Feds Block Security, Armored Car Companies From Cash-Only Marijuana Clubs

Categories: Marijuana

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Medical marijuana dispensaries don't cause crime, studies have shown. In fact, they may prevent it. So why is the federal Justice Department doing everything it can to make pot clubs ideal robbery targets?

Last year, the feds told credit card companies to stop doing business with California's legal medical cannabis dispensaries. This was after they'd given the same directive to banks. And now that medical marijuana retailers are cash-only -- and need a means to deliver large amounts of cash to entities like the state Board of Equalization -- the feds have made them unsafe.

The DEA has informed security and armored car companies -- a necessity in a cash-only business -- to stop working with cannabis dispensaries or face penalties of money laundering and other charges, cannabis industry representatives announced yesterday.

The move is the latest clamp-down in President Barack Obama's cold war against California's taxpaying dispensaries.

The move to halt security companies from guarding and armored car companies, including Dunbar, from visiting places like Harborside Health Center -- which deals in upwards of $25 million in sales a year, all cash -- was first announced by Harborside CEO Steve DeAngelo.

In an interview with MMJ Business Daily -- the first outlet to break news of the feds' move to make medical marijuana businesses less safe -- DeAngelo said that the local Dunbar affiliate had been informed by corporate headquarters of the DEA pressure, and that federal agents went as far as to "interview" armored car drivers to ensure their clients weren't pot clubs.

"The federal government appears willing to do anything that will turn this inherently safe plant into something dangerous, no matter the impact on public health or safety," DeAngelo told the marijuana business Web site, adding that he's now trying to find an alternative solution to the twice-daily cash deliveries.

Harborside pays over $1 million a year to the City of Oakland alone, and owes the state of California 8 percent in sales taxes.

Other dispensaries in Colorado and California have also lost their links with security and armored car companies, but many others are not talking about it publicly out of safety concerns, according to Gaynell Rogers, a Harborside spokeswoman.

DEA Special Agent Karl Nichols, a San Francisco-based spokesman, told SF Weekly on Thursday that he had "no knowledge" of any such action.

However, he did note that anyone doing business with someone "engaging in illegal activity" did run the risk of violating "money laundering" and other statutes. In other words, Dunbar and others do risk federal prosecution solely for doing business with a state-legal enterprise.

While we were waiting for Nichols to hear back from his bosses in DC, the Huffington Post reported that the DEA had confirmed the move, but did not cite a source.

The move may befuddle, as Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder have said repeatedly that the federal government will respect operations in compliance with state law. However, their actions have continuously contradicted that -- and in an insidious way, it's becoming downright evil.

"The true nature of the Obama Administration's approach to voter-approved medical marijuana is now clear," Aaron Smith of the National Cannabis Industry Association said in a press release. "They want more cash underground. They want our streets to be more dangerous. They want the lives of state-licensed providers endangered."




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8 comments
natebaux
natebaux

wake up illinois. this is your fate. look at what you are about to dump your time and resources into. a big black hole. there is no protection for you.

 no banks, no armed guards, no armored cars. they want to leave the door wide open for them to drive in, load up your cash, and drive away with the spoils of war. THEY, will be armed to the teeth however. 400k bear-cat, 2k in body armor PER MAN, automatic weapons w/hollow point ammo, flash-bangs, tear-gas, dogs, batons and handcuffs. a troop of girl scouts could walk into one of these places armed with a box of cookies, even the crappy ones, and totally loot the joint from head-to-toe.


how many of you will stand by passively while they put you in a cage?

fuck the law. burn them. burn them all.

natebaux
natebaux

once again, why do we need the fed? they will never tell the truth about anything. its one lie after another, all while sticking a hand in your pocket to grab your cash. its sick, disgusting, and im ready to open fire.

thats right. mow the bastards down, ambush style. bring fallujah to their door step. track the bastards to their house. lets see how they like 10 armed thugs shoving their face in the dirt at 2am. the states want to set us up for failure, and wont budge to keep us safe.

  im officially of the opinion the federal government is an occupying enemy force, and should be treated as such. not going to happen when half the country is either on the payroll or food stamps. people cant admit it. if they did, it would be an admission they stood down while everything that was ours was stolen away, under the guise of law. its time for justice, not law.

dizzzz
dizzzz

Good ol' Barack.  I was never sold on this guy (the lesser of evils, twice in a row) and I never saw him as this great liberal, just more of the same only, well, a different color.

That said, I would have voted for him the first time because of that different color ( and yes, because he was a democrat).  It was about bloody time, don't you think?  I'm honestly not sure the second time.  Gitmo, the wars that drag on, the pot thing, NSA.  You get the picture.

mrericsir
mrericsir topcommenter

Once again, the feds are practically begging the pot clubs to do their business under the table. Because of this, local governments lose out on sales tax revenue.  They should be pressuring the feds to end this nonsense.

natebaux
natebaux

@mrericsir they wont pressure because they already know....you cant reason with an occupying enemy force. until the sheriff tells them to pack up the traveling rodeo show and take it back to district of columbia. as far as im concerned, that is the only place they have jurisdiction. argue all you want, im not listening. its a play i took out of their book, and it seems to work quiet well.

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