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Illegal cannabis shops shut down by Phuket officials

PHOTO: Flickr/Beekman Foundation

Phuket officials are clamping down on illegal cannabis dispensaries in the province, shutting them down and warning others. The Phuket Express reports that a number of dispensaries in Phuket have been shuttered, with business operators told they must adhere to the laws governing the provision of cannabis.

To date, 13 cannabis dispensaries in Phuket have been closed, according to the provincial public health office. The PPHO’s chief medic, Kusak Kukiattikoon, says 250 shops have had their licences revoked as a result of various infractions.

He goes on to say the authorities will continue to monitor cannabis providers and will conduct weekly checks on premises. Dispensaries found to be violating the Thai Traditional Medical Professions Act will have their licences suspended for 30 days, and if they continue to break the law, they will have their licences revoked.

Anyone found to be selling cannabis without a permit faces up to a year imprisonment and/or a 20,000 baht.

Since cannabis was decriminalised by the public health minister last year, there has been a distinct lack of clarity around the rules with creative interpretations of what was meant to promote medicinal use only .

Multiple cannabis dispensaries sprang up in Phuket and elsewhere in the country and, until recently, the authorities mostly seemed to turn a blind eye.

SOURCE: The Phuket Express

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