Marijuana and Cannabis News

DEA, Police Raid Upland, California Marijuana Dispensary
By Steve Elliott ~alapoet~ in Dispensaries, News
Monday, March 12, 2012 at 2:20 pm
G3MedsRaid.jpg
Jennifer Cappuccio Maher/San Bernardino Sun
A federal DEA agent enters G3 Holistic on Monday morning, March 12, 2012, in Upland, California. Federal agents served a search warrant at the medical marijuana dispensary, which has been at odds with the city for a couple of years.
The Drug Enforcement Administration at 9:30 on Monday morning served a search warrant at G3 Holistic, Inc., a medical marijuana dispensary that has been at odds with the city of Upland, California for a couple of years.

Seized in the raid were at least 25 pounds of marijuana and 89 pounds of medicated edible products containing cannabis, according to the DEA, report Canan Tasci and Melissa Pinion-Whitt of the San Bernardino Sun.

No arrests have been made.

DEA spokeswoman Sarah Pullen confirmed that a search warrant had been served at G3 and that the federal agency has been "working with" California Attorney General Kamala Harris's office.

Law enforcement officers also took security camera equipment and raided a safe, as well as an ATM, from the second-floor facility at 1710 West Foothill Boulevard in Upland, according to G3 President Aaron Sandusky.

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Jennifer Cappuccio Maher/San Bernardino Sun
Drug agents carry away marijuana they just stole, I mean "seized," from G3 Holistic, Monday, March 12, 2012, in Upland, California.
​Law enforcement "is acting like a terrorist organization," according to Sandusky.

DEA agents rushed into the dispensary with guns drawn around 9:30 a.m. on Monday, Sandusky said.

"I had four patients in there and they were all handcuffed and interviewed," he said.

Law enforcement agents could be seen leaving the dispensary around 11:30 a.m., with evidence bags that appeared to be full of marijuana.

Paul Chabot, an anti-marijuana wing nut who heads a fringe group called the "Coalition for a Drug Free California," claimed G3 Holistic had been "blatantly disregarding" the will of the community.

"I don't think anyone should be surprised by this action," Chabot crowed. "This business is in federal law violation from day one, and we are glad to see the DEA come into the Inland Empire."

"The community has been waiting for this day for a long time and we fully encourage additional law enforcement action in the Inland Empire from local, state and Federal authorities," Chabot said. "Our regional and statewide anti-drug coalitions will continue to request DEA assistance."

But Sandusky said it was unfortunate that California allows the DEA to act in a reckless manner against the people's will -- as expressed at the ballot box in 1996 -- and against tax-paying organizations.

"The DEA, to me, is more interested in acting like a political enforcement agency than a drug enforcement agency," Sandusky said. "It is unfortunate that they continue to steal from the people of the community."

AaronSanduskyG3Holistic.jpg
Jennifer Cappuccio Maher/San Bernardino Sun
Aaron Sandusky, president, G3 Holistic: "I had four patients in there and they were all handcuffed and interviewed"
​The Upland Police Department was "aware" of the raid and provided a "uniform presence" during the raid for "security purposes," police officials claimed.

Law enforcement officers could be seen questioning two men on the first floor of the two-story building around 10 a.m. Officers had handcuffed one of the men, but the cuffs were later removed.

Sergio Munoz, 50, of Ontario, California, was one of the two men who were being questioned by police as he was sitting in his car near G3.

"I'm clean; I have no record," said Munoz, who was not handcuffed. "I'm not scared. I've got nothing to hide. They asked if I was a customer and I said 'A customer of what?' "

The City of Upland has already wasted thousands of dollars in legal fees in their battle to stymie the will of the voters by closing G3.

chabot06_400.jpeg
Riverside Press-Enterprise
Paul Chabot, founder, Coalition for a Drug-Free California:   "[W]e are glad to see the DEA come into the Inland Empire"
​"Over the past months, I have been saying it makes little sense to be spending a half-million dollars in legal fees," Councilman Gino Filippi said. "Allow the feds to do their job and let other cities break new legal ground contesting ordinances. There is no reason for the city of Upland to spend our scarce resources on unneeded legal fees."

The lengthy court battle between the City of Upland and G3 will soon find its way to the California Supreme Court.

Federal law prohibits marijuana for any purpose, but California voters approved the use of cannabis for medicinal purposes in 1996.

Upland's zoning ordinance prohibits medical marijuana dispensaries.

The city took the co-op to court on January 6, claiming G3 was in open violation of an injunction granted in August 2010 by the West Valley Superior Court in Rancho Cucamonga.

G3 appealed that injunction to the Fourth District Court of Appeals in Riverside. The Appellate Court in June granted a stay on the injunction, allowing G3 to remain open pending the resolution of the appeal.

The Appellate Court on November 9 ruled in favor of Upland's ban, but G3 appealed that decision to the California Supreme Court, which agreed in January to review the case.

G3 closed after a DEA raid on November 1. Owners reopened the collective on December 30 because they believe a stay is still in effect since they appealed the decision and their case is still pending.

The California Supreme Court is expected to decide if cities can ban dispensaries through zoning.



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