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NFL player arrested for allegedly possessing 157 pounds of marijuana in a rental car

Published: Feb 20, 2020, 9:46 am • Updated: Feb 20, 2020, 9:48 am By Cnn.com Wire Service By Madeline Holcombe | CNN Cleveland Browns player Gregory Robinson was arrested after US Border Patrol agents found 157 pounds of marijuana in a car, officials said. Robinson, 27, and Jaquan Bray, 26, were charged in a federal complaint with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute marijuana and possession intent to distribute, the US Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Texas said in a news release. If convicted, they could face up to 20 years in federal prison. Read the rest of this story on MercuryNews.com.

Feds bust suspected Pittsburg/Atlanta pot trafficking ring; alleged money launderer arrested in Bay Area

OAKLAND — A man suspected of conspiring with others to ship marijuana from Pittsburg to Atlanta, Georgia, was arrested in the Bay Area last week on an arrest warrant for money laundering charges, court records show. Alhaji Jewru Touray was arrested in connection with a federal conspiracy and money laundering case based in Georgia. The complaint against Touray says that a confidential federal informant confessed to helping Touray vacuum-seal bags of marijuana in a home on Springhill Drive in Pittsburg to prepare them for shipment to Atlanta. During the course of the two-year investigation, authorities seized more than to $400,000 in cash, according to court records. Read the rest of this story on MercuryNews.com.

Police found more than 1,400 marijuana plants inside a building in Northern California

Published: Feb 17, 2020, 8:10 am • Updated: Feb 17, 2020, 8:12 am By Cnn.com Wire Service By Nicole Chavez | CNN A man was arrested in West Point, California, after authorities discovered 440 pounds of illegal marijuana inside a building, the Calaveras County Sheriff’s Office said. More than 1,400 marijuana plants were seized Thursday when deputies served a search warrant and found that a large shop building adjacent to a home had been turned into a grow house, the sheriff’s office said. Read the rest of this story on MercuryNews.com.

Making cannabis normal at Oakland’s NUG

Published: Feb 16, 2020, 6:08 am • Updated: Feb 16, 2020, 6:10 am By Rex Crum It takes a lot of courage to start your own business. Taking an idea from concept to reality, and dealing with everything from finding a location for the business, keeping up with inventory, learning about distribution and making payroll can test the mettle of the most-confident entrepreneur. Now, consider doing all of that in a nascent industry that is dealing with all kinds of new governmental regulations, trying to shed a public stigma and is, well, known for the aroma of a certain type of plant. Read the rest of this story on MercuryNews.com.

Like sipping kombucha? Try a cannabis-infused variety next

SAN LEANDRO — Fans of House Kombucha, a locally-produced tea that’s sold at cafes, grocery outlets and a Berkeley taproom, will have another flavor to choose from by summer when they imbibe, one that’s exotic in its own way. The business, launched in 2009 at a farmers market in San Francisco, plans to manufacture cannabis-infused beverages in a warehouse at  2994 Teagarden St., which it has operated out of the past six years. The drinks will be concocted eight employees within a a 750-square-foot section of the building under the name “Fantasy Elixirs and Medicinals.” Read the rest of this story on MercuryNews.com.

State cannabis regulations remain complex, but growers steadily becoming compliant

Save for a few adjustments in state laws, a cannabis permitting workshop in Fortuna on Wednesday carried out in exactly the same way as another workshop 18 months prior — each serving as an effective how-to on becoming legally compliant with California’s pot regulations. But for state officials walking attendees through the ins and outs of state policies, there’s one evident distinction between past and present workshops: whereas an August 2018 event packed the River Lodge with 100 growers and consultants, only about 15 people showed up to Wednesday’s occasion. Janice Mackey, a public information manager for the state Department of Fish and Wildlife, said the decline in attendance signals good news that more and more cannabis growers are coming into compliance with California’s legal syste...

California marijuana regulations remain complex, but growers steadily becoming compliant

FORTUNA– Save for a few adjustments in state laws, a cannabis permitting workshop in Fortuna on Wednesday carried out in exactly the same way as another workshop 18 months prior — each serving as an effective how-to on becoming legally compliant with California’s pot regulations. But for state officials walking attendees through the ins and outs of state policies, there’s one evident distinction between past and present workshops: whereas an August 2018 event packed the River Lodge with 100 growers and consultants, only about 15 people showed up to Wednesday’s occasion. Janice Mackey, a public information manager for the state Department of Fish and Wildlife, said the decline in attendance signals good news that more and more cannabis growers are coming into compliance with California’s le...

Movement to decriminalize ‘magic mushrooms’ gains steam

SANTA CRUZ —  At first glance, it looked like an ordinary gardening workshop. On a table at the front of the room sat soil additives, humidity detectors and an oyster mushroom the size of a grapefruit. “This is a younger shiitake mycelium,” said instructor Will Goss, passing around a bag of wood chips covered in thin white filaments. He then described how to grow the rootlike mycelium from spores and coax it into producing mushrooms. All of the people who attended the workshop were provided with their own grow kits, but they were told they needed to find their own spores. That’s because they weren’t learning how to grow shiitakes. They were finding out how to cultivate psychedelic mushrooms —  illegal to possess under state and federal laws. Read the rest of this story on MercuryNews.com.

Man sentenced for bribing 2 New Jersey postal workers to deliver packages of marijuana shipped from California

Published: Feb 11, 2020, 11:36 am • Updated: Feb 11, 2020, 11:37 am By Associated Press NEWARK, N.J. — A New Jersey drug dealer who bribed postal workers to bring him marijuana parcels he had shipped in from California has been sentenced to two years in prison. Glenn Blackstone, 50, of Newark will also have to serve five years of supervised release once he’s freed from prison under the sentence imposed Monday. He had pleaded guilty in April 2018 to giving bribes and conspiracy to distribute marijuana. Related Articles Read the rest of this story on MercuryNews.com.

Whoopi Goldberg’s California cannabis company has shut down

Published: Feb 5, 2020, 7:52 am • Updated: Feb 5, 2020, 7:54 am By Cnn.com Wire Service By Alicia Wallace | CNN Business Whoopi & Maya, the medical cannabis company co-founded by Whoopi Goldberg, is closing up shop, according to a statement posted on its website. In an interview with CNN Business, Rick Cusick, a Whoopi & Maya board member who helped found the company with Goldberg and Om Edibles founder Maya Elisabeth, said he received word Friday from Goldberg that she planned to step away from the brand. Read the rest of this story on MercuryNews.com.

Editorial: Roll back California pot taxes to save legal market

Published: Feb 3, 2020, 1:26 pm • Updated: Feb 3, 2020, 1:27 pm By Mercury News & East Bay Times Editorial Boards California’s legal marijuana industry has been a bust, falling far short of the sales projected when voters legalized it in 2016. With the approval of Proposition 64, Californians made clear that they wanted to end the farce of criminalizing marijuana-related offenses, and they wanted to allow a legal market for recreational marijuana to operate. Unfortunately, high taxes, a slow-moving permitting process and local government resistance has stifled the ability of the legal market to better get off the ground.

Irvine’s Weedmaps delists 2,700 rogue marijuana stores, but bad actors find loopholes

Facing massive fines from state regulators, Irvine-based Weedmaps has taken major strides toward fulfilling its pledge to drop ads for illicit cannabis shops from its online directory, cutting about 2,700 rogue stores from its site since the start of this year. The company’s long-awaited move to follow state law is drawing praise from legal cannabis operators. Some licensed stores have seen an uptick in business since Jan. 1, a trend they attribute to Weedmaps making it more difficult for potential customers to find unlicensed competitors. But Weedmaps’ new filtering system hasn’t prevented all unlicensed operators from advertising on the site, and many in the regulated market are hoping for even more diligent screening by the prominent, industry-driving platform. Read the rest of this sto...