Federal prosecutors seize four more pot-shop buildings

January 19, 2012

As part of a continuing crack down on California’s medical marijuana dispensaries, federal prosecutors filed forfeiture actions against the owners of four properties housing marijuana storefronts In Los Angeles and Orange counties on Wednesday, according to a press release.

U.S. prosecutors announced in October that they’re using property seizures and criminal charges to crack down on California’s medical marijuana dispensary owners and operators.

On Wednesday, prosecutors also filed three asset forfeiture complaints against buildings in Costa Mesa where marijuana stores are operating and sent warning letters to nearly two dozen pot shops also operating in Costa Mesa.

In addition, federal attorneys from the Central District of California sent warning letters to property owners and operators associated with marijuana stores in unincorporated Walnut, La Puente, Murrieta and Lake Elsinore, where a total of 17 stores are operating. The letters warned that the stores are operating in violation of federal law and that the owners of the properties and businesses have 15 days to take steps to stop the sale and distribution of marijuana at the stores or face criminal actions and/or property seizures.

“It is important to note that for-profit, commercial marijuana operations are illegal not only under federal law, but also under California law,” said United States Attorney André Birotte Jr. “While California law permits collective cultivation of marijuana in limited circumstances, it does not allow commercial distribution through the store-front model we see across California.”


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16 Comments

  1. Citizen says:

    Does anyone have a theory as to the real purpose of these federal raids on medical mj.?

    (4) 4 Total Votes - 4 up - 0 down
    • Maxfusion says:

      Yes, it’s called the erosion of State’s Rights. An all powerful, centralized government doesn’t like it when its wards buck the system. The Great Leader will decide which medicines your doctor prescribes.

      (2) 2 Total Votes - 2 up - 0 down
  2. inmyopinion says:

    Can you say Agenda 21 ?

    (2) 2 Total Votes - 2 up - 0 down
    • zaphod says:

      the united nations plot to impurify our precious medical marijuana laws

      (-1) 3 Total Votes - 1 up - 2 down
  3. willie says:

    The phrase coined by LE that marijuana is a gateway drug is not holding up well as time goes by.
    They should legalize it for adults and medical necessites
    Its better for them to evolve (legalize) and collect revenue than to lie and practice their Ramo raids

    (6) 14 Total Votes - 10 up - 4 down
  4. bobfromsanluis says:

    I am a liberal progressive who is disappointed by many of the actions of President Obama, but I have no feelings of being “betrayed” by him or his agenda. Those on the right try to paint him as the most liberal, the most left-wing of all time for any president in history which is not really backed up by historical facts. The right also denounced Bill Clinton as left-wing even as he co-opted many Republican ideals and programs, essentially doing political Aikido by taking the programs that were being forced upon him by the right and embracing them to his own advantage. Barack Obama is even less left-wing then Bill Clinton in many respects, but has managed to pass a few progressive pieces of legislation as well as nominating a couple of seemingly progressive Justices to the Supreme Court. As a candidate Barack Obama promised quite a few things, and he also gave kind of a “wink and a nod” to some of the more progressive ideals, but he never identified himself as liberal or progressive; that is the basis for my not being surprised by the very conservative approach to a lot of how he has governed. I am very disappointed by his directing the Justice Department to go after Medical Marijuana providers and landlords of those providers. He is wrong, period and hopefully after his reelection he just might finally decide to embrace a more progressive agenda for his second term. With the blow back from the “Fast and Furious” program concerning weapons going into Mexico, his choice for AG, Eric Holder, needs to be replaced and perhaps he can get someone who has a more enlightened approach to marijuana will reverse the damage the federal government is reeking on the medical marijuana industry. The alternative, a presidency of Mitt Romney or Newt Gingrich would most likely have even more prosecution of MMJ providers and property owners of those providers than Obama has unfortunately gone after.

    (-4) 12 Total Votes - 4 up - 8 down
    • standup says:

      Obama has been way more aggressive than Bush so don’t assume the worst. Plus, Obama flat out lied, pure and simple just to get elected. Vote Ron Paul.

      (7) 19 Total Votes - 13 up - 6 down
    • OnTheOtherHand says:

      My political “affiliation” varies with the topic but I think that you have been conned as successfully by Obama as any fiscal conservative was by Bush. This is not a huge criticism as I was slightly conned by him too in 2008. (I had my doubts but didn’t see a viable alternative so voted for him hoping for the best.)

      If he is at all a progressive, he is a gutless one who will only rarely stand up and lead against the fascists on the right. However, as soon as he appointed Geithner as Sec. Treas. and Hilary as Sec. State, I knew that he was just another politician interested in catering to the moneyed interests and would only do the minimum necessary to support real “Change”. (I am not disappointed he failed in some of his promises but the lack of leadership generally convinces me that he is not committed to any reforms that would adversely affect his campaign contributors.)

      While he may not have promised to advocate for legalization of marijuana, he did say that he would step back on enforcement by the Justice Dept. in states like CA that were legalizing to some extent. These recent actions indicate that he has not just abandoned that promise but reversed himself on it. I am guessing that he has figured out that the loss of political support is some quarters is of greater concern to him than any votes he might lose in CA and the few other states whose laws don’t mesh with the federal ones. That, to me, is a character flaw almost as bad as those being exposed in most of the Republican candidates. I wish that Ron Paul was a viable alternative even though I think his philosophy has some major flaws. It would be nice to get someone with integrity as President again.

      (3) 9 Total Votes - 6 up - 3 down
      • bobfromsanluis says:

        Thank you for a reasoned reply. Like I stated, I knew that he was not a progressive, but you are correct in your assertion that he has reversed his approach to MMJ. As much as I would have liked to see someone with real principles get elected, there was no way in hell that Dennis Kucinich was going to be the candidate on the Democratic ticket; that would have been real change. It bothers me quite a bit that having someone like Romney or Gingrich would be in line to appoint the next two or three Supreme Court Justices is the only reason that I will give the President my vote in November. As for Ron Paul, please, just don’t; the man has no business being in politics at all.

        (1) 5 Total Votes - 3 up - 2 down
  5. danika says:

    Your Government is now working harder to keep you protected.

    From the LA Times article “10 Reasons why the U.S. is no longer Land of the Free”

    Indefinite detention

    “Under the law signed last month, terrorism suspects are to be held by the military; the president also has the authority to indefinitely detain citizens accused of terrorism. While the administration claims that this provision only codified existing law, experts widely contest this view, and the administration has opposed efforts to challenge such authority in federal courts. The government continues to claim the right to strip citizens of legal protections based on its sole discretion.”

    In today’s L.A. Times, a story about two citizens experiencing the above.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/police-overreach-in-the-name-of-fighting-terrorism/2012/01/17/gIQADluG9P_story.html?tid=pm_pop

    We have a lot more to worry about than just medical marijuana busts. What happened to our America?

    (12) 20 Total Votes - 16 up - 4 down
    • OnTheOtherHand says:

      We have politicians on both sides assaulting individual liberties. They have figured out how to divide the citizenry by catering to single-issue voters and convincing them that disaster will result if the “enemy” on those issues gains power.

      Once in office, they continue to give lip service to their base voters — even acting on their behalf to the minimum degree necessary — while only concerning themselves with real action when the interests of big campaign donors are at stake.

      None of them really care about our rights as long as they aren’t personally affected by them. They can always blame “the other party” if they fail to protect one their own supporters care about and use it as a campaign issue next time around. The perks of office largely protect them from feeling any consequences of loss of liberty.

      It is time for us to de-emphasize the importance of our differences on “hot-button” issues until we can clean out the majority of politicians whose loyalty to donors far exceeds their loyalty to the Constitution and the concepts of individual liberty it is supposed to protect.

      (2) 4 Total Votes - 3 up - 1 down
  6. standup says:

    Obama is a no good lying sob in my opinion. He lied to us to get into the whitehouse and now he is shoving it up our rears. Thanks to all of you who voted for this joker.

    (14) 40 Total Votes - 27 up - 13 down
    • danika says:

      Not feeling that “hopey, changey” thing, huh?

      (10) 38 Total Votes - 24 up - 14 down
    • OnTheOtherHand says:

      Why can’t the Republicans offer a rational and reasonable alternative. I didn’t like voting for Obama but I was convinced that McCain would have kept us in those wasteful middle-east wars indefinitely. Having Palin as his backup in case he died made me shudder. If you don’t like those of us who are “uncommitted” voting for someone like Obama, start to reform your own party and move it away from the coalition of extremists and corporate socialists that control it now.

      (1) 7 Total Votes - 4 up - 3 down
  7. danika says:

    Someday people will be able to smoke their medical marijuana without fear of the Feds. Someday people will rise up and say “Enough!”. I just hope that someday is in my lifetime.

    (20) 38 Total Votes - 29 up - 9 down
    • wolfhound says:

      Yes, that may happen soon, if Canada legalizes MJ.

      Just last week after a policy resolution debate, 77% of Liberals voted in favor of legalizing the substance-and hope to see it in the next party platform in 2015.

      They reason that prohibition and the 40-year-long ‘War on Drugs’ have only led to pot being more widely accessible, taxpayers considerably poorer, gangs richer and thousands upon thousands of otherwise law-abiding citizens banded ‘criminal, according to one article.

      The resolution was pushed by ‘Young Liberals’ that want to legalize MJ and ensure the regulation and taxation of its production, distribution, and use, while enacting strict penalties for illegal trafficking, illegal importation, and impaired driving.

      If that should happen America will have another long rather uninhabited border to monitor more closely than it is today, at a great cost..

      (2) 8 Total Votes - 5 up - 3 down

Comments are closed.