Obama Administration Repeals Drug Seizure Laws--Oh Really?

Categories: Bong Blotter

Anaheim's Kush Expo: What war on drugs?
On Jan. 16, just a day after the Weekly published a story on the City of Anaheim's failed attempt to use federal asset forfeiture law to seize a privately-owned building over a $37 pot sale, the >Washington Post reported that the feds were repealing key aspects of that law.

"[Attorney General Eric] Holder limits seized-asset sharing process that split billions with local, state police," the article stated. "Holder's action represents the most sweeping check on police power to confiscate personal property since the seizures began three decades ago as part of the war on drugs," the article claimed, adding that in the past six years, "thousands of local and state police agencies have made more than 55,000 seizures of cash and property worth $3 billion." Those seizures fell under an asset forfeiture program administered by Holder's Justice Department known as "Equitable Sharing."

So does Holder's announcement really spell the end of the federal government's right to seize drug-tied private property without winning a conviction or even filing charges against a suspect?

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Anaheim Officials Welcome the Kush Expo--While Suing Small Pot Shops and Their Landlords

Jeff Drew/OC Weekly

Every summer for the past five years, the Anaheim Convention Center, a swirly tower of concrete and blue-tinted glass, transforms itself into a mecca of marijuana. This magical event, the world's largest of its kind, lasts exactly two days and happens just across the street from the Disneyland Resort. It's called the Kush Expo.

On display inside the four-hall, football field-sized facility are dozens of vendors hawking products ranging from the latest vaporizers to bongs, soil nutrients and hydroponic growing equipment. There's the annual Kush Cup Awards, offering recognition for best indica, sativa and hybrid strains; oil; wax; hash; edible chocolate; vape pen; and tube bong--to name but a few categories. Then there's the Hot Kush Girl Contest, in which bikini-clad lasses with green numbers spray-painted on their thighs compete for up to $500 and a gift bag.

If all the bare flesh and bong raffles aren't enough to keep you entertained, you can step inside an open-air white tent out back, where folks with a doctor's recommendation for medical marijuana can smoke pot while guarded by Anaheim police officers. Doctors are on-site and available to help out the poor souls who forgot their cards. For a small fee, they can figure out what ails you, and presto change-o, you're a certified medicinal-marijuana patient.

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Dear Santa: Please Get My Congressman to Vote for Reclassifying Marijuana

Categories: Bong Blotter

Photo by Jorge Negreros/OC Weekly
Breakfast of champions
All Jacqueline Patterson wants for Christmas is for you to sign her petition aimed at getting the federal government to finally reclassify marijuana, which is currently a Schedule 1 drug that the Drug Enforcement Agency considers of no medical value and as dangerous as heroin.

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Weekender Updater: John Wayne Airport Hood Ornament; Cartel Guns; Pot Attorney Guilty

Courtesy of John Wayne Airport
Cops on bikes beware!
Read on for the sentence in the case where a Newport Beach woman tried to run over a John Wayne Airport bicycle officer, the planned destination for a couple pulled over in Newps with a cache of weapons and ammo, and the plea of the lawyer for a pot dispensary kingpin who had shops in Orange and Los Angeles counties.

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Medical Marijuanist "Dr. J" Wijegunaratne Told to Stop Practicing Due to Sexual Assault Claim

An Anaheim Hills-based doctor who practices out of a medical marijuana clinic and goes by "Dr. J" (get it?) has been court-ordered to stop practicing medicine while he is out on bail for the alleged sexual assault of a female patient. But here's the deal with Dr. Sri Jayantha Wijegunaratne: He's already out on a bail in a separate case that accuses him of having defrauded Medicare by prescribing powered wheelchairs to patients who did not need them.

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Dana Rohrabacher, Lou Correa, Judge Jim Gray Among UCI Marijuana Symposium Speakers

Illustration by Jorge Negreros
A high fiber meal ... emphasis on the "high."

An all-day symposium at UC Irvine Thursday is not only dedicated to one of OC Weekly's favorite topics (marijuana legalization), but it includes ... um ... colorful characters who have filled our pages (print and otherwise) for years (Dana Rohrabacher, Lou Correa, Judge Jim Gray and Tom Umberg).

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Midway City Pot Shop Fined Day After Day

Categories: Bong Blotter

Dank Depot/Flickr
The controversial green

The owner of The Variety Co-op medical marijuana dispensary is being fined by the County on a near-daily basis. It's quickly adding up - when he spoke with the Weekly, the owner, who we'll call Fred, estimated the County fines he and his landladies have incurred at approximately $56,000.

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[UPDATED W/MUGSHOT] Hossein Nayeri Extradited To OC In Pot Shop Sexual Mutilation

Categories: Bong Blotter

Photo by flickr user Kit
A blow torch and bleach were used in the alleged torture.

Hossein Nayeri, one of three suspects charged in the gruesome torture and sexual mutilation of a Newport Beach medical marijuana dispensary owner, will be arraigned today at Orange County's Superior Courthouse. The last of the defendants to be charged, Nayeri fled to his native Iran, which has no extradition treaty with the United States, but authorities were able to lure him to the Czech Republic, where they arrested him.

He arrived in Orange County on Sept. 15 and faces charges of aggravated mayhem, torture and residential burglary. As the Weekly first reported last year, two other suspects have already been arrested in what sounds like a scene ripped straight out of Scarface or an episode of Breaking Bad.

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SanTana City Council Backpedals on Pot

Kent Kanouse/Flickr
A typical pot shop display case

Once more, SanTana's City Council brought up the recent whirlwind of medical marijuana clinics at the September 16th city council meeting. For the first time since the July 15th meeting, they even decided to have a discussion about it. Prior attempts to do so have been delayed due to absent council members.

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SanTana Pot Raid Arraignment Clogs Court

Ronnie Cote/OC Weekly
No Medicating happening at Civic Center...

Remember the itty-bitty pot raid that Santa Ana PD carried out on July 31st? September 2nd was the arraignment for some 123 total marijuana misdemeanor violations. And so far it seems only one out of this smorgasbord of arrestees plead guilty and swallowed the $500 fine. That's right folks. A large number of them waived their right to a speedy trial and are opting to fight the charges.

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