Pubdate: Thu, 22 Sep 2016
Source: Hamilton Spectator (CN ON)
Copyright: 2016 The Hamilton Spectator
Author: Teviah Moro
Page: A8


Hamilton police have raided another medical marijuana dispensary and
seized about $75,000 worth of merchandise.

Officers from the vice and drug unit executed a search warrant on
MMJ-Canada's Urban Dispensary at 118 George St., in Hess Village, on

The raid yielded marijuana and cannabis resin, shatter (cannabis
extract), THC-infused syrup, soft drinks and edibles.

A 35-year-old Hamilton man, whom police "believe" was the operator of
the business, is charged with possession of marijuana for the purpose
of trafficking and possession of cannabis resin for the purpose of

He's expected to appear in court Nov. 2.

A customer of the dispensary watched as police raided the business.
Michael A. Quigg said he walked to the MMJ Dispensary, which is on the
western edge of Hess Village by Queen Street South, after hearing
police were on scene.

Employees there told him it was being raided as officers milled around
the dispensary, Quigg said.

"I definitely feel it's going to be a huge letdown for the

Quigg shot photographs showing police carrying out merchandise from
the well-kept, red-brick storefront.

Calls placed to the George Street dispensary reached a phone with a
full voice mail box. Employees contacted at MMJ Canada stores in
Vancouver and Toronto declined to comment.

The business says on its website that the proprietors "guarantee a
completely stress-free and positively enlightening

The George Street store advertises that it provides "top-shelf medical
marijuana, concentrates and edibles in a safe, clean and upscale

"The federal government has committed to making changes to the laws
and regulations in relation to marijuana; however, until such changes
are proclaimed law, the present provisions of the Controlled Drugs and
Substances Act in relation to the possession and sale of marijuana
remain in force," police said in a statement on Wednesday.

Hamilton police have raided at least two other medical marijuana
merchants this year, including Bright Moments on King Street East and
Escarpment Wellness on Main Street East in June.

Operators were charged with possession for the purposes of

Those two operations yielded an estimated $175,000 in marijuana and
"edibles," such as drug-infused sodas, cookies and peanut butter.

Selling medical marijuana from storefronts is illegal, but details on
the federal government's effort to legalize and regulate pot use are
expected next year.

MMJ in Hamilton says on its site it believes "deeply in the power of
Cannabis and it is our mission to share this belief ... We empower
patients with the quality of life they deserve."

Quigg says he understands the legal aspects of the issue, but says the
dispensary staff is professional.

"It's such a peaceful environment. They do such a great job in serving
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