U.S. Attorney John Walsh sent letters to 23 medical marijuana dispensaries in Colorado on Thursday, warning them that they faced legal repercussions if they did not close down within 45 days.
"This letter constitutes formal notification that a marijuana dispensary is operating on the above described property in violation of federal law," the letter states. "You are further advised that the real property is subject to forfeiture, and any money you receive, or have received, from the dispensary owner may also be subject to seizure and forfeiture."
The 23 dispensaries were specifically targeted because they were each within 1,000 feet of a school.
“When the voters of Colorado passed the limited medical marijuana amendment in 2000, they could not have anticipated that their vote would be used to justify large marijuana stores located within blocks of our schools,” Walsh said in a statement.
Coloradoans voted in 2000 to legalize the use of medical marijuana.
In early October, U.S. attorneys in California threatened to seize the properties of state-licensed marijuana dispensaries if they didn’t close up shop within 45 days. U.S. attorneys in California also threatened to target newspapers, radio stations and other media outlets that advertised for the dispensaries.
California lawmakers complained that the federal crackdown on medical marijuana dispensaries would cost the state millions of dollars in lost revenue.
Photo credit: Laurie Avocado