Tempe police bust 2 marijuana 'compassion clubs'

PHOENIX (AP) — Tempe police say they have arrested the operator of two "compassion clubs" and seized a garage full of mature marijuana plants.

The Arizona Republic (http://bit.ly/Vm0ADC) says the arrest came after a series of search warrants were served at Top Shelf Medicine, formerly known as the AzGoGreen Co-op.

Compassion clubs opened in Phoenix-area strip malls and office parks when medical marijuana advocates became frustrated by the long delay between the state Medical Marijuana Act passing in 2010 and dispensaries opening.

Arizona has more than 35,000 residents with medical marijuana cards, but only six dispensaries where card-holders can legally obtain the drug.

While the dispensaries are tightly regulated, the compassion clubs are not regulated in any manner although they generally require members to have state-issued medical marijuana cards to obtain marijuana.

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Information from: The Arizona Republic, http://www.azcentral.com

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