Northfield police searched a Tilton Road business Tuesday for synthetic marijuana, took two into custody and then asked City Council to revoke its mercantile license.
Police searched ACRAT at 1:30 p.m. after undercover officers spent several months buying synthetic marijuana at the shop, Chief Robert James said. Acrat advertises the sale of musical records and tapes outside, but a large portion of the facility is dedicated to the sale of smoking paraphernalia.
“We were aware they were selling synthetic cannabis for some time now,” James said Tuesday afternooon. Residents had complained, he said, that the store was selling drugs.
The sale and manufacturing of synthetic marijuana — a lab-produced marijuana strain mixed with herbs — only recently became illegal in New Jersey. State Attorney General Jeffrey Chiesa banned the drug Feb. 29.
Once officers’ drug purchases were tested and confirmed to be synthetic marijuana, James said, he applied for and acquired a warrant that allowed police to search for synthetic and regular marijuana, associated drug paraphernalia and to search through the store’s record and computer files.
Two people were taken in investigative custody, James said Tuesday night, but no charges had been filed as of 8 p.m.
During council’s meeting, James also asked the city’s governing body to revoke ACRAT’s mercantile license — a request it agreed to consider.
“We don’t have time for a business like that to be operating in Northfield. Period,” James said.
Based on city ordinance, James said, crimes of moral turpitude are basis for taking away a retailer’s license.
James said the Egg Harbor Township Police Department assisted with the investigation.
Staff Writer Rob Spahr contributed to this report.
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