Sweet Leaf, one of Colorado’s most prominent cannabis businesses has been shut down in a Denver police raid conducted on Thursday.
In what is being a called a culmination of a year-long investigation into illegal distribution of marijuana, the Denver Police Department and several partnering agencies executed search and arrest warrants at eight Denver-area Sweet Leaf Marijuana Center locations. 12 people were also arrested.
According to the Excise and Licenses communication director Daniel Rowland, 26 of Sweet Leaf’s licenses were suspended. These licenses were operating at retail and medical marijuana stores, retail and medical marijuana cultivation sites and one medical marijuana product manufacturing operation.
The suspension mandate reads, “reasonable grounds and probable cause exists to believe that respondents have engaged in deliberate and willful violations of state and local laws or regulations, and/or that the public health, safety, and welfare requires emergency action.”
The 12 suspects arrested in the operation are being held for illegal distribution of marijuana. The suspects’ names, booking photos, and arrest documents are not currently available for release as the operation and booking process are still underway.
Sweet Leaf operates 10 stores in the Denver area. It’s not yet clear how much of its operation has been affected by the raids.
Sweet Leaf first opened up shop in 2009 and has since become one of Colorado’s biggest sources for recreational and medical marijuana.
A representative from Sweet Leaf issues this statement to Westword on Thursday:
“This morning, Sweet Leaf was surprised to receive notification from the Department of Excise and License suspending all of our city licenses in the City and County of Denver. It is unclear at this point exactly what actions, if any, Sweet Leaf took to cause the city to issue this order. Sweet Leaf is cooperating with the authorities to resolve this issue and hopes to have all of their stores back in operation as soon as possible.”
It has been made clear that no other dispensaries were targeted in the Denver police raid and that this incident is Colorado-specific.