On April 3, 2014, Irvin Rosenfeld and Bryan McLaren were elected to be Directors of Zoned Properties, Inc., a lessor of land, facilities and equipment to the medical marijuana industry. On April 25, 2014, ZPI filed a Change of Officer/Director form with the Arizona Corporation Commission to add Irvin Rosenfeld and Bryan McLaren as directors. On April 28, 2014, ZPI filed a Change of Officer/Director form that notified the ACC that Rosenfeld and McLaren ceased to be directors of the corporation. The sole director listed on the ACC’s website as of April 28, 2014, was Leonard C. Salgado. Rosenfeld and McLaren were directors for 25 days.
ABC News: “The Colorado Symphony Orchestra said Tuesday it will play a series of “cannabis-friendly” fundraising concerts sponsored by the state’s burgeoning pot industry. The state’s only full-time professional orchestra hopes the unusual shows dubbed ‘Classically Cannabis: The High Note Series’ will boost its audience as it struggles with dwindling attendance and shrinking budgets.”
havasunews.com: “With medical marijuana legal in Arizona, emergency rooms for pets are seeing more and more dogs that have eaten marijuana in brownies, cookies, oils and other forms. “People come in and their dogs are lethargic, with their eyes rolling in the back of their heads, or they’re unconscious,” said Dr. Billy Griswold with Emergency Animal Clinic, which has five Valley locations. Griswold said that over the past few years he has treated at least 24 dogs each month that have eaten marijuana.”
CBS Denver: “The State of Colorado will start phasing in mandatory lab testing of marijuana edible products on May 1. Currently, marijuana product testing of any kind has been performed strictly on a voluntary basis. As Colorado ramps up its lab testing, CBS4 requested permission to perform independent lab tests of edible products but was forbidden by the Marijuana Enforcement Division. . . . Steep Hill Halent Labs tested 13 marijuana edible products for potency. Lab director Joseph Evans said only three of the 13 products tested close to the potency promised on the packaging.”
Eastern Arizona Courier: “Medical marijuana cardholders who stopped by the Holistic Wellness Center in Clifton to purchase an allotment of cannabis Thursday came across a padlocked door and a handwritten sign indicating the business was temporarily closed. The closure wasn’t due to state or federal law enforcement officials, however, but was instituted as a casualty of a battle for ownership and the right to operate the dispensary. The fight concerns an ownership group involving David and Kathy Sanchez against their former partner, Duke Rodriguez, and his group, Ultra Health.”
Duke Rodriguez and Ultra Health were never partners with David and Kathy Sanchez or Holistic Patient Wellness Group, LLC, the sole holder of a license to operate a medical marijuana dispensary in CHAA 83, the CHAA in which Clifton, Arizona, is located. KEYTLaw, LLC, and Richard Keyt represent Holistic Patient Wellness Group, LLC.
Arizona Republic: “Motorists who have used marijuana cannot be charged with driving under the influence on that basis alone, even if some traces of the drug are detected in their blood, the state’s top court ruled Tuesday. Arizona Supreme Court justices disagreed with the Maricopa County Attorney Office, which argued before the court in November, that drivers whose blood tests reveal the presence of an inactive marijuana metabolite known as Carboxy-THC can be prosecuted for driving while impaired.”
Read the court’s opinion in the case of Arizona vs. Hrach Shilgevorkyan.
Washington Times: “The Mile High City was jammed with pot revelers Sunday for the annual 4/20 festival, but the mood was far from celebratory Monday as state legislators moved to tighten rules on marijuana products in the wake of two tragic deaths. The Colorado House passed unanimously bills to set possession limits for concentrated forms of marijuana such as hash oil, and to make cookies, candy and other foods infused with pot more easily identifiable.”
Huff Post: “Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) has signed a bill decriminalizing marijuana possession in the state, following the passage of the measure in Maryland’s General Assembly. Senate Bill 364 reduces the penalty for possessing less than 10 grams of marijuana from a criminal to a civil offense. First-time offenders will face fines up to $100, while a second offense will be punishable with a fine up to $250 and subsequent offenses up to $500. Additionally, the bill requires third-time offenders or offenders under the age of 21 to be evaluated for substance abuse problems, and to attend drug education classes.
UPI: “A Colorado company has introduced the first-ever marijuana vending machine, which will soon be put to use at a dispensary in Eagle-Vail, Colo. The so-called Zazz machine was produced by Stephen Shearin’s company, American Green, and was delivered to the Herbal Elements dispensary Friday.”
Roll Call: “As states and cities move to liberalize marijuana laws, the administration looks at changes to federal policy and the No. 2 House Democrat reverses course on decriminalization, Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. found himself in a charged congressional hearing on Tuesday. Pressed by members from both sides of the aisle to defend Justice Department practices in states that have legalized marijuana for recreational purposes, Holder insisted the Obama administration has not ‘retreated.’ Holder also said the DOJ won’t scale back marijuana punishments by rescheduling the drug, as House Democrats have been pushing President Barack Obama to do, saying he was ‘satisfied’ with what the department is doing. ‘The notion that somehow we have retreated from our enforcement of the Controlled Substances Act with regard to marijuana is not accurate,’ Holder told the House Judiciary Committee. He reiterated a DOJ memo laying out eight areas of priority for pot prosecutions, including marketing to minors, driving under the influence and criminal cartels.”
Ultra Health, LLC, sued Healing Healthcare 3, Inc. (Rocky Pahwa’s nonprofit corporation) and Scan4Health, LLC. See Ultra Health, LLC’s Verified Complaint and Application for Restraining Order and Preliminary and Permanent Injunction. The basis of the lawsuit is a Joint Venture Agreement between the parties. At a hearing on March 14, 2014, Judge Herrod asked the parties for evidence as to who has a license to own and operate an Arizona medical marijuana dispensary. The defendants gave the judge the letter dated March 14, 2014, from the Arizona Department of Health Services, which states “AZDHS can confirm that it does not recognize Ultra Health, LLC as a holder of this or any other dispensary registration certificate.”
Ultra Health, LLC, amended its Complaint in the above-referenced lawsuit to add Holistic Patient Wellness Group, LLC, as a defendant. HPWG is a client of my law firm, KEYTLaw, LLC.
Florence Reminder & Blade Tribune: “Duke Rodriguez, principal officer of Ultra Health in North Scottsdale, has hired a Scottsdale attorney to represent his company when it pursues a lawsuit against the town of Florence. Jeffrey S. Kaufman will represent Ultra Health when it begins its legal battle to establish a medical marijuana dispensary in Florence. . . . Rodriguez said the decision comes in the aftermath of the Town Council’s 5-2 vote on March 17, which denied a conditional use permit to his company to dispense medical marijuana . . . . The lawsuit could be filed in Pinal County Superior Court as soon as tomorrow, Rodriguez said. . . .
Capital Media Services: “Supporters of medical marijuana research have targeted a Republican state senator for recall because she is blocking a measure that could fund it. But the measure could be more public relations than actual political power. Kathy Inman, secretary of the newly organized Arizona Veterans Assistance Committee, said Monday that Kimberly Yee has used her position as chair of the Senate Education Committee to kill a measure that would allow some of funds collected from medical marijuana users and dispensaries to be used for university-based research on the drug.”
Green Valley News & Sun: “Sahuarita’s medical marijuana dispensary is under new management . . . . The name will be changed to UltraHealth Green Valley . . . said Duke Rodriguez . . . . UltraHealth, which specializes in several aspects of the medical marijuana industry, including growing the crop, has begun taking over management and will continue to take over during the next month, Rodriguez said. The three full-time employees will become employees of UltraHealth, which has 25 employees statewide . . . . His organization, which is more active in the Phoenix area, is courting a group of five dispensaries . . . . ‘We have experience at growing and cultivation and a wider access to inventory,” Rodriguez said’.”
Sahuarita’s dispensary is owned by Broken Arrow Herbal Center, Inc.
Query: Where and how does Ultra Health have experience growing and cultivating marijuana? See “AZ Dept. of Health Services Confirms Ultra Health, LLC Lacks a License for a Medical Marijuana Dispensary.”
Washington Times: “Just because marijuana is legal in Colorado doesn’t mean the black market for the drug has disappeared. Rather, the opposite, police officials said. ‘[Legalization] has done nothing more than enhance the opportunity for the black market, said Lt. Mark Comte of the Colorado Springs police vice and narcotics unit, in The Associated Press. ‘If you can get it tax-free on the corner, you’re going to get it on the corner’.”
Washington Times: “Billionaire philanthropist George Soros hopes the U.S. goes to pot, and he is using his money to drive it there. With a cadre of like-minded, wealthy donors, Mr. Soros is dominating the pro-legalization side of the marijuana debate by funding grass-roots initiatives that begin in New York City and end up affecting local politics elsewhere. Through a network of nonprofit groups, Mr. Soros has spent at least $80 million on the legalization effort since 1994
CBS Denver: “More people are claiming they are being pulled over out of state to see if they have marijuana simply because they have Colorado license plates. They strongly suspect it’s because Colorado stores now legally sell marijuana to those over the age of 21. The Colorado Drug Investigators Association says there have been a lot of seizures of marijuana from cars leaving Colorado and going out of state. Drivers are complaining they are being stopped for no good reason.”
FINRA is the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority. FINRA is dedicated to investor protection and market integrity through effective and efficient regulation of the securities industry. FINRA is not part of the government. It is an independent, not-for-profit organization authorized by Congress to protect America’s investors by making sure the securities industry operates fairly and honestly.
FINRA issued an investor alert warning people about possible marijuana stock scams. Here are some choice quotes from FINRA’s Marijuana Stock Scam alert.
We are reissuing this alert to warn investors not only about the potential for fraud in this arena, but also to reiterate the risks of investing in thinly traded companies about which little is known. Regardless of industry sector, any so-called “hot” stock can burn your portfolio. Rather than getting swept away, take time before you invest to learn more about the company, its products or services and the people running it. . . .
Like many investment scams, pitches to invest in potentially fraudulent marijuana-related companies may arrive in a variety of ways—faxes, email or text message invitations to webinars, infomercials, tweets or blog posts. Regardless of how you first hear about them, the offers almost always contain hallmarks of “pump and dump” ploys. Specifically, fraudsters lure investors with aggressive, optimistic—and potentially false and misleading—statements or information designed to create unwarranted demand for shares of a small, thinly traded company with little or no history of financial success (the pump). Once share prices and volumes reach a peak, the cons behind the scam sell off their shares at a profit, leaving investors with worthless stock (the dump). . . .
To avoid potential marijuana-related stock scams: . . . .
Know where the stock trades. Most unsolicited spam recommendations involve stocks that do not trade on The NASDAQ Stock Market (NASDAQ OMX), the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE Euronext) or other registered national securities exchanges. Instead, these stocks may be quoted on an over-the-counter (OTC) quotation platform like the FINRA-operated Over-the-Counter Bulletin Board (OTCBB) and the platform operated by OTC Markets Group, Inc. . . .
Be wary of frequent changes to a company’s name or business focus. Name changes and the potential for manipulation often go hand in hand. One low-priced stock now claiming to be in the medical marijuana business has had four name changes in the past 10 years. Another company switched from the coffee business to focus “on the rapidly emerging medical marijuana industries.” . . .
If a Problem Occurs
If you own or operate or are involved in management of an Arizona medical marijuana dispensary you need to take extra care to prevent people from hacking into your computer systems, camera systems and dispensary agent records of the Arizona Department of Health Services. Many types of computer hacks are felonies under Arizona criminal law. Today I contacted an Assistant Arizona Attorney General and discussed the following statute:
Arizona Revised Statutes Section 13-2316.A states:
A person who acts without authority or who exceeds authorization of use commits computer tampering by:
1. Accessing, altering, damaging or destroying any computer, computer system or network, or any part of a computer, computer system or network, with the intent to devise or execute any scheme or artifice to defraud or deceive, or to control property or services by means of false or fraudulent pretenses, representations or promises.
2. Knowingly altering, damaging, deleting or destroying computer programs or data.
3. Knowingly introducing a computer contaminant into any computer, computer system or network.
4. Recklessly disrupting or causing the disruption of computer, computer system or network services or denying or causing the denial of computer or network services to any authorized user of a computer, computer system or network.
5. Recklessly using a computer, computer system or network to engage in a scheme or course of conduct that is directed at another person and that seriously alarms, torments, threatens or terrorizes the person. For the purposes of this paragraph, the conduct must both:
(a) Cause a reasonable person to suffer substantial emotional distress.
(b) Serve no legitimate purpose.
6. Preventing a computer user from exiting a site, computer system or network-connected location in order to compel the user’s computer to continue communicating with, connecting to or displaying the content of the service, site or system.
Arizona Revised Statutes Section 13-2316.E states:
Computer tampering pursuant to subsection A, paragraph 1 of this section is a class 3 felony. Computer tampering pursuant to subsection A, paragraph 2, 3 or 4 of this section is a class 4 felony, unless the computer, computer system or network tampered with is a critical infrastructure resource, in which case it is a class 2 felony. Computer tampering pursuant to subsection A, paragraph 5 of this section is a class 5 felony.
US News & Word Report: “California resident Valerie Okun is one step closer to reclaiming medical marijuana seized by Arizona police near the Mexican border in 2011. The U.S. Supreme Court declined Monday to review state court rulings that found Okun is entitled to the return of her marijuana, currently held by the Yuma County Sheriff’s Office. . . . The Superior Court in Yuma County and the Arizona Court of Appeals Division One previously sided with Okun.”