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Jars full of medical marijuana are seen at Sunset Junction medical marijuana dispensary.
As part of an ongoing effort to eliminate illegal marijuana businesses in California, Federal authorities have taken a series of actions against 70 stores in the City of Los Angeles and one store known to be operating in Huntington Park. In federal court yesterday, prosecutors filed three asset forfeiture lawsuits against properties where marijuana stores are located. Authorities executed federal search warrants at three other stores while prosecutors also sent warning letters to individuals connected with at least 68 marijuana businesses. Many of the stores are located in downtown Los Angeles and in the neighborhood of Eagle Rock.
The federal actions were carried out in cooperation with local authorities. The state Supreme Court is expected to address whether local governments can ban medical marijuana clinics, but a hearing has not been set. Additionally, Los Angeles could soon face a referendum on the most recent ban approved by the city council. Council members must decide by next week whether to call a special election for the measure, repeal it themselves or put it on next year’s ballot.
What does this latest crackdown mean for marijuana dispensaries, both legal and illegal, in Los Angeles?
Thom Mrozek, public affairs officer for the U.S. Attorney, Central District of California
Frank Stoltze, KPCC reporter