Sometimes the hardest part of closing down illegal medicinal marijuana storefronts is finding them. For cities, particularly in San Bernardino County, police rely on every resource available to locate new shops and then force them to close.

But the task is challenging as statewide ambiguity in dispensary restrictions provides cover for cooperative operators. Unscrupulous operators will misrepresent their business to landlords and even city officials. Some may file for business licenses and say they are in horticulture. Others may forgo licenses altogether. And in cities where dispensaries are banned, they may simply tell their landlords that that ban doesn’t exist or has been recently overturned.

When cities learn of the dispensaries – usually from informants or citizens’ complaints – they will send an investigator to verify the complaint. They then ask the Courts for a warrant to search the premises, and in turn levy fines of up to $1,000 per day.

At that point, the collective normally ceases to operate at that location and moves elsewhere, either in town or to a city with less restrictive laws.

Read the full story at the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin.