Legalizing Marijuana Has Created a Black Market Plaguing Riverside County

Legalizing Marijuana Has Created a Black Market Plaguing Riverside County

There is a new sheriff in Riverside County, and he is attacking the illegal marijuana cultivation that’s plaguing his community in Southern California. Sheriff Chad Bianco was elected in November 2018, and has taken on the growing black market with a vengeance.

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Where's the pot? California tracking system unlikely to know

Where's the pot? California tracking system unlikely to know

When California voters broadly legalized marijuana, they were promised that a vast computer platform would closely monitor products moving through the new market. But 16 months after sales kicked in, the system known as track-and-trace isn’t doing much of either.    As of last month, just nine retail outlets were entering data into the network established under an estimated $60 million state contract, even though 627 shops are licensed to sell pot in California. The rate of participation is similarly slim for other sectors in the emerging industry.

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‘Getting Worse, Not Better’: Illegal Pot Market Booming in California Despite Legalization

‘Getting Worse, Not Better’: Illegal Pot Market Booming in California Despite Legalization

It’s been a little more than a year since California legalized marijuana — the largest such experiment in the United States — but law enforcement officials say the unlicensed, illegal market is still thriving and in some areas has even expanded.

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Legal? Illegal? Some players still work both sides of state marijuana industry

Legal? Illegal? Some players still work both sides of state marijuana industry

During the 21 years that California’s multibillion-dollar unregulated medical marijuana market thrived, cannabis operators learned to create elaborate schemes to disguise their connections to unlicensed shops. And now that some operators are also tied to valuable licensed businesses, Montes said, double dippers have become even more careful about burying their identities.

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I spent a night in the NJ marijuana black market. The illegal weed business is booming.

I spent a night in the NJ marijuana black market. The illegal weed business is booming.

While legislators debate the details of NJ marijuana legalization, the black market is bigger than ever. we spent a night at a marijuana "pop-up" and saw chocolate bars and brownies, oils and vape cartridges and huge jars of illegal weed.

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Black market marijuana busts nearly quadruple under recreational legalization

Black market marijuana busts nearly quadruple under recreational legalization

Four years after legal recreational marijuana went on sale in Colorado, Gov. John Hickenlooper says the black market for marijuana in the state is shrinking and predicted that it "will be largely gone" in a few years.

But new statistics show that arrests for the production of black market pot increased by 380 percent in the 2014-16 time frame, and Colorado law enforcement agencies say they are battling a boom in illegal marijuana cultivation by sometimes violent groups of criminals who rake in millions of dollars by exporting what they grow.

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Colorado politicians ignore major pot problems

Colorado politicians ignore major pot problems

If Hickenlooper and Gardner cared to lead on this issue, they would tell the world about the rate of pot-involved traffic fatalities that began soaring in their state in direct correlation with the emergence of legal recreational pot and Big Marijuana. They would talk about Colorado's status as a national leader in the growth of homelessness, which all major homeless shelter operators attribute to commercialized, recreational pot.

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Mexican drug cartels may use legal marijuana to take over Northern California pot trade.

  Mexican drug cartels may use legal marijuana to take over Northern California pot trade.

Part of the legalization argument is that regulating and taxing marijuana could give California enforcement agencies the funds they need to eradicate illegal farms. But Gabriel thinks it will take years before enforcement can put a dent in the illegal grows that he estimates pop up by the hundreds every year. He points to Humboldt County, about five hours northwest of Calaveras, where authorities are combing through 2,300 applications for growers who want to start selling in California’s recreational market. But there are also an estimated 12,700 illegal farms in the county.

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Toxic waste from U.S. pot farms alarms experts

Toxic waste from U.S. pot farms alarms experts

WEAVERVILLE, Calif. (Reuters) - Pollution from illegal marijuana farms deep in California's national forests is far worse than previously thought, and has turned thousands of acres into waste dumps so toxic that simply touching plants has landed law enforcement officers in the hospital.

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Legalized marijuana turns Colorado resort town into homeless magnet

Legalized marijuana turns Colorado resort town into homeless magnet

Caleb Preston, a store manager in a gift shop and a former “street entertainer,” said the homeless and panhandling issue in Durango has gotten out of hand since the state legalized marijuana.

“Just this year there has been a major influx of people between 20 to 30 who are just hanging out on the streets,” Preston said. “The problem is while many are pretty mellow, there are many more who are violent.”

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In Colorado, It's Still The Wild West For Home-Grown Marijuana

In Colorado, It's Still The Wild West For Home-Grown Marijuana

Since 2014, when Colorado’s legal, recreational marijuana sales began, Rist Canyon residents say they’ve seen the arrival of a handful of new neighbors. These newcomers buy a plot of land, and rather than build a house and move in, they put up greenhouses or start planting marijuana right in the ground.  

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Prop 64 Wins - Public Health, Safety and California Kids Lose

Prop 64 Wins - Public Health, Safety and California Kids Lose

“This is the worst possible message we could send to our citizens, children and other states,” warns Scott Chipman, Southern California Chair of CALM. “For at least a generation California like Colorado will be burdening their communities and children with the scourge that is marijuana. The negative impacts of legalization and commercialization will be regular headlines in the news and in the lives of Californians.” 

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5 Former DEA Administrators urge Governor Brown to Oppose Prop 64

5 Former DEA Administrators urge Governor Brown to Oppose Prop 64

As former heads of the Drug Enforcement Administration, we write to ask you, the State’s highest level and most visible political leader, to take a position on Proposition 64 before the election next Tuesday. For the reasons set out below, we urge you to oppose Prop 64. Your voice, Governor, is critical.

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Californians Call on Governor Brown To take An Oppose Position on Prop 64

Californians Call on Governor Brown To take An Oppose Position on Prop 64

It is curious that Governor Brown said while being interviewed by “Meet the Press,” March 2, 2014, “The problem with anything, a certain amount is OK.  But there is a tendency to go to extremes, and all of a sudden, if there is advertising and legitimacy, how many people can get stoned and still have a great State.”  Carla Lowe, Founder, Co-chair, Citizens Against Legalizing Marijuana (CALM)said, “He then turned his back on Californians 4 days later and accepted over $108,000 from Sean Parker and his wife, both financial backers of Prop 64.  We believe he further put California in jeopardy, maybe forever, by allowing it to become the world’s largest producer of marijuana by not demanding enforcement of federal law.

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Why Legalizing Marijuana Would Be a Big Mistake

Why Legalizing Marijuana Would Be a Big Mistake

The marijuana of today comes in numerous forms; smoked, vaporized, butters, waxes, oils, and edibles.  What they all have in common is their THC potency (THC is the psychoactive, intoxicating and addictive cannabinoid in marijuana)  which is 10-40x greater than the marijuana of the 1960’s.  Today’s marijuana has been genetically engineered to maximize THC and minimize CBD (the non-psychoactive, non-intoxicating, non-addictive; cannabinoid with potentially therapeutic value).   

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The pro-pot crowd claims that legalization will eliminate the black market. This is a lie.

The pro-pot crowd claims that legalization will eliminate the black market. This is a lie.

The legalization of marijuana allows the pot industry to aggressively advertise and market a crude street drug as well as hundreds of additional products containing extremely high levels of THC. The marketing of these products along with easy access to unlimited supplies expands the customer base for marijuana and normalizes its use. As a result, the pot industry is free to openly advertise, manufacture, process, transport, and distribute massive quantities of drugs. This gives other "unlicensed" drug dealers the ability to blend in - to literally "hide in plain sight."

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