Illinois Cannabis Transporters Sue State Over Alleged Illegal Shipments

The lawsuit alleges the state Ag Department knows of the issue and is doing nothing.

A coalition of 13 licensed cannabis transporters in Illinois have filed suit against regulators, alleging that the state has let illegal marijuana delivery operations run rampant.

The suit, filed Tuesday in Sangamon County Circuit Court in Illinois’ Seventh Judicial District, names the state Department of Agriculture and Secretary Jerry Costello as prime defendants. It alleges that the agency is “failing to enforce” the same state law that authorized their cannabis transportation businesses.

Illinois Transporter Litigation

Specifically, the 13 transporters allege that the state doesn’t have the manpower to enforce rules that prohibit licensed marijuana farmers from transporting their own crops to retailers and manufacturers, and gave two instances in which the plaintiffs said just such a thing had happened – and that regulators knew about it and did nothing.

“Despite having definitive evidence of unlawful transport operations, on information and belief, the IDOA has not taken any disciplinary action against any parties involved in these illegal transports because it does not have the staff to do so,” the suit asserts. “Instead, the IDOA is knowingly and willfully allowing entities to illegally perform cannabis transports in Illinois.”

“As a result, illegal cannabis transporters are acting with impunity, jeopardizing the safety of the Illinois public and essentially blocking licensed Illinois transporters, like plaintiffs, from participating in the Illinois cannabis industry,” the suit states.

The department declined to comment to CBS News on the lawsuit, citing the pending nature of the litigation.

John Schroyer

John Schroyer has been a reporter since 2006, initially with a focus on politics, and covered the 2012 Colorado campaign to legalize marijuana. He has written about the cannabis industry specifically since 2014, after being on hand for the first-ever legal cannabis sales on New Year’s Day that year in Denver. John has covered subsequent marijuana market launches in California and Illinois, has written about every aspect of the marijuana trade, and was part of the team that built the cannabis industry’s first-ever trade show, MJBizCon. He joined Green Market Report in 2022.

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