Politics, government and public life for Southern California

City Attorney's office goes after illegal medical marijuana clinics

Mike Feuer

Alice Walton/KPCC

City Attorney Mike Feuer talked about efforts to clean up medical marijuana dispensaries during a morning briefing with reporters.

More than 40 medical marijuana clinics have voluntarily closed since the city's new pot shop regulations took effect in July, City Attorney Mike Feuer said Friday. 

Another 38 dispensaries that refused to close are being prosecuted. Proposition D, approved by voters in May, banned all medical marijuana businesses in Los Angeles except for 135 that registered with the city in 2007 and continued to pay business taxes. 

"There's a consistency to this process that differs from what we've seen in the past," Feuer said. "We're trying to impose some clarity given the rules that the voters put in place."

The City Attorney's office sent letters to 850 other clinics believed to be in business, and Feuer said that will likely lead to additional prosecutions. Even though marijuana may be used for medicinal purposes in California, pot shops could still face penalties from federal authorities. 

The city attorney made his comments in a morning briefing with reporters. Feuer was sworn in as city attorney July 1.

"It is a new day on so many levels," Feuer said. "Whether it comes to the effective enforcement of our marijuana laws or to the way this office works with neighborhoods and our other leaders in city government. We're moving forward in a new direction."

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