Five Arrested as Cops Seize 100 Pounds of Pot, $243K from Store in Burlington County, NJ
Authorities in Burlington County say they raided an illegal marijuana dispensary that was doing business in a strip mall on Route 38 in Lumberton Township.
Burlington County Prosecutor Scott Coffina says from that store, cops seized nearly a quarter-million dollars in cash, more than 100 pounds of marijuana, 48 packets of heroin, and more than a pound of psychedelic mushrooms.
The store, according to Coffina, was named Skraptyques and operated along side a pizzeria, a children’s dance studio, and other shops.
Along with raw marijuana, the store also sold edibles in counterfeit packages that resembled popular food items such as Cheetos, Life Savers, Nerds, Skittles, as well as a Cocoa Pebbles Krispie Bar which featured a picture on the package of Fred Flintstone with redness in his eyes.
Officials say an investigation revealed that customers who entered the store, "were met by an armed guard wearing a bulletproof vest. Their cell phones were taken and they were subjected to a body scan by a hand-held metal detector before being buzzed in to a secure back room. Once inside, a large display area showcased the marijuana and edibles that were for sale. Psychedelic mushrooms were also presented as an option. Customers would make their selections and a cash transaction would take place."
Five people were taken into custody following a four-week investigation that ended in late March.
The owners, 44-year-old Mathew Quinn and 30-year-old Crystal Cain, both of Mount Holly, were charged with first-degree possession with intent to distribute marijuana, second-degree possession with intent to distribute psilocybin mushrooms, third-degree fortifying a CDS manufacturing/distribution facility, and second-degree conspiracy to distribute a CDS.
Cain was additionally charged with third-degree possession of heroin and possession of drug paraphernalia (disorderly persons).
Three employees were also charged: 55-year-old Perry Brown of Morrisville, PA; 31-year-old Nicole Colley of Mount Holly; and 26-year-old Marion Huff of Florence. All were charged with first-degree possession with intent to distribute marijuana and second-degree conspiracy to distribute a CDS.
Colley was also charged with second-degree distribution of psilocybin mushrooms.
Brown, who provided security at the business, according to Coffina, was also charged with three weapon-related offenses.
A firearm was seized that Brown had in his possession at the time of his arrest.
Coffina said in a statement,
This operation was not an authorized cannabis dispensary such as those presently being approved by the State. Rather, this was a brazen retail outlet operating as a convenience store for illegal marijuana, other CDS, and edibles in packaging that would make them very attractive to young children when their customers brought them home. The approaching legalized retail market for cannabis still will not permit uncontrolled and, frankly, dangerous operations such as these, and we will continue our enforcement efforts to ensure the safety of Burlington County residents, especially our children.
The public is reminded that charges are accusations and all persons are considered innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.