Last year, Colorado legalized limited recreational use of marijuana. However, retail marijuana shops won't be allowed until Jan. 1, 2014. At the end of last month, raids of marijuana warehouses, homes and a Denver dispensary demonstrated how risky the business of marijuana might be as federal law still prohibits the sale of the drug.
It isn't clear what these raids signal to the future of marijuana sales in Colorado, but people who are arrested for marijuana-related allegations should understand their rights when talking with authorities. Sometimes investigators will ask questions during or immediately following an arrest. Any information provided to authorities could be used against a person in court.
The federal government has said that it would ignore recreational sales of marijuana in states that legalize it, as long as it met certain regulations, such as keeping it away from children. According to a report on the raids, federal agents from the Drug Enforcement Agency and the Internal Revenue Service had 10 target subjects in the raids. No one was arrested in the raids, and it is unclear if any arrests would be made or if any charges would be filed.
Raids by federal officials should be taken seriously, and those who might be the target of federal investigations might be wise to speak with a Denver area criminal defense attorney. They can help a person understand their rights and be with them when being questioned by authorities. This can help a person prevent making incriminating statements that might harm their reputation and their business.
Source: Associated Press, "Colorado Pot Raids Show Industry Still Risky," Kristen Wyatt, Nov. 22, 2013