Although Colorado has the country’s most lenient medical marijuana laws, one particular point in fact helps medical marijuana regulators and law enforcement officials find and shut down illegal commercial marijuana cultivations and prosecute those operating them. According to the Associated Press, Colorado is the only state that allows medical marijuana companies to profit from selling the drug, thus the companies are governed by strict business licensing requirements, making it easier for law enforcement to locate, raid, and prosecute illegal commercial growers of marijuana.
Before the implementation of marijuana business licensing requirements in 2010, dispensaries, infused product manufacturers, and cultivators operated without oversight. Although medical marijuana users were required to register with the state, businesses that cultivated and distributed the drug were not. This made it very difficult for law enforcement to identify who was cultivating the drug legally and who wasn’t.