by: Mike Barrett
July 30, 2012
Earlier this month it was reported that the federal government plans on shutting down the largest medical marijuana dispensary operator in California known as Harborside Health Center. Two dispensaries, one in Oakland and another in San Jose, are in the process of being seized by authorities, where both locations were gifted with copies of the federal Complaint for Forfeiture taped on their front doors. The papers, taped on the doors on Tuesday July 10, stated that the dispensaries were “operating in violation of federal law.”
Largest Operated California Medical Marijuana Dispensary Targeted
Needless to say, those who support medical marijuana and even some state officials frowned upon the federal government’s less than expected action. While some individuals like the U.S. attorney for Northern California, Melinda Haag, say that the action was warranted because the California medical marijuana dispensaries presented opportunities for abuse, others are rather upset. He explains:
“People are not going to stop using cannabis, they’re just going to buy it in the illegal marketplace … on the streets. Why are federal prosecutors using their discretion to do something so profoundly destructive” said Steve DeAngelo, co-founder of Haborside and leader in the movement for medical marijuana use.
Attorney General Eric H. Holder told the House Judiciary Committee in June that the federal agents were only after large-scale growers and medical marijuana dispensaries that have “come up with ways in which they are taking advantage of these state laws, and going beyond that which the states have authorized.”