Archive for August 2013

Liquor Control Board Conducting Unannounced Visits to Medical Collectives

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LadyBuds Inc., a collective garden located in Black Diamond, WA, reported yesterday over Facebook about an unannounced visit by a Washington State Liquor Control Board officer to her collective garden site.

We followed up immediately by contacting the owner and the LCB officer.

Here’s the post from LadyBuds

“Liquor Control Board just stopped by (Officer Diana Peters). Seriously. They said they wanted a ‘tour’ of our facility. We said, “No, not without the proper paperwork – which would be a medical authorization (valid, of course) or a search warrant.” They also went on to say, “That they are the people who will be regulating us.” NOT KIDDING FOLKS. LCB just came in to tell us that they will be regulating us! We aren’t recreational – we haven’t applied for a recreational license. We are for medical! 502 states that LCB has no control over medical marijuana!”
https://www.facebook.com/L.Buds/posts/449688455144387

She then stated, “Well we denied them entrance because they (female Diana Peters and her tag-along male friend) did not have medical authorization nor did they have a search warrant. So, they left and I called the lawyer and posted this situation all over facebook. (We encourage people to SHARE this – btw).”

420leaks contacted the owner by phone and confirmed the story.  We have also asked the media contact person at the Liquor Control Board for their official response an have sent in a public records request on this or any other, or any training that involves making unannounced visits to medical collectives where they have no authority to be.

We also asked for a received a response directly from Officer Peters.  She obviously thought we were the owners…

Subject: RE: Your help would be appreciated
Date: Sat, 31 Aug 2013 09:41:26 -0700
From: DCP@LIQ.WA.GOV
To: changingplanet@hotmail.com

Sir, my visit was merely to gain “personnel” understanding of a “medical marijuana facility.”  Yes, the state is in the process of regulating the marijuana but we are not taking any enforcement actions until next year and that would still “not pertain to your establishment.”   My intent was only to gain a understanding from your staff.  I had done a routine unannounced premise check at the “Liquor Store” beside your business and thought I’d ask.  We have other Officers in the Seattle area that have been given complimentary tours by other “Medical Marijuana Facilities” and they gained a wonderful understanding and I was just hoping for the same.

I had a “ride a long” that also wanted education in your field.  You sir, are the “experts” pertaining to this.

I apologies for any inconvenience  or added concerns this may have caused. 

If I can help you out in any way, please don’t hesitate to call or email.

Thank you again,

 Officer Diana C Peters #489

Tukwila Enforcement & Education Division

14900 Interurban Ave. South; Suite 120

Tukwila, WA 98168

Cell:  (206) 200-2727

Fax:   (206) 439-3700

dcp@liq.wa.gov

Here’s the card she left for the collective…

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What’s going on here?  The WSLCB is a rogue agency out of control.  This needs to stop now.  Our medical rights are getting trashed by this state in it’s desire to extract wealth from the most vulnerable in our society.

Ben Livington from Seattle’s, “The Stranger” has obtained more information from the LCB’s Rick Garza:

“”We’re gonna have to figure out why one of our officers felt the need to visit a dispensary,” says Garza. “We have not instructed enforcement staff to do anything related to medical marijuana dispensaries, and as you probably know, we don’t have authority over medical cannabis.”

“Some people are paranoid that the liquor board is out to close down all the medical dispensaries and that’s just not the case,” he stresses. “I’m a little embarrassed. It plays into the paranoia some people have.”

Please read Ben’s article on The Stranger at
http://slog.thestranger.com/slog/archives/2013/08/31/liquor-board-apologizes-for-dispensary-visit

Jay Inslee and “Silent” Bob Ferguson Respond to Justice Department Memo on Cannabis

NW HIDTA

(August 29, 2013 – SEATTLE, WA) At a press conference earlier today in Olympia, our state’s Governor Inslee and Attorney General Ferguson, affectionately known to us as, “Jay and Silent Bob”, announced a new memo issued by the Federal Government.

The memo included new guidelines for Federal Attorneys to use when prosecuting cannabis crimes in states that have made laws for its medical or recreational use.

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Our state officials, the press and the greeheads in the cannabis industry are taking this as a green light to move forward with their implementation of I-502 rules and regulations.

View the press conference here:

 

However, the Cannabis Action Coalition and other responsible press and watchdog groups are warning medical patients and those who would apply for licensing under the recreational model AND their spouses AND their financiers.

The criminal laws are still on the books, you are still subject to arrest and prosecution by state officials for following state laws. Your license and business papers will be used as direct evidence of a federal crime.

As always, it comes down to reading the fine print:

“As with the Department’s previous statements on this subject, this memorandum is intended solely as a guide to the exercise of investigative and prosecutorial discretion.  This memorandum does not alter in any way the Department’s authority to enforce federal law, including federal laws related to marijuana, regardless of state law.  Neither the guidance herein nor any state or local law provides a legal defense to a violation of federal law, including any civil or criminal violation of the CSA.  Even in jurisdictions with strong and effective regulatory systems, evidence that particular conduct threatens federal priorities will subject that person to entity to federal enforcement action, based on the circumstances.  This memorandum is not intended to, does not, and may not be relied upon to create any rights, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law by any party in any matter civil or criminal.  It applies prospectively to the exercise of prosecutorial discretion in future cases and does not provide defendants or subjects of enforcement action with a basis for reconsideration of any pending civil action or criminal prosecution.  Finally, nothing herein precludes investigation or prosecution, even in the absence of any one of the factors listed above, in particular circumstances where investigation and prosecution otherwise serves an important federal interest.”

For those with short attention spans, we in the medical cannabis community have been down this road before. On October 19, 2009, Attorney General Eric Holder announced formal guidelines for federal prosecutors in states that have enacted laws authorizing the use of marijuana for medical purposes.

Please read the letter here on the Justice Department’s own website:
http://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/2009/October/09-ag-1119.html

This obvious conflict is created and maintained by Federal Grant Contracts with the Washington State Patrol, Attorney General’s office and just about every city and county police force and prosecutors office.

How do you HIDTA Grant?

The State of Washington is obligated to enforce a federal drug control policy using state and local law enforcement. The state and local law enforcement agencies have signed High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA ) Grants which obligate state and local law enforcement to seize medical marijuana for the DEA. These HIDTA grants will no doubt be used to seize I-502 marijuana if they remain in effect.

So far, despite being notified of the conflicts these HIDTA grants create with the medical marijuana law and now I-502, the Washington State legislature and the Washington State Liquor Control Board has failed to ask for the dissolution of the HIDTA Grants.Until these grants are terminated I-502 participants should be advised that Washington State and local law enforcement are bound by HIDTA Grant policies and those participants could be subject to arrest, seizure and forfeiture by state and local law enforcement who are then immune from breaking state laws under the Westfall Act.

The public needs to understand that there never was going to be federal intervention on I-502 and that today’s announcement by Attorney General Holder does not ensure that I-502 participants will be safe. I-502 participants will only be safe once the banking situation is definitively decided and once state and local law enforcement gives 30 day notice to terminate all HIDTA grants in Washington State.

So to all the hopeful recreational producers, processors, retailers, their spouses and financiers, we as medical patients would like to welcome you to our nightmare, all thanks to Jay and Silent Bob’s silence on what we are calling, “The HIDTA Scandal”.

Please see the 1997 documents obtained through a FOIA request. It shows HIDTA grants were set up to combat state medical cannabis legalization efforts. It rewards police departments and courts, which were created off the backs of busting the most vulnerable people in our society, the medical patients and their providers. And HIDTA is just one of many police grants now available.

How the DEA Allows Cops to Get Around State Cannabis Laws

DEA/STATE Cross Deputization DOJ Documents by 420leaks

420leaks Project Announced At Seattle Hempfest 2013

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PRESS RELEASE
August 14, 2013

420leaks Project Announced At Seattle Hempfest 2013
Remove Cannabis From The Controlled Substances Act

(Seattle, WA) 420leaks is a media project that sprung out of the board meetings of the Cannabis Action Coalition (CAC), a Seattle based activist group primarily focused on patient protection. The website 420leaks.org was officially launched in July of this year by its lead editor, medical cannabis patient and advocate John Novak. Contributing researchers to date are CAC Executive Director and founder Steve Sarich, Arthur West and John Worthington.

Its purpose is to act as both a government and industry watchdog group, exposing the public and news media to a new approach to the drug war: restrictive zoning/licensing that favors corporations over people, unscientific DUID laws that guarantee more convictions of non-impaired drivers and the use of federal contracts to get around state cannabis laws.

Our researchers have obtained the information primarily through Public Records Requests to state agencies and officials along with exhaustive daily monitoring of all the various state bills, local ordinances and news that will have an effect on patients and their providers.

One might think the passage of I-502 would have been a benefit for patients. In many ways it has. There is an increased awareness of the medical value because many people are no longer afraid to speak out. Some jurisdictions also dropped pending criminal charges. Other states and even countries are beginning to have debates and passing new laws.

Unfortunately, these policies have resulted in the reduction of rights and access for patients that use cannabis for medical purposes in many areas of the state. Allowing home grows and collective gardening under state law is a necessary foundation for ensuring safe access, reduced prices and driving out the black market from our neighborhoods.

Over 50 cities and counties have declared “emergencies” and adopted moratoriums or emergency interim zoning on medical cannabis gardens due to the perceived impacts of recreational cannabis under I-502.

420leaks has released documents that prove the state and federal government officials, along with corporate interests, have been complicit in an ongoing effort to end the medical cannabis laws and it’s emerging market in Washington State as we know it. This is done primarily through HIDTA (High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area) and other Federal police grant programs with cities, counties and states. These grant contracts for federal programs are not enforceable under Federal Law, however, they are the primary weapon used by local jurisdictions to undermine state cannabis laws.

This week, the Washington State Liquor Control Board was forced by public testimony, legal actions and internet exposure by 420leaks and the Cannabis Action Coalition to address these critical issues by doing a state required Environmental Impact Study. While this could delay licensing of producers, processors and retailers for months, if not years, it will force government to sit down with itself and come up with answers to these and other concerns before more good people are raided and end up with prison sentences for growing as is happening with medical cannabis. And that includes getting a direct answer from the federal government on what their responses will be once production and sales begin for the recreational market.

In the theme of this year’s Seattle Hempfest “No Federal Schedule” August 16-18th, 420leaks will work to help remove cannabis from both the Federal Controlled Substances Act, along with it’s removal in the State Controlled Substances Act.

Doing so will allow the federal and state conflicts to be resolved and allow for a more prosperous local, national and world economy. Protecting Industrial, Medical, Horticultural, Scientific, and responsible Social uses of cannabis for everyone, regardless of economic or racial background is vital to our children’s future. It also ensures protection for those suffering from serious health conditions.

420leaks John Novak at Seattle Hempfest 2013:

FRIDAY, AUGUST 16th – MCWILLIAMS STAGE @ 4:45pm

SATURDAY, AUGUST 17th – MAIN STAGE @ 11:40am

SATURDAY, AUGUST 17th – HEMPOSIUM PANEL: @ 3:00 – 3:40pm (Activism How-To: You Can Make a Difference, with Robert Platshorn, Melissa Hysom, Sam Chapman, Michael Krawitz, John Novak)

SEATTLE HEMPFEST:
http://www.hempfest.org/

Learn how you can help 420leaks.org by visiting our website and joining our Facebook page.
https://www.facebook.com/420leaks

Files backed up at
http://www.scribd.com/420leaks

Cannabis Action Coalition on Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Cannabis-Action-Coalition/492081144145895

New Public Records Documents on the WSLCB / I-502

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TONS of new documents from a Public Records Request on the Washington State Liquor Control Board’s implementation of I-502. Lots of gems in this new batch of files, including public comments…

Dig in…

http://www.scribd.com/420leaks

 

 

 

 

WSLCB Sued Over “Determination of Non-Significance” Issued for State I-502 Rules

420leaks Detective

Cannabis Action Coalition board member Arthur West’s lawsuit and complaint against the Washington State Liquor Control Board.

It seems the WSLCB has tried to cut corners by claiming implementing I-502 rules will not result in any significant environmental impact to the state. However, over 50 cities and some counties have been claiming otherwise in their moratoriums.

View the documents here:

 

Exhibits DNS 1

 

 

WSLCB I-502 State Environmental Impact Records – No Redactions Required

Results of a SEPA request by Arthur West by 420leaks

The Cannabis Action Coalition sleuths continue to file public records requests with the Washington State Liquor Control Board (WSLCB) to uncover what they’re doing behind closed doors.

While some of the BOTEC studies are up on the LBC website, our most recent records search has uncovered the unpublished BOTEC studies that the WSLCB doesn’t want you to see…and they’re very interesting!

Read ALL these studies and find out what’s going on behind the WSLCB’s veil of secrecy.

View the BOTEC Analysis Environmental impact reports and more uncovered by Arthur’s public records request in this document:

13 07 006 SEPA _Redacted by 420leaks