more than 2. So this would not allow a Californai compassion club system. But none of the laws I've seen would prevent the setting up of a cooperative like the Santa Cruz WO/MAN cooperative, where essentially each patient is growing their own cannabis ( perhaps with the help of a caretaker) at a common facility. And the Feds raided that.Here's the entire text of 215. Notice clause "C", where the state is suppose to set up a distribution system:
 11362.5. (a) This section shall be known and may be cited as the Compassionate Use Act of 1996.
  (b)(1) The people of the State of California hereby find and declare that the purposes of the Compassionate Use Act of 1996 are as follows:
  (A) To ensure that seriously ill Californians have the right to obtain and use marijuana for medical purposes where that medical use is deemed appropriate and has been recommended by a physician who has determined that the person's health would benefit from the use of marijuana in the treatment of cancer, anorexia, AIDS, chronic pain, spasticity, glaucoma, arthritis, migraine, or any other illness for which marijuana provides relief.
  (B) To ensure that patients and their primary caregivers who obtain and use marijuana for medical purposes upon the recommendation of a physician are not subject to criminal prosecution or sanction.
  (C) To encourage the federal and state governments to implement a plan to provide for the safe and affordable distribution of marijuana to all patients in medical need of marijuana.
  (2) Nothing in this section shall be construed to supersede legislation prohibiting persons from engaging in conduct that endangers others, nor to condone the diversion of marijuana for nonmedical purposes.
  (c) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no physician in this state shall be punished, or denied any right or privilege, for having recommended marijuana to a patient for medical purposes.
  (d) Section 11357, relating to the possession of marijuana, and Section 11358, relating to the cultivation of marijuana, shall not apply to a patient, or to a patient's primary caregiver, who possesses or cultivates marijuana for the personal medical purposes of the patient upon the written or oral recommendation or approval of a physician.
  (e) For the purposes of this section, ''primary caregiver" means the individual designated by the person exempted under this section who has consistently assumed responsibility for the housing, health, or safety of that person.
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Comment #13 posted by FoM on October 04, 2006 at 15:36:38 PT
charmed quark 
I guess what I meant is what does Prop 215 allow and are the clubs within the legal boundaries as determined by Prop 215. If not that will scare politicians because they won't want to give an inch for fear people will take a mile and that very well could upset some of their moderate supporters. 
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Comment #12 posted by charmed quark on October 04, 2006 at 15:24:07 PT
FoM - compassion laws
I wan't clear earlier about the "grey area". AFAIK, only the westcoast states have tried compassion clubs. But, as you know, quite a number of states are considering passing medical cannabis laws right now, including stodgy old New Jersey. But these DEA raids impact this sort of legislation at all levels. For instance, I was discussing with a legislator the fact that many medical cannabis users come from newly diagnosed cancer patients. You get diagnosed with breast cancer, say, begin chemo a couple of weeks later, and discover you can't tolerate the chemo due to nausea. Without some sort of distribution system, what are you going to do? Wait 15 weeks for your "crop" to come in. By then you'll be dead.So I was suggesting some sort of either state distribution system or compassion clubs like California, probably much more tightly controlled. But the legislator says this is right out, pointing to the DEA raids in CA. And some legislators are rethinking whether they will support the legislation, saying the DEA raids show how strongly the Feds oppose state-level medical cannabis.So the DEA is getting a lot of "positive" results from these raids.
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Comment #11 posted by whig on October 04, 2006 at 15:21:22 PT
Please help a good man
Robert Anton Wilson needs help.
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Comment #10 posted by whig on October 04, 2006 at 14:46:24 PT
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Comment #9 posted by BGreen on October 04, 2006 at 14:23:49 PT
It's like an old Abbott and Costello routine:Bud: Don't do that, it'll hurt you.Lou: This is harmless, Bud. How could this hurt me?Bud: Because if you do it, I'll punch you in the face.(Don't insert laugh track here because cannabis prohibition isn't funny at all.)The Reverend Bud Green
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Comment #8 posted by Shishaldin on October 04, 2006 at 14:03:29 PT
lombar hits the nail squarely on the head...
lombar sez: "However, for the hypocrite narco-fascists to experience their schadenfreude, they must continually create consequences that are far use than the drug usage itself."Can I get an AMEN?Some people just can't stand to see other folks having a good time. Their crazy dogma requires them to damn others who would DARE try to enjoy life and blissful states of mind, instead of their fearful paranoic psychosis offered up as "normal".The days of Purit-insanity are through. Jah has blessed us with the Tree of Life to open our minds and hearts, to see through the lies, hate, and insanity of these types. The truth must be revealed...
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Comment #7 posted by whig on October 04, 2006 at 12:43:39 PT
You're doing good work.
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Comment #6 posted by lombar on October 04, 2006 at 11:22:30 PT
Have you ever wondered why?
I have been trying to write something every day. Todays chicken scratchings:Have you ever wondered why cannabis is illegal while alcohol is not? Alcohol and tobacco have a huge pile of bodies attributable their use while cannabis, that has never been proved to kill anyone.Why are some people so dead set against cannabis but have no problem with all the violence associated with alcohol. They lobby tirelessly to keep cannabis illegal but do not lobby for a return to alcohol prohibition. This view seems inconsistent.It is not inconsistent if you see the root of this, puritan ideology. Real puritans eschew alcohol as well but the psuedo-puritans that people the so-called treatment industry, the police forces, and the legislatures, can hold the inconsistent view. Why?Puritans believe that taking any kind of drugs is evil, pseudo-puritans only believe that taking drugs like cannabis is evil.Why?Alcohol and tobacco both really are dangerous and addictive drugs that cause serious physical damage if used (or abused). This makes these drugs acceptable to those who want to sit smugly and claim people who use these drugs get exactly what they deserve.However, with cannabis, the bliss is almost side-effect free, inexpensive, and does not lead to serious health problems, despite the drug war lies. However, for the hypocrite narco-fascists to experience their schadenfreude, they must continually create consequences that are far use than the drug usage itself. To sit back smugly and claim "they got what they deserved", what many believe cannabis users deserve, they must build prisons and continually lie about drugs in general.
The rest...
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Comment #5 posted by b4daylight on October 04, 2006 at 11:08:23 PT
So the US governement is allowing small prescription low cost drugs to come into the country. Nelson said the FDA will focus on large shipments of drugs that are likely being imported for illegal purposes.Amazing 
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Comment #4 posted by konagold on October 04, 2006 at 10:50:52 PT:
Aloha -- they are pro's,
professional bullies with badges who beat up on sick people, that is.AlohaRev. Dennis Shields
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Comment #3 posted by Max Flowers on October 04, 2006 at 10:10:05 PT
"We’re professionals.”
Yes you are---professional liars, thieves and goons.
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Comment #2 posted by knowhemp on October 04, 2006 at 07:47:34 PT
sad news
this goes to show how frightened they are of legal medicinal cannabis. they'll let us have everything short of a true legal system to work with just in case things get beyond their comfort zone - then they move in and do what they do worst.
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Comment #1 posted by potpal on October 04, 2006 at 06:59:07 PT
Death Enforcemenet Agency
These guys are gonna make excellent security guards someday. So I thought CA was the leader when it came to social change, looking like CO is the state that will make this world SAFER for all of us. CA is governed by a girlie man. He lets the feds come in and have their way with him. 
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