When Cannabis Goes Bad: Raids! Raids! Raids
by Marc Wasserman
Nothing like a good meth lab being raided and taken down! Nothing like a coordinated raid to take down whit collar criminals! When most people think of raids that’s what we typically see in the movies and on TV. The reality is a large majority of raids center around cannabis. Particularly in our jurisdiction of California. You either have a city permit AND a state license or you are in the traditional (legacy) market. Due to massive over regulations, over taxation and many built in obstacles the average mom and pop operations have absolutely zero chance of survival. In fact, many licensed businesses have already gone under or are so far in the red that they are trying to escape. Meanwhile, on the other side of the law, business is booming. But, as with every booming business the state wants its tax. So, even if you are a legitimate Cannabis Patient (Under California’s Prop 215) and you are growing your 85 plants that you use as medicine throughout the year, you are still subject to a raid and confiscation of your medicine.
Everyday we get calls of patients who are still being raided. These are not coordinated raids either. An electrical fire starts, the fire department comes, sees a grow then calls the cops. The cops do not care that the patient has rights under prop 215, this MUST be an illegal grow, one person cannot use all this. These are common phrases seen in rubber stamped police reports. The unfortunate truth is that for Cannabis Patients in California, the cultivation, consumption and transportation of medicinal cannabis is a CRIME first and you must then PROVE you are immune from prosecution under Prop 215.
How do you prove this? Not that simple. First you must have the physician recommendation and a declaration from the doctor who issued it. The declaration works best when it lays out all of the patient's medical needs and a statement as to why Cannabis is the best medicine over other opiate alternatives. Then since we have 85 plants, a Cannabis expert must be used to explain how the harvest of 85 plants works, what the actual yield will be, how the flower will be broken down into rubs, oils, tea, foods, joints, etc…and thus explaining how 85 plants can be used for one person's medicine over time. This is how we have to defend people who are raided.
Of course a lot of these raids are people who are working under the cover of these patients rights and are abusing the power of Prop 215, while making it more difficult for those seriously ill patients who are on the receiving end of unfortunate, wrong place wrong time raids.
The bottom line for me is that these raids on cannabis farms, grows, homes, wherever they are, need to just stop happening. There need to be regulations that allow for those who are thriving in the traditional market to slide over into the licensed legal market. There is room for everyone and Cannabis can save the Planet, if we stop raiding people.