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2/6/2014 6:00:00 AM
Police: Marijuana dispensaries are breaking the law
Doug McMurdo
Miner Staff Reporter

NEEDLES, Calif. - Nearly 500 pounds of medical marijuana and marijuana products, guns and cash were seized last week from multiple dispensaries and residences in Needles, Calif., as well as residences in Lake Havasu City and Bullhead City following an investigation involving law enforcement in two states.

According to John McMahon, the sheriff-coroner of San Bernardino County, people who live in Arizona are buying medical marijuana from dispensaries in Needles, using false California identification cards and other information to do so, which is in violation of California's medical marijuana laws.

Additionally, people who own or operate dispensaries in Needles are required to live in California but actually live in Arizona, he said, which is illegal according to California's law, known as the Compassionate Use Act.

Both buyers and sellers allegedly falsified their addresses when they applied for a medical marijuana card or a license to run a dispensary, according to McMahon.

Thirteen search warrants were served the last two days of January, said McMahon. The San Bernardino Sheriff's Narcotics Division Marijuana Team and the Mohave Area General Narcotics Enforcement Team served warrants at three dispensaries and four homes in Needles, and one at a home in Lake Havasu City on Jan. 30. The next day they served warrants at other homes and dispensaries in Needles and one at a home in Bullhead City, said McMahon.

In addition to the nearly 500 pounds of medical marijuana that was seized in total, McMahon said detectives also confiscated a large quantity of edible marijuana products, 2,500 grams of Butane Honey Oil Wax that is used to make hash oil, several firearms and an unspecified amount of U.S. currency.

McMahon said a report would be forwarded to San Bernardino District Attorney Michael Ramos for review of possible criminal charges.

One suspect, he said, is wanted for alleged illegal possession of firearms.

The investigation continues and McMahon said anyone with information can call the Sheriff's Narcotics Division at (909) 890-4840, or anonymously report at the We-Tip Hotline, (800) 782-7463, or online at

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Reader Comments

Posted: Wednesday, April 9, 2014
Article comment by: Mhm right...

"What would Jesus do? He wouldn't smoke pot and I feel sure he doesn't want us smoking it either."

Even god spoke through the burning bush.

Posted: Saturday, February 8, 2014
Article comment by: Oh Really?

"There is absolutely, positively NO GOOD REASON to legalize marijuana."

Let's see, we have been fighting a drug war for nearly a century. We spend $50 billion per year trying to eradicate drugs from this country and we capture less than 10 percent of all illicit drugs. Has the cost of the War on Drugs in terms of billions of dollars, blighted lives, jammed prisons, intensified racism, needless deaths, loss of freedom etc., produced any significant change in drug availability or perceived patterns of drug use? How many of the 45 million drug users do incarcerate in order to win the war on drugs? Why does the FDA stand up for the right of adults to smoke tobacco, which is highly addictive and causes over 400,000 deaths per year, while decreeing that adults have no right to smoke marijuana, which is non-addictive and kills no one? Alcohol costs thousands of lives, and alcoholism is an accredited disease, but anyone age 21 or older can go to the liquor store and buy alcohol. Drug use is an acknowledged fact of life in every prison in the country. If we can't stop prisoner use of drugs, how can we rationally expect to stop average free citizens from using them? There's no chance at victory. All I see is a lot of hypocrisy and $50 Billion reasons to legalize it.

Posted: Saturday, February 8, 2014
Article comment by: bob marley

Who cares?

Isn't it just a matter of time before buying pot will be like going to the liquor store?

Like most things, if you're paying your own way it's probably none of my business. As soon as taxpayers are expected to pay for your habit though - I'm against it.

Posted: Friday, February 7, 2014
Article comment by: Linda Athens

ABC and many others report pot smokers are twice as likely to cause auto accidents - more pot smokers cause FATAL accidents.

I will take the advice and knowledge of Dr. Ben Carson, world renowned brain surgeon who has spoken about pot on TV. He has confirmed it causes brain damage and many other "not good" things. He's seen brains from the inside out so perhaps he should know.

What would Jesus do? He wouldn't smoke pot and I feel sure he doesn't want us smoking it either. There is absolutely, positively NO GOOD REASON to legalize marijuana. NONE! And if you can't see that, then I feel certain you are already an addicted pot smoker.

Posted: Friday, February 7, 2014
Article comment by: Uncle Anson

Let's see now...the potus says it's no more dangerous than alcohol.....traffic deaths involving marijuana have relaxes kills pain....all irrefutable fact. Recreational use? The continuing dumbing down of America continues.

Posted: Friday, February 7, 2014
Article comment by: I Think Not!

" Within two weeks I lost my job and my house and soon thereafter I had robbed 3 banks just to support my marijuana habit."

If I have ever seen a story that was completely NON-believable it is yours. Your story doesn't even make sense and as Judge Judy always says, "If it don't make sense, then it's not true"! In the sixty plus years I've been alive, I have never known or heard of anybody being addicted to pot and trust me when I say I have had first hand experience.

Posted: Friday, February 7, 2014
Article comment by: It Just Isn't Worth It

I did not do drugs my whole life and I was a very successful person with a great job, nice home, fancy cars, a wife and kids. One day at a party I did marijuana, thought it would be the cool thing to do.....everybody was doing it. Within two weeks I lost my job and my house and soon thereafter I had robbed 3 banks just to support my marijuana habit. Within a year I was living on the streets begging for money not to feed or house myself but to do more marijuana, that's all I thought about was how to get my next hit. I got myself clean now, it was the hardest thing I ever had to do. It all started at that party and the first time I did some marijuana, it just isn't worth it.

Posted: Friday, February 7, 2014
Article comment by: Here we go Again

First were talking about people abusing the system. Hello...Thats going to happen with anything and most everything that involves money. Yes a few people falsified address's to live in AZ and have a pot shop in CA. Why you ask....Simple. Have you compared the requirements and liquid asset amounts placed on dispensary licenses for AZ. Its alot less hassle and investment to open in cali.

So far as lying to get a card. Of course there will be people who abuse that as well. The same bunch that parks in handicap spaces, toss's trash out of car windows, and steals candy from a babies mouth. People of low morals.. We have no shortage of those EVERYWHERE. They should be held accountible same as anyone else caught

Im sure our hometown Know it all and family will never admit that being unexperienced with Marijuana grants them only an opinion based on heresay.

You want to know the effects of Marijuana...LIGHT UP and find out for yourself before you start running your mouth. YOU know Nothing except what you want to believe.

I love the "stoned driver" bit...With all the drunks, cell phones idiots, and prescription drug abusers, the pot smokers hardly make a blip on the radar in reality concerning impaired drivers.

Posted: Friday, February 7, 2014
Article comment by: Just saying

Our politicians have it right. They know if they give all these people there pot and they stay stoned all the time that they aren't paying attention to what is going on in DC. Doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure that out.

Posted: Friday, February 7, 2014
Article comment by: English Teacher

@ Linda Athens: Its interesting that you reference the degrees of medical professionals who agree with your position on this topic. However, you consistently disregard the expertise of every single professional who posts on this site, but doesn't align with your ideology on any number of topics.

Posted: Friday, February 7, 2014
Article comment by: justanobody sr

and pot users will continue to spout off on how great pot is, when in reality is does cause brain damage, it does make people lazy, and NON productive.
but then again pot smokers never were very productive anyhow, so I guess its a wash.
repeating what is NOT true , will never make pot beneficial!

Posted: Friday, February 7, 2014
Article comment by: Oh Ya

This kind of stuff wouldn't happen if they'd just go to church or find a place that gets them up at 5 a.m. to pray for at least an hour.

Posted: Thursday, February 6, 2014
Article comment by: Ron Regan

To Linda Athens, not saying that all you said is wrong but you really need to do research on this topic before you start talking about thing you have no idea about, pot has be used sent the early Asian culture before Christ was around also Native Americans have been doing the same to treat, also there has been research done that proves that using the chemicals from pot can slow or even stop the cancer cells from growing, then you need to look at the tax money that comes in from this just look up CO on pot tax income they are getting, and for your son he has no idea what he is talking about and the reason for that is that I have research this topic with other researchers from other countries and been doing this more years then he is old and there is nothing every said that this cannot help a person what you hear is what the media wants you to hear do research on this topic, and one last thing sense we are talking about the pot heads that just want to get stone did you know that the big drug companies that run the government has had a pill on the market sense the 80's which I guess is when you were born, the only problem is that this pill has 100 times the THC in it then any pot plant that is out there.

Posted: Thursday, February 6, 2014
Article comment by: Don't Waste My Tax Dollars

Dear Mr. Obama

Please stop wasting my tax dollars on a plant that has ZERO DEATHS attributed to it's use and can actually increase Tax revenue. Just like prohibition didn't work with alcohol, it doesn't work with marijuana.

Posted: Thursday, February 6, 2014
Article comment by: Donald Kacalek

unspecified amount of U.S. currency. Sounds like the cops are getting Rich.

Posted: Thursday, February 6, 2014
Article comment by: Mmm K

What, are you kidding??? The whole "medical" marijuana industry is a farce..."patients" go in to see a "doctor" who says they're "sick." They pay the necessary fees and they get the license to buy from dispensaries. It's a joke. If it's going to be medicinal, treat it as a medicine but why does the state play semantics when they know so many people are getting the okay to use for the sole purpose of using it for recreational use?

Posted: Thursday, February 6, 2014
Article comment by: Tj Denton

Do something that matters already!! Pointless Waste of everyones time and money, and no one appreciates it.

Posted: Thursday, February 6, 2014
Article comment by: Linda Athens

For goodness sakes! You mean to tell us these marijuana pushing people have actually been found to break the law, falsify addresses and ID cards, etc.

Well, who knew.

I assumed since we seemed to need marijuana legalized so badly for all those terribly ill young people that just can't make it through a day without some weed, that everyone would just follow the rules.

An actual medical person recently told me there isn't any disease on earth that we don't have other pain medications for and the pot thing is all a big hoax. But this person just had a medical degree so what would he know anyway?

My Grandson has a biology degree, headed towards being a pharmacist, and he, apparently wrongly, believes the same as this medical person, that there isn't a need for pot except for potheads who want to lay around stoned.

Then I read a report that many car accidents are caused by drivers on marijuana. Forgot to write the actual stats down but it was amazing.

Posted: Thursday, February 6, 2014
Article comment by: cover enforcement costs

Has anyone considered selling the confiscated dope to the dispensaries rather then destroy it? This could help with the overwhelming cost to the tax payer, consider it recycling.

Posted: Thursday, February 6, 2014
Article comment by: Maxwell Gibbons

Under federal law, marijuana is treated like every other controlled substance, such as cocaine and heroin. The federal government places every controlled substance in a schedule, in principle according to its relative potential for abuse and medicinal value. Under the CSA, marijuana is classified as a Schedule I drug, which means that the federal government views marijuana as highly addictive and having no medical value. Doctors may not "prescribe" marijuana for medical use under federal law, though they can "recommend" its use under the First Amendment.

Posted: Thursday, February 6, 2014
Article comment by: Nancy Jane

"Both buyers and sellers allegedly falsified their addresses when they applied for a medical marijuana card or a license to run a dispensary, according to McMahon."

Wow!!! What and where were the checks and balances?????

This incident casts a dark shadow for medical marijuana patients obeying the law. HMMMM????

Enough said.

Posted: Thursday, February 6, 2014
Article comment by: Tom Beller

What a surprise! Our politicians actually believe these dispensaries are the answers to the states fiscal woes. It appears the vetting process is about as sound as Washington's vetting programs. If you believe the operators of these joints are trying to help the chronically pained, then I've got some petroleum rich property in for sale in Yucca.

Posted: Thursday, February 6, 2014
Article comment by: The Fox Hound

I'm sure it makes these cops feel great when they bust in to a place with guns drawn and push everybody around and then take there products and their guns as well. But the question is does it bring us any closer to solving the problems that we do have with abuse, or is it just something that makes cops and politicians feel good. I hear all the time from conservatives that scream about us all losing our rights, but only the smarter ones like the late W. F. Buckley are for legalization. Hemp was not always illegal folks and it never caused a problem then and it won't now. Lets all grow up and stay out of peoples gardens. Lets just say that could be a real conservative position if they really wanted to go for a bigger tent. Until then the circus rolls on.

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