DENVER (AP) – Federal agents were dispatched to ensure that 23 Colorado medical marijuana dispensaries complied with a Monday deadline to close because they are located too close to schools, the U.S. attorney’s office in Denver said.
U.S. attorney’s spokesman Jeff Dorschner said no problems were reported.
U.S. Attorney John Walsh had given the dispensaries 45 days to move or to close because they were located within 1,000 feet of schools.
Citing what he called an ongoing investigation, Dorschner said he could not say how many dispensaries have already closed or changed location. The Medical Marijuana Industry Group, an industry association, said all affected dispensaries complied with the notice.
Walsh sent letters to the dispensaries and their landlords Jan. 12 telling them they risked losing their assets and property. Dorschner said Walsh planned to issue more warnings to additional dispensaries “sooner rather than later.”
U.S. attorneys in states with medical marijuana laws have been reminding state officials that marijuana still is illegal under federal law. Last fall, federal authorities began cracking down on state-sanctioned medical marijuana businesses in California, Washington and Montana.
Unlike those states, Colorado officials and medical marijuana advocates had hoped that clearly defined state regulations would prevent such a crackdown. Colorado has about 700 medical marijuana dispensaries.
- By Rema Rahman, Associated Press
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