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U.S. Raids L.A. Marijuana Shops
Posted by CN Staff on September 26, 2012 at 05:24:25 PT
By Kate Linthicum and Andrew Blankstein, LA Times
Source: Los Angeles Times
Los Angeles -- Federal officials brought their war on medical marijuana dispensaries to Los Angeles on Tuesday, raiding several shops and issuing warning letters to dozens more. Officials at the U.S. attorney's office said it was the first large-scale federal action taken against cannabis shops in the city, and said more will probably follow. "We couldn't do all of L.A. at once," said Thom Mrozek, a spokesman for the office. "There's just too many stores." The crackdown adds a dramatic element to the already tense fight over the fate of medical marijuana dispensaries in the city. And it underscores the stern stance of the federal government that the sale and distribution of cannabis is illegal, no matter what cities do to try to regulate the industry.
Over the last year, federal authorities have targeted pot businesses across California, including a high-profile raid at a marijuana trade school in Oakland, where proceeds on medical marijuana are taxed.The Southern California effort began in October in Orange County and has since moved east into the Inland Empire and north into Los Angeles County. "Now we have arrived at the city of Los Angeles," Mrozek said.Prosecutors went to court Tuesday to file civil asset forfeiture complaints against the owners of three Eagle Rock properties for allowing three commercial marijuana stores to operate: Together for Change Collective, House of Kush and ER Collective.The Drug Enforcement Administration also executed search warrants at three locations  in downtown, Boyle Heights and Silver Lake.Mrozek said authorities have mailed warning letters to the property owners and operators of an additional 67 dispensaries, mostly in Eagle Rock and downtown, giving them two weeks to comply with federal law. A marijuana business in Huntington Park, believed to be the only one in that city, was also told to shut down.The actions come as L.A. officials and medical marijuana activists gear up for a ballot measure fight over the fate of a recent city ban on dispensaries.The City Council approved a ban on the storefront sale of marijuana this summer, saying that each of the estimated 750 pot shops operating across the city must close. The ordinance would allow small groups of patients to grow and share the drug.But before the ban went into effect, activists seeking to strike it down saw their challenge qualify for the ballot. That means the City Council now must choose whether to repeal the ordinance, replace it with a modified version or let voters decide. Several council members, including Jose Huizar, who pushed for the ban, say they intend to put the referendum on the March 5 ballot, when voters will choose a mayor, city controller, city attorney and eight council members.Huizar, who represents Eagle Rock and much of downtown, cheered the federal crackdown and called on state legislators "to create a better way of providing access for seriously ill patients while removing the scores of profiteers and recreational users who currently dominate the market."Huizar and others complain that California's law guaranteeing patients safe access to medical marijuana is too vague in how the drug should be regulated.In the early days of President Obama's tenure, Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder Jr. said federal prosecutors would not target medical marijuana users and caregivers as long as they followed state laws. But as the risk of prosecution diminished, storefront dispensaries and enormous growing operations proliferated in California, often in brazen defiance of zoning laws and local bans.Last year, the four U.S. attorneys assigned to the state announced that they were taking aim at large-scale growers.Source: Los Angeles Times (CA)Author: Kate Linthicum and Andrew Blankstein, Los Angeles TimesPublished: September 26, 2012Copyright: 2012 Los Angeles TimesContact: letters latimes.comWebsite: http://www.latimes.com/URL: http://drugsense.org/url/Xk9RS8rOCannabisNews  Medical Marijuana Archiveshttp://cannabisnews.com/news/list/medical.shtml 
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Comment #7 posted by afterburner on September 27, 2012 at 23:01:04 PT
End the Murderous War on Drugs
StoptheDrugWar.org / By Phillip Smith.
16 COMMENTS.
Colombia, Guatemala, and Mexico Beg for an End to the Murderous War on Drugs.
Wednesday's UN General Assembly session saw not one, not two, but three Latin American heads of state call on it to promote debate on alternatives to the war on drugs. 
September 27, 2012
http://www.alternet.org/colombia-guatemala-and-mexico-beg-end-murderous-war-drugs?akid=9454.313040.ERlyxm&rd=1&src=newsletter717829&t=11
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Comment #6 posted by afterburner on September 27, 2012 at 22:45:33 PT
'their mission,like their slogan,is one of peace' 
AlterNet / By Kristen Gwynne.
15 COMMENTS.
Shocking Stories of Loss Motivate Mourners of Mexico's Drug War Victims to Hold the U.S. Responsible.
Mexicans are determined to make America hear the truth about its role in Mexico's drug war.
September 25, 2012
http://www.alternet.org/shocking-stories-loss-motivate-mourners-mexicos-drug-war-victims-hold-us-responsible?akid=9449.138978.hUU7kh&rd=1&src=newsletter716901&t=4&paging=off
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Comment #5 posted by FoM on September 26, 2012 at 17:10:44 PT
BGreen
I am here everyday too but I am so darn busy that it is hard for me to post as much as I did. Hopefully we will see more concrete changes over the next 4 years. There won't be anything to lose and the Republicans will have to regroup and think why they are going down so bad. Most of the people I know are much older that still believe in the RP.
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Comment #4 posted by BGreen on September 26, 2012 at 16:15:05 PT
Hi, FoM!
It's good to see you, too. I've once again been totally concentrating on our music to the detriment of my appearances here.I still check in daily, even if I don't take the time to write anything. I hope to have more time soon.Bud
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Comment #3 posted by FoM on September 26, 2012 at 09:59:28 PT
BGreen
It's really good to see you. I agree with you too. I don't think Obama gives this problem much of any thought considering how much is going on now. The ones put in charge do what they want to do. They have rules and policies and they act on them.
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Comment #2 posted by BGreen on September 26, 2012 at 09:52:06 PT
Your Proof, Lucas?
The entire war on cannabis was created out of a blatant hatred of Hispanics. Hispanics and African Americans have borne the brunt of the harm caused by prohibition of the cannabis plant. The men you speak of are incredibly smart and also well versed in history. The assumption that further attacking the Hispanic with a greater veracity is an attempt to sway the voters towards the Democratic party lacks plausibility.The DEA, just like the TSA, are examples of power-hungry megalomaniacal organizations that are totally out of control. They are going to support whichever party will give them more strength, and that is more than obviously the Republican party. If these raids were meant to sway any voters then it's obviously the bigoted, racist, hateful White people who created the prohibition of cannabis in the first place. Just remember, the support for prohibition of cannabis came out of the same White churches that gave us the Ku Klux Klan.Their track record kind of sucks, don't you think?Why then do you think our African American President and the Hispanic Mayor of the second largest city in this Country are behind the centuries old attack created by the White people against the people of their very own races?Blame the DEA. They are the most evil and corrupt organization since J. Edgar Hoover ran the FBI!The Reverend Bud Green
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Comment #1 posted by Lucas on September 26, 2012 at 08:57:30 PT
Its Obama
the mayor of Los Angeles is Hispanic. He is the Chairman of the Democratic Convention.Obama is positioning himself to capture the Hispanic vote by having the DEA go after Medical Marijuana in California.The DEA raids are in the district of Joe Huizar, who is an LA city council member trying to enforce prohibition. Since his Ban failed, he called in the DEA.There must be something illegal about city and state officials circumventing state law when they dont get their way.But its not about legal, its about prohibition.
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