US: Santa Barbara County prosecutors move against five cannabis operators

Five former North County cannabis operators are scheduled for hearings this month in Superior Court in two separate cases; the charges they face include alleged perjury, unlawful cultivation and sale of cannabis, and conspiracy to commit a crime.

The two cases — Herbal Angels and Santa Barbara Greenland Deliveries, or SBGD — are among dozens of criminal complaints that District Attorney Joyce Dudley has filed against cannabis operators since the Board of Supervisors opened the floodgates to the industry in 2018, transforming Santa Barbara County into a pot capital of California. Typically, these cases have been settled in the pre-trial stage.

In court, lawyers for the Herbal Angels and SBGD defendants will likely attack the ordinance itself, as well as state and federal marijuana laws, pointing to their complexities, loopholes, and contradictions.

“There’s so much gray area in the whole process,” said Josh Webb, an attorney for Arthur Olowski, one of three defendants in the SBGD case. “It’s been the Wild West.”

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