|It’s important to remember that the possession of marijuana — for any purpose, even lab testing — is still illegal under federal law, without a DEA license. And if you ask for a license, they will come search you.|
As Colorado’s fledgling medical marijuana industry goes through some growth pains related to its profitable proliferation, a few lessons are being learned (relearned?) here and there.
And one of the most important of these is:
Never invite the federal Drug Enforcement Administration over to your place when there’s pot everywhere.
Employees of Denver marijuana testing facility Full Spectrum Laboratories learned that recently, after formally applying for an analytical lab license through the DEA, reports Joel Warner at Westword.
Turns out, applying for a DEA license means that you’re inviting them over for a visit.
“If a business applies for a DEA registration, we have to conduct a site survey,” said special agent Mike Turner.
“If we do that and we see controlled substances in violation of federal law, we are not going to turn our back on that,” Turner said.
Betty Aldworth, Full Spectrum’s director of outreach, said they were caught off guard by the raid, which happened while the lab’s owners were at the Capitol testifying against a restrictive medical marijuana bill.
“We didn’t need to do that [applying for the DEA license], but we thought it was the right thing to do,” Aldworth said at the time.
So, how’s that license application going? Not so well, apparently.
“If, during the inspection of a location, the business is found to be violating federal law, I wouldn’t think that would be in their favor,” DEA Special Agent Turner said.