LOS ANGELES (AP) – Federal prosecutors are cracking down on medical marijuana dispensaries in Los Angeles, which has struggled to regulate the clinics and recently was met with a referendum aimed at overturning a citywide ban.
Prosecutors filed three lawsuits Tuesday against properties that house pot shops. They also sent 68 warning letters to other clinics, ordering them to close or face possible criminal charges.
Medical marijuana advocates have gathered enough signatures for a ballot measure that could stop the closure of dispensaries via an ordinance approved by the City Council.
California’s four U.S. attorneys have spent nearly a year curbing collectives they say are running afoul of the law. Proponents argue the dispensaries are protected by California law that allows medicinal use of marijuana with a doctor’s recommendation.