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DEA Targets 23 Washington State Medical Marijuana Collectives For Closure


seattleDEA Sends Letters To 23 Medical Marijuana Collectives – Close Or Else!

by Big Buddha

… and the lies continue.

Late Thursday afternoon the DEA sent out 23 notices to medical marijuana collectives located in Western Washington state. The intent of these letters was to notify 23 pot shops… and warn them that if they did not cease operations within 30 days, they would be arrested, their marijuana would be seized and the landlord’s property would be confiscated.

When word got out of the DEA’s most recent letter writing campaign aimed at crushing the spirit of both the collective owner, and the intent of the law. The first question on everyone’s mind was who receiving these letters? As both the Washington State U.S. attorney’s office — and the Drug Enforcement Administration — had shown strong support for these unwarranted threats; the obvious question is who are these 23 collectives?

While Western Washington has been a little late to the “Feds v. State” mmj game, Mr. Matthew G. Barnes — the DEA’s ‘main man’ in the Seattle area, threatened that there would be many “more letters” to follow. The sinister tone of these letters is aimed at undermining the property owners – and their sense of constitutional rights. As such, the ominous subtext to these letters – is that should the property owner decide not to kick out their current tenant. They will be criminally prosecuted and face the very real likelihood – they would also lose their property through the forfeiture process.

These letters sent out by the US attorney’s office, were similar in nature to the ones written and sent to many of the medical marijuana collectives in Colorado, Northern California and Oregon. These letters have sparked a much-needed debate surrounding the 10th amendment. As the federal actions have more often than not – collided – with state medical marijuana laws, which have been voter approved. The feds claim to be targeting marijuana superstores and those which may be too close to schools, despite the states regulations that have disallowed collectives from locating closer than 1000 feet to any K-12 institution.

“I am confident that once notified of the ramifications and penalties associated with renting a property for marijuana distribution purposes, property owners will take appropriate steps to rectify the situation on their own.  The DEA will not turn a blind eye to criminal organizations that attempt to use state or local law as a shield for their illicit drug trafficking activities,” Barnes said in a statement. source

Washington’s medical marijuana situation is a bit of a strange bird. In 2011 the Washington state legislature had managed to pass a law that would have legalized medical marijuana and the collectives that distribute it. But as Gov. Chris Gregorie was not on board with the whole “medical marijuana” idea, he vetoed the law. As a direct result of this, the state of Washington was left with one of the more under regulated medicinal pot industries in the entire country.

Now – in the state of Washington, 10 patients can gather together in order to grow a 45 marijuana plant “collective gardening co-op.” Washington’s marijuana law permits their local municipalities to regulate these rapidly growing pot  operations. With more than 140 collectives operating in the greater Seattle area the city has gone to great lengths to make sure that they are properly regulated and licensed, in addition to pain all of their taxes. As initiative 502 fires up a heated debate within the state of Washington  the timing of the DEA’s announcement to crack down on Washington state medical marijuana industry is no coincidence.

This post originally appeared on Marijuana.com and was republished with special permission.


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  1. I am 77 years of age. Never did any kind of drugs in my entire life. I wouldn’t even
    take an aspirin. In saying that I have been among people that were smoking cannabis throughout the years and my thoughts are this. It is a natural growing
    plant that at best causes people to relax. I have never seen a fight or violent argument erupt with these users but alcohol, which is legal I am deathly afraid of. It is only a matter of time when you are among drinkers of alcohol before someone has one too many or turns nasty so I get out of those social events as quickly as is
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    As I stated earlier I never saw the need to use drugs or alcohol but as I have grown
    older the so called Prescription drugs are the ones I fear most. Blood pressure pills are deadly and prescribed for millions. cholesterol, sleepers, uppers, mood stabilizers the list goes on and on and people in my opinion are sicker than they ever were. My grandparents both died at a late age, my grandmother did like her
    Guiness, my grandfather only a “hot toddy” at Christmas. They took no RX drugs for anything and if you measure their daily diet by the charts recommended today they ate very unhealthy, yet never needed to see a Dr. The pharmaceutical companies would not have liked that era., For God’s sake legalize the plant and make it safer for the users. Take the dollars from the drug dealers and put the
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  2. Take a list and write all the pros and cons of smoking whatever joint or a tobacco… And show the list to a non smoker for hist opinion, you will remember how you used to think “right”. Many fall into this smoking from curiosity but whatever feeling marijuana can gives you, it is not something real that makes you high, it is a drug… Find real things in life to makes you high. I really support that.. http://cheap-seeds.nl

  3. Jay, I agree with your positions and it is as an mmj activist that I make this hopefully constructive criticism: you need to have someone proof read these editorials! If someone from outside our community were to read this and note that it would get a failing grade in an English 101 class, it might give them the impression that we can’t be taken seriously. The sentence fragments and missing punctuation in particular make this a difficult vehicle for a concise argument.

  4. As of yesterday, 23 more collectives were served with a letter from the DEA/Feds. One of those collectives was the one fighting the City of Kent that also provides for 11 terminal patients. One of the very few Collectives that offers compassion care for patient’s in need. The letter states the 1000 feet of school or other Federal Law violation. With that to me being a clear indication that Cannabi
    s is Federally illegal, and the Federal Government doesn’t care what Washington state voters have put into effect. Why would they go after the back alley drug dealers that are not testing the medications, are carry weapons, and shoot back at them when they can attack easy targets~Sick and suffering medical patients whom are just good people trying to help others in need! Raids= $$$ in their pockets~ I don’t know about you, but it makes me sick to my stomach!

  5. here we go again …. RESCHEDULE is the only way to be rid of the fed but they are calling the shots in this also…. Our goverment has their head in the sand so deep that is is impossable for them to think… Its time to move. FREE da WEED ITS A PLANT.

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