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Amsterdam Cannabis Cup shut down by police

November 24, 2011

By Marlene Werner

AMSTERDAM – Dutch police raided the 24th edition of the annual Cannabis festival Sep. 23, shutting down the expo, searching visitors at the exits and confiscating cannabis and hash, an affiliated magazine reported.

“You need to leave the building through the exits. When leaving the property, you will be subjected to a search by police [inaudible] of the opium act,” an announcement over loud speakers informed, as shown in a video posted on LiveLeaks by an attendee.

Uniformed officers entered the premises of Borchland, accompanied by several tax agents, and separated visitors from exhibitors, who were required to remain at their stands.

Police searched visitors before allowing them to leave, while revenue agents investigated illegal activities of present exhibitors.

Undercover investigations had uncovered violations of the Opium Act, with people giving away free samples of cannabis and hash to promote their products Sep. 22; facts that triggered the subsequent raid, a police officer was reported saying.

High Times, the festival’s host, reported that a misunderstanding about a permit application filed by the venue to host the event implicated the law enforcement.

The premises were emptied after two hours of police action; no attendees were arrested, while one vendor identified as surpassing Dutch legal cannabis possession limits.

“Wow. The Dutch Police have entered the cannabis cup and they are shutting us down. Sad day…,” High Times Magazine twittered as a response to the news.

Never before has the expo been raided in its 24-year long existence.

Restriction of the national cannabis market figures highly on the Dutch government’s agenda in recent times, with the introduction of a ‘wietpas’, which restricts cannabis’ sales to residents, waiting for implementation on a national level.

Categories: Courts and Crime, Politics
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