The city of Vancouver, B.C. has filed injunctions in the B.C. Supreme Court to close down 17 of the city’s 55 unlicensed marijuana dispensaries.
Vancouver became the first city in Canada to regulate and license medical marijuana retailers in June, 2015. However, only six percent of dispensaries that applied for a license were successful, and dozens of shops have continued operating despite repeated warnings from city officials.
City officials say that the 17 dispensaries were targeted because of “their proximity to other shops, their response to enforcement action and community feedback,” CBC News reports.
According to chief licensing inspector Andrea Toma, the city will eventually seek injunctions against the remaining 38 dispensaries.
This development follows shortly on the heels of the already infamous ‘Operation Claudia,’ in which dozens of medical dispensaries in Toronto were raided by local law enforcement earlier this week.
Medical cannabis is legal in Canada, but producers must be properly licensed and can only dispense medicine through the federal mail — a system that many consider to be unsympathetic toward patients who may have particular concerns or needs that cannot be met with the current online shopping methods. The Canadian federal government has promised to legalize cannabis for recreational purposes sometime in 2017.
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