Three illegal marijuana shops raided in the Rockaways leading to one arrest, $82K in fines: NYC Sheriff

The NYC Sheriff’s Office raided three illegal marijuana shops in one day in the Rockaways, arresting one worker and issuing $82,000 in fines and violations.
File photo by Dean Moses

South Queens lawmakers are applauding New York City Sheriff Anthony Miranda and his team for raiding three illegal marijuana shops in the Rockaways last week.

File photo by Dean Moses

Two of the stores are located less than 600 feet from a church, and a third shop is less than 200 feet from a public library frequented by children. The shops were not only illegally selling marijuana, but also narcotics and alcohol, according to Assemblymember Stacey Pheffer Amato, who coordinated with the Sheriff’s Office on the crackdown which resulted in the confiscation of the illegal drugs, along with an arrest and more than $82,000 in summonses and violations.

The Sheriff’s Office raided CJJ’s 115 Lounge, located at 114-30 Rockaway Beach Blvd. in Rockaway Park; Sweet Deli Minimart Corp., located at 112-30 Rockaway Beach Blvd. in Rockaway Park; and Sand Box Exotic Corp., located at 92-09 Rockaway Beach Blvd, in Rockaway Beach—all on Thursday, Jan 25.

“I applaud the work of our Sheriff’s Department for acting on behalf of the people of District 32 and coming down on these businesses,” Council Member Joann Ariola said. “The sale of unlicensed marijuana cannot be tolerated. We have rigid licensing requirements in place for a reason, and these operators who attempt to skirt those requirements directly endanger the health and well-being of the general public. This cannot go on.”

Assemblymember Stacey Pheffer Amato and Sheriff Anthony Miranda have been working together to craft new legislation to combat illegal marijuana. Photo courtesy of Stacey Pheffer Amato’s office

The Sheriff’s Office reported that one worker was arrested, with the shops slapped with multiple summonses and violations totaling more than $82,000 in fines. These included 8 C-Summonses, 7 Notices of Violations and 81 counts of violations.

Seized contraband included 199 packages of THC flower weighing a total of 8.47 pounds, 872 THC pre-roll weighing a total of 1.92 pounds, 314 packages of THC edibles weighing a total of 37.5 pounds, 403 flavored vape products, 158 THC vapes, 19.6 cartons of untaxed cigarettes and 788 packages of other tobacco products. Copious amounts of illegal marijuana and narcotics were also confiscated by the Sheriff’s Office, according to Pheffer Amato.

“I want to thank Sheriff Miranda and the amazing team at the NYC Sheriff’s Office. Through their determined work, illegal and dangerous narcotics were taken off the street, and an arrest was made,” Pheffer Amato said. “I’m honored to have a strong partnership with the Sheriff’s Office.”

Pheffer Amato added that her office continues to work with Miranda to craft new legislation to further stop illegal marijuana. She noted that she voted against legalizing cannabis.

“The law does not go far enough to combat illegal stores, let alone those that sell narcotics,” Pheffer Amato said. “This is why I voted no on the legalization of marijuana. We are now facing a public health and a quality-of-life crisis that I plan to address with every legal tool available.”