Feds Raid Pot Shops in Denver

Nov 21, 2013

Credit njmarijuana.com

This morning (Thursday 11-21-2013) a task force of Federal and state law enforcement and the IRS carried out a series of raids on medical marijuana dispensaries and marijuana growing operations in the Denver area.

Media reports from Denver say officials broke into some facilities.  At some grow facilities marijuana plants were cut down and stacked in the snow and later removed with heavy equipment.

Aspen Public Radio spoke about the ongoing raids with Jesse Miller, one of the owners of Leaf Aspen, a medical marijuana dispensary and growing operation.

The Denver Post reports here.

“Jeff Dorschner, spokesman for the U.S. Department of Justice in Denver, said the raids were being conducted by the Drug Enforcement Administration, Internal Revenue Service criminal investigations unit, the Denver Police Department and state and local law enforcement.”

This, Dorchner said, was in accordance with a DOJ policy statement of August 29, 2013: here.

Aspen Public Radio spoke about the ongoing raids with Jesse Miller, one of the owners of Leaf Aspen, a medical marijuana dispensary and growing operation.

APR – What are you hearing about these actions by law enforcement in Denver?

Miller – My knee jerk reaction is that there is something going on where its going out of state (editor’s note: that the dispensaries being raided might have broken rules regarding sales not crossing state boundaries) from these dispensaries down there.

APR – So, it could be that these particular places are in violation and you don’t seethat the Department of Justice is suddenly coming down on the industry; so you’re not worried?

Miller – There’s some people out there with bad reputations and what not. In terms of worry, this whole industry worries me because the coin flips every day and it lands on a different side every day. Everything’s changing and nothings been put in cement in terms of…especially now. January first comes (editor’s note: 1/1/2014 is when retail sales of marijuana become legal in Colorado under terms of voter passed Amendment 64. Marijuana remain illegal under Federal law) and everyone’s ramping up to go retail. It’s just a very volatile industry to be in because of the various levels of approval we need to get.

My brain is running wild. One of my partners just called down to somebody down in Denver that we do business with and said ‘Hey I heard this rumor that this is going on,’ and he verified that somebody around the corner is going through it right now.

It could be a number of reasons. I would think we would have had some sort of much broader statement. If they were coming after all of this, I would expect it around a change of President and administration.

APR -Although, it is a message to the whole industry.

Miller - Yes.

APR - What is that message?

Miller – I’m not sure, really. It’s, I guess, follow the letter of the law. At the end of the result of this little game that’s playing out now most likely the message is going to be, obey the rules.

But, at the same time we’ve been thinking that, Denver and where its situated and everything (is) going to be the first place that they hit if they do come in to shut us down statewide.

APR – Thank you very much for talking with me.

Miller – Yeah, no problem.