DEA RAIDS MEDICAL POT FACILITY
ROSEVILLE (AP) - Federal agents raided a medical marijuana operation and
seized hundreds of plants at the owner's nearby garden.
The Drug Enforcement Agency served search warrants Friday at Richard
Marino's home and business, Capitol Compassionate Care, which opened in
January. No arrests were made.
"We will collect all the evidence and present the case to the U.S.
attorney's office," said Gordon Taylor, agent-in-charge of the DEA's
Alan Archuleta, a shift manager, said agents stormed in at 9:30 a.m., guns
drawn, and yelling for everyone inside to get on the ground. "I thought we
were being robbed until I saw the badge. For a split second, it was very
Marino later spoke to The Sacramento Bee by phone from an undisclosed
location, the newspaper reported Saturday.
"I thought I was doing everything above board," he said. "I still think I'm
doing everything above board."
The conflict between state and federal law regarding medical marijuana
deepened recently after two rulings by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of
Appeals held that federal authorities do not have the power to go after
noncommercial medical marijuana operations confined within the state. The
U.S. Department of Justice is appealing the cases to the U.S. Supreme Court.
While Marino is breaking federal law, which holds that possessing and
cultivating marijuana is illegal, he is not breaking state law. California
voters in 1996 passed Proposition 215, which allows qualified patients to
use medical marijuana.