NYPD Raids Unlicensed Cannabis Dispensaries in Manhattan

NYPD Raids Unlicensed Cannabis Dispensaries in Manhattan: Latest News

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In a recent enforcement action, the New York Department () conducted raids on two cannabis dispensaries located in . The Chelsea and Lower East Side locations of the Empire Cannabis Club were targeted, following an ongoing effort to curb marijuana stores across the .

Raid Confirmed

Steve Zissou, a lawyer representing the Empire Cannabis Club, confirmed that the NYPD carried out the enforcement action. The raid is part of a broader initiated by the State Office of Cannabis Management and the Department of Taxation and Finance, which have been inspecting various storefronts across New York, including locations in New York City, Ithaca, and Binghamton.

Statewide Crackdown

Governor Kathy Hochul announced that the recent inspections resulted in violation notices issued to 31 out of 33 businesses targeted. The agencies seized approximately 1,000 pounds of illicit cannabis, with an estimated value of $11 million. This crackdown highlights the state’s commitment to address the proliferation of unlicensed dispensaries and enforce regulations.

Delayed Licensing System

New York legalized use in 2021, allowing individuals to possess or gift up to three ounces of cannabis. However, the state has faced in establishing a licensing system for dispensaries, leading to the rise of unlicensed stores throughout the city. Currently, only 19 dispensaries hold valid licenses to operate in New York.

Legislative Measures

The State Senate recently passed a bill aimed at increasing fines for illegal cannabis . However, the measure did not pass in the Assembly, leaving the issue of unlicensed dispensaries unresolved.


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