Hamilton police have laid marijuana possession and trafficking charges after they raided two businesses last week.

The two shops at 174 King St. W. — Melanheadz Canadian Cannabis Movement and Kush Pixies Kitchen — are licensed to distribute medical marijuana, police said, but had violated the regulations of that licensing.

In order to be approved for a licence, producers must:

  • Employ a quality assurance person with appropriate training, experience and knowledge.
  • Have an indoor production site (not in a private residence).
  • Have restricted access to their production site.
  • Have a 24/7 camera security system and alarm system.
  • Hold valid security clearance, authorized by the Minister of Health.
  • Provide notification of their application and details about their site to local police, fire and government officials.

Between October 2012 and January 2013, the police vice and drug unit conducted an investigation into the businesses after they received information that the owners were trafficking marijuana and marijuana baked goods out of the storefronts, which is not authorized by Health Canada’s Medicinal Marijuana Access Regulations Program.

On January 30, police raided the businesses and charged a 36-year-old Hamilton man and a 20-year-old Hamilton woman with trafficking, possession and production of marijuana, as well as possession of proceeds of crime. 

CBC Hamilton spoke to a client of MCCM who experiences chronic migraines. The source, who asked not to be named, said he buys from the business because marijuana he has purchased from other licensed suppliers doesn't give him sufficient relief.

"A person like me, I need a specific medication to help me because I have a disability," he said.

"They were providing me adequate medicine to help me function. My thing is, if I can't get my medicine ... I will lose my job, I will lose my house, I will lose everything."