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Marijuana raid: Cherry Top Farms still closed, attorney hopes for cooperation from state

Thumbnail image for cherry top farms cropped.jpg
Cherry Top.
The Cherry Top Farms dispensary wasn't the target of a DEA raid last week -- but the feds confiscated 2,500 plants anyhow.

Cherry Top's owners wanted to open up again early this week. But the dispensary's still closed at this writing -- and still losing money -- due in part to the way complicated state rules might impact restocking.

As you'll recall, federal authorities were conducting surveillance on three members of the Do family -- Nathan, Ha and Hai. The three were allegedly running an unlicensed marijuana grow in the same location that had been shut down back in June.

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One of Cherry Top's now-confiscated plants.
Law enforcers were just about to execute search warrants at the warehouse space in question when they saw suspects loading "contraband" into a truck. They followed the vehicle to Cherry Top Farms, watching as the pot was brought inside. And because marijuana remains illegal at the federal level whether it's used for medicinal purposes or not, agents subsequently seized all of Cherry Top's plants, medicines, edibles and more in addition to the truck's contents.

Attorney Bob Hoban, who also spoke to us today about the unionizing of medical marijuana workers, doesn't rail against the DEA and company for this action. In fact, he sees it as "a good sign that the federal government is working closely with the state Department of Revenue and the Medical Marijuana Enforcement Division. And the fact that they simply seized the plants and did not go out and arrest everyone on site is a good sign for our state-regulated industry."

That doesn't mean he expects the feds to return the confiscated products. "We're certainly inquiring about it," he says, but terms the prospect of that happening "highly unlikely."



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16 comments
DontWorryBeHopi
DontWorryBeHopi

There is no amount of paranoia that should cause anyone to agree to increased regulation that involves increased documentation and registration of the Medicine.

You can say all day that Colorado is going to be a "model of regulation" and that somehow that is going to keep us safe when the Bullies in the Federal Government decide to tip their hand. 

The fact of the matter is when you convince yourself that legitimacy then requires full disclosure to the authorities, so that including the Bullies in the Federal Government, you are going way to far. And you are actually living in a much larger fantasy now than the one you initially complained about, where "the industry could not continue to go on unregulated without voters souring on medicinal marijuana."

Sometimes I feel like a lot of people made too much money, got way too high, and unceremoniously decided to take unneeded precautions that in the end are going to destroy everything.

The wicked flee when none pursue. Don't be them. The backlash from the paranoia that took root earlier this year is already upon us, and how quickly it came, that we should know the electric fence is on, it shocks back, walk away dummies. 

embrace this pot clowns
embrace this pot clowns

Remember what the Cole memo says, the feds are coming in "regardless of state law". I don't know how Hoban can advise his clients that they are "safe." Talk about a malpractice suit!!! Bad legal advice. Oh, and I don't think Cherrytop was one of the 5 that have been granted a state license, so they weren't licensed anyway. All the Cheesecake arguments go right out the window, as the regs only apply to "licensed" businesses. "Unlicensed" businesses are criminal businesses as far as the DEA is concerned.   Cheesecake advises that if you "embrace" the law, you will have no problems. She should be charged with malpractice too! Embrace the law once you have a fucking license, geez, sheeple! Until then you are sitting ducks. And even afterwards, probably, considering the feds say they are comin' in "regardless of state law."

Robert Chase
Robert Chase

The cheerleaders for the State's unconstitutional laws and regulations must represent every offical depredation on those who provide cannabis as being for the greater good, but it takes an attorney to pronounce such inversions of reality as Hoban's claim that the arrest of four providers, the confiscature of 2,500 plants, and the closure of an MMC somehow constitutes "a good sign for our state-regulated industry" -- that is complete BS!  It is going to get harder and harder to maintain the fiction as arrests and closures mount, and when the ship sinks, the rats will be too busy scurrying to intone such nonsense, but it is patients who will suffer.

Robert ChaseColorado Coalition for Patients and Caregivers(720) 213-6497

Monkey
Monkey

Cant wait to get back to work for a state that offered you no protection yet collects money from you. You do realize they have all your info and can press charges years from now right? You think because they left without arresting you that you're in the clear? They know you will start up again, they want you too, it's called a trap. Now, years from now, they can say you have repeatedly and knowingly broke the law. I love how desperate people clinging to meaningless rules set up by the state still think they're safe. You call it safe, I call it building a case against you. You can't say you thought everything was cool because you have a license when the Feds took your weed, apparently it would be ok with you if they did that every month as long as they don't arrest you, really? Doesn't sound like a wise business to be in if arrest is your only concern. I think the state should fight for your rights, but you don't? And your going to pay the fee next year too, Colorado has you by the balls and you seem to like it, even after they stepped aside and watched you burn.

Cheesecake Lady
Cheesecake Lady

in regards to the Cherrytop farms raid, from the rumors I've heard the owner thought allowing the consultant to deliver plants directly to her MMC was ok because had an OPC license for his licensed MMC building and she had no idea he was delivering from another location, so she did nothing wrong... My long time readers will know that this poor owner fell right into a trap I warned you all against 2 months ago, you may recall my ranting that the only entity an MMC was allowed to deliver to was a homebound patient who had registered that MMC as their primary caregiver, and as such MMC's are not allowed to deliver Medicine to another MMC, only arrange for wholesale meds to be picked up in person by a manifested & licensed employee of the purchasing MMC. Furthermore the law is pretty clear that products must always go from center A's patient OPC directly to center A's MMC or their own state licensed Storage facility, NEVER to any other location.... The unfortunate owner could have protected her business by reading, knowing and embracing the law. Had the folks at Cherrytop known the laws regarding delivery they would have insisted on picking up their clones from the HA's licensed MMC in which case, mr Ha would likely have driven the plants in question to his own MMC from his illegal grow, and only his businesses would have been eligible to have a search warrant issued on them. On record Cherrytop would've be able to show they purchased on site in a licensed facility and there would be no ties between an illegal grow and their facility. So what we've learned today is that the only way to protect your MMC from receiving product illegally is to pick it up yourself from a licensed MMC and make sure when you are there that all state and local proper and nesc. paperwork is on display. You cant control the laws others may choose to break, but you can protect your investment by always picking up your medicine & genetics personally and making sure it is always properly manifested and documented. This just illustrates yet again my point that each of you really do yourself a favor by reading and knowing the laws.

Michael Roberts
Michael Roberts

Strong take, Monkey. We're going to make it an upcoming Comment of the Day. Congrats.

DontWorryBeHopi
DontWorryBeHopi

This man knows the enemy. "repeatedly and knowingly broke the law.", is exactly what they will say. 

Let's see if Colorado forces Cotter Corp. to come back from San Diego and build a bypass tunnel to divert the massive amounts of uranium that have been leaking into Ralston Reservoir for the last 10+ years.

Colorado state gov. will continue to be bullied by the outside world while at best they will feel bad about not protecting our interests. Hickenlooper is a drunk who does not have an iota of compassion or empathy for any of us. 

guest
guest

Mr. Hoban's clients weren't arrested, he represents Cherry Top Farms, not the growers who were the targets of the raid. They are two separate groups of people, and the Do family aren't represented by Hoban, according to this article.

DontWorryBeHopi
DontWorryBeHopi

Just to clarify ... 

We voted to be able to possess a certain amount of Marijuana, it was never in the rules that we had to have documented, registered marijuana, or that it needed to be "properly manifested." 

So are we to believe that if we are moving Medicine around amongst each other (Cardholders) that we are doing something wrong by not registering and documenting our transactions? 

Because if that is the direction we are heading than we have made a grave mistake somewhere recently. 

High Country Caregiver
High Country Caregiver

Hey Hopi, move all the medicine around that you want, screw the regulations and the dispensary douchies, let's all just get high and have fun!  I love smoking weed!  Just say it and free yourself from the medical pot clowns.

Lady
Lady

No Sir, patient based transport of no more than 2 ounces is still ok, my comments concern state license pending (ok we'll call all but the 5, MMCs license pending for all you semantics sticklers out there) MMCs. My intent is to show how an MMC understanding and operating within the parameters of the law would not have been subject to these problems. I dont love the laws, they suck, but I like it even less when people remain ignorant and that lack of knowledge leads to the lose of even one toehold that has been granted to MMJ patients, we cannot afford to lose one MMC ever... People need to read the laws so they wont make a dumb mistake like this. The sad fact is this news should not be coming from me, but should have been addressed months ago by the high $$$ atty who is scrambling to get his client back open like they always would have been had he taken the time to read and understood and explained these issues to his clients instead of jet setting around all day to lobbyist meetings... I make no apologies for giving info here that might help another MMC avoid this mistake and remain in business. 

High Country Caregiver
High Country Caregiver

Also, the medical cocaine / marijuana Center in Carbondale appears to be a loss.  From the DOR website:

http://www.colorado.gov/cs/Sat...

Take note that this is the second drug bust in a week that the DOR has pointed the finger in busting / narcing on.

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