On Thursday, Drug Enforcement Agents raided two Los Angeles medical marijuana dispensaries. The shops affected, one in LA and another in Westwood, were sister stores both named ‘The Farmacy.’ The store’s manager told the Huffington Post, “We are completely in the dark as to why this happened.” The stores have been in operation for almost 10 years before this sudden raid.
Store employees were handcuffed and detained for more than an hour, but later released. An agent on site told the Huff Post that the raid was, “Less about running the shop and more about running of the business. If this was simply about somebody selling marijuana in West Hollywood, the DEA wouldn’t be here.” The agent went on to say, “I think for those people who champion the cause of marijuana, particularly medical marijuana, I think it’s important that they hold shops to a high standard. What’s going to happen is shops like this are going to ruin it for everyone.”
The Farmacy’s attorney Bill Kroger says the club has done nothing wrong. “I represent a lot of medical marijuana clubs in LA and The Farmacy is the most compliant club in Los Angeles,” Kroger says. An LA Times article from 2007 (when the dispensary was first raided) shares the same sentiment siting that the dispensary uses legitimate doctors and limits customer purchases to less than the legal maximums.
The war on legitimate marijuana establishments has been a mixed bag under the Obama administration. Although the DEA has been more lax in it’s approach to states with their own legislation, under Obama there have been over 270 medical marijuana raids. This, even after he said “I’m not going to be using Justice Department resources to try to circumvent state laws,” back in 2008.
If the DEA’s statement is true, and the situation was, “Less about running the shop and more about running of the business,” you might think they would just send in some tax auditors rather than confiscating products and handcuffing employees.
Considering that the some of the last statements from the DEA and Department of Justice call marijuana “A significant source of revenue for large-scale criminal enterprises, gangs, and cartels,” its hard to believe that these are the people posing a threat to our society. Here are a few pictures of the storefront and staff, you tell me: criminal enterprise?