Feds say local pot clinic raids are just beginning - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Feds say local pot clinic raids are just beginning

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KEARNY MESA (CBS 8) - For the fourth time in less than a week, the federal government has shut down another medical marijuana dispensary in San Diego County.

Tuesday's crackdown on Green Tree Solutions on Clairemont Mesa Boulevard comes on the heels of three other search warrants executed on similar pot dispensaries last Wednesday in Pacific Beach, North Park and near the Rolando area.

"Nobody should be surprised that we're out here doing these warrants," said Special Agent Amy Roderick of the DEA. "We gave everybody notice and we gave them time to get out."

Outside Green Tree Solutions, medical pot advocates blasted this move by the feds, saying it is denying essential medicine to sick patients. While Californians voted to legalize marijuana for medical purposes in 1996, it remains illegal on the federal level.

"Based on the Tenth Amendment, federal law should not supercede state law in issues of health and safety," said James Schmachtenberger of the Patient Care Association of California, which advocates for medical marijuana patients. "This is clearly an issue of health."

This recent crackdown is all part of a coordinated effort by the federal government. Last fall, the U.S. Attorney's office put these clinics, and the building owners housing them, on notice: informing them through letters they had 45 days to shut down.

"We are going to continue to do these.... We'll be doing them until all the dispensaries in San Diego County are shut down," Roderick said.

Also on Tuesday, the city of Poway took a definitive stand on the issue, voting unanimously to permanently ban all medical marijuana dispensaries within its city limits.

However, this ban does not affect medical marijuana users who are permitted under state law to grow or use marijuana for medical purposes.

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