Feds raid seven East Bay medical pot sites

October 29, 2007

, Bay Area News Group

Federal officials raided seven locations in the East Bay this morning that were connected to a medical marijuana dispensary in Hayward, officials said.

The Compassionate Collective of Alameda County, on Mission Boulevard in unincorporated Hayward, was raided at 6 a.m. by federal Drug Enforcement Administration and the sheriff's office. Agents from the Internal Revenue Service were also at the raid.

Two other sites in Hayward, another two in Oakland, one in Lafayette and another in Berkeley were also raided in connection with the dispensary, officials said.

Two men who are brothers were arrested in connection with the raid, but officials had no other information about their identity or roles in the operation.

Those operations grew and packaged medical marijuana, officials said.

A warrant was served at the Hayward dispensary, at 21222 Mission Blvd., according to the sheriff's office.

Several patients at the clinic are holding signs, saying "We are not criminals" in English and Spanish.

Charles Matthews, 21, a patient from Alameda, said he uses marijuana for back problems and migraines. "We're not criminals, it's not like crack or (chemical) drugs. It's natural, it soothes you," Matthews said.

Adam Haselben, 21, of San Jose, said he suffers from severe headaches.

"This is the best pharmacy around. It has the highest quality medicine at the most compassionate prices." About the raid, Haselben said "It's pretty much pointless. They come in, take everything and leave and it opens up again."



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