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Colorado Attorney General Cynthia H. Coffman announced today that the State has secured a record $1 million civil penalty against Popo Wee Mart, LLC, a former Colorado Springs convenience store, and its owner, Jin Ju Kim, for selling illegal synthetic cannabinoids, commonly known as Spice, at the store. The Attorney General's Consumer Protection Section sued Popo Wee Market and Jin Ju Kim in May 2014 for continuing to sell Spice products at the store despite an earlier seizure of all its illegal products by law enforcement agents.
“Spice is a very dangerous product that needs to be taken off the street,” said Coffman. “I hope this significant penalty will send the desired message to other retailers who think about selling Spice that the penalties for doing so will be extreme.”
This is the third Spice-related judgment the Attorney General’s Office has obtained in the last seven months. Last September the Boulder County District Court approved a $100,000 penalty against Longmont-based Lemmings, Inc. d/b/a tobacco King and in November the Arapahoe County District Court approved a $100,000 penalty against Aurora-based retailer Paymon’s Market.
In ordering the highest penalty awarded to date in a Spice case, an El Paso County district court judge found that the defendants, based on the earlier arrest of another retailer selling Spice and two different seizures of Spice products by law enforcement from her store, had actual knowledge that these products were both illegal and dangerous.
Attorney General Coffman expressed her appreciation for the other agencies that assisted with this case: Colorado Springs Metro Vice, Narcotics & Intelligence Division; City of Fountain Police Department; Colorado Bureau of Investigation; Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment; and Rocky Mountain Poison & Drug Center.
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