The Federal crackdown on Commercial Marijuana Operations in California has lead to the arrest of a man in Grass Valley. Drug Enforcement Agency Information officer Sarah Pullen says 33 year old James Stanley was taken into custody last Thursday in Grass Valley in connection with an indictment served on a commercial marijuana distribution operation in southern California.
“Agents from the DEA out of our offices in Northern California did arrest James Stanley. He was a fugitive out of a case charged here in Los Angeles and he was involved in an indictment involving a dispensary here in the Los Angeles area and he is alleged to be growing and supplying marijuana for that dispensary.”
The criminal case names six defendants linked to a now-defunct North Hollywood marijuana store called NoHo Caregivers. The drug trafficking organization – which sold marijuana at NoHo Caregivers, sold marijuana to other stores, and sent marijuana to affiliates in New York and Pennsylvania, and distributed approximately 600 to 700 pounds of marijuana per month, according to the indictment.
The defendants used encrypted BlackBerry devices, but investigators were able to intercept email communications that detailed the distribution of marijuana, as well as the payments for the drugs. That indictment details one email exchange between the two lead defendants in which they “discussed the amounts of marijuana they intended to distribute monthly over the coming year and estimated that they would each receive over $194,000 in profits per month.”
US Attorney Andre Birotte Jr. says While California law permits collective cultivation of marijuana in limited circumstances; it does not allow commercial distribution through the store front model seen across California.