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City officials shut down an illegal cannabis operation in South Los Angeles on Tuesday.
The store has operated since 2018 at a building on the 2100 block of West Florence Avenue, according to L.A. City Attorney Hydee Feldstein Soto.
The owners are accused of illegally selling cannabis and cannabis products from the storefront, which is located within 700 feet of two elementary schools and a library, authorities said.
The owners and their alleged shell companies used in the operation were identified as:
-Jin Kang and his company JYP Investments, LLC. Kang is the current property owner. -Tony Huang and his companies 2138 W Florence Investment LLC, Group 25 Holdings LLC, and TNS Management Group, LLC -Philip Oh and his companies LA Florence Investment LLC and Global Solutions I LLC
Over the past few years, Los Angeles police received ongoing complaints regarding the illegal shop including multiple car accidents, heavy foot traffic and cannabis being sold to minors.
LAPD officers executed nine search warrants which yielded “large amounts of cannabis, cash and guns, and at least four undercover purchase operations.”
Despite the search warrants, authorities said the owners continued to operate.
The city attorney alleges the operators “utilized shell companies and LLCs to hide their involvement and shirk responsibility tied to the illegal activity.”
In addition to shuttering the storefront, the suspects were ordered to pay $450,000 in civil penalties.
If the owners violate the order to stop selling illegal cannabis, they’ll be fined a minimum of $1 million in civil penalties, officials said.
“Cannabis sales in California are regulated for good reason — to ensure that businesses operate safely and legally, keep cannabis from being sold to children and regulate the industry so as to avoid nuisances and undue concentration of cannabis locations in an area,” said L.A. City Attorney Feldstein Soto. “The illegal activity at this store went on for far too long and was alarming for the neighborhood – with guns being recovered by law enforcement and complaints about the store selling cannabis products to minors. That ends now. I’m proud that my office put a stop to this and helped to level the playing field for legitimate business owners who operate by the rules.”