June 24, 2005

See-Dubya: Organized Crime behind SF "Medical" Marijuana (UPDATED)

Seems San Francisco's "medical" marijuana clubs (hey, if everyone puts "War on Drugs" in smartass quotes then I can do it too) were actually just illegal drug clearing houses and money-laundering schemes for the Asian mob. The DEA busted three of them and found they were also distributing, um, "medical" ecstasy.

I'm flabbergasted. Speechless, really. You mean to tell me that this wasn't just a virtuous, earnest effort to reach out to troubled, anguished souls?

"An affidavit unsealed Thursday said that one of the suspects, Enrique Chan, 26, described in detail how the clubs were used as "a backbone" for illegal sales. The affidavit said Mr. Chan estimated that only half of the people who bought medical marijuana were really sick.

"You'll get busted, but you remember, you got to beat the prosecution in court," Mr. Chan told an undercover agent, according to the affidavit. "So if it comes down to a battle in court, what are you gonna do? You're going to bring patients in court, like really sick patients with cancer, have them sit on the stand for you. And no jury is gonna try, is gonna convict you."

In other words, organized crime is cynically going to hide behind cancer patients to protect its business. Not only was half of the marijuana used in the stores not for sick people, but the warehouses that grew the stores' ganja grew far more than the stores even needed:

"One warehouse in Oakland that federal agents raided earlier this month was capable of growing $3 million worth of marijuana annually, investigators said.

The marijuana ostensibly was for cannabis clubs, but the amount being grown was far more than needed to supply the dispensaries, authorities said.

I am just shocked and appalled at this blatant disruption of these kindly hippie/ Tong bagmen's shiny, happy lifestyles. In fact I'm so shocked and appalled that I'm going to go have me a big glass of "medical" bourbon and smoke a "therapeutic" Partagas.

UPDATE: Now, with new Blockquotes (tm) Technology! Here's another thing to keep in mind. There's no suggestion here of how many of these people actually suffer from, say, Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma and are unresponsive to other treatments like marinol, which I think are the real hard cases here. In fact, this AP account suggests some of the ailments may be a smidge less horrific:

"I'm scared," said Kathleen Prevost, who said she uses marijuana to control her post-traumatic stress disorder. "All I want to do is have access to my medicine."

Now if you'll excuse me, my ADHD is acting up, and I need some "Medical Cocaine". Oh, and that reminds me: I wrote a little about medical methamphetamine and the Commerce Clause right after the Raich decision.

By See-Dubya at 04:12 AM | Comments |