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Opening an Online Smoke Shop - Legal Issues?

Discussion in 'General Business' started by m1ndless, Jul 4, 2008.

  1. m1ndless

    m1ndless Peon

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    #41
    Looking into the operation pipe dream, many of the shops raided are still open for business.

    I can triple my money selling these items, and it's what I have a passion for, this is what I want to do, and I am going to figure out how to do it, even if it means opening my own store.
    SEMrush
     
    m1ndless, Jul 6, 2008 IP
    SEMrush
  2. m1ndless

    m1ndless Peon

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    #42
    I met with Ralph Ellinwood, one of the attorneys I found on the NORML website. He assured me it would be perfectly legal to run this type of shop online, as long as I follow certain legal guidelines. I have to be very specific in the way I list and sell the items, and keeping my inventory strictly to glass products, since rolling papers and other items like that would put me in the "drug paraphenilia" catagorey, and he also assured me that glass tobacco pipes ARE traditional tobacco pipes, since they are intended for the use of tobacco, not drugs.

    Acquiring a tobacco lincense would also help me out too, but is not needed.

    I met with this guy:

    Ralph E. Ellinwood
    Phone: 520-882-2100
    Fax: 520-882-2026
    117 West Washington Street
    Tuscon, AZ 85701
     
    m1ndless, Jul 8, 2008 IP
  3. GRIM

    GRIM Prominent Member

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    #43
    Good luck with that, many of the ones busted had the same story.

    Glass is not 'traditionally' for tobacco, but I know you don't care.

    Wish you the best of luck.
     
    GRIM, Jul 8, 2008 IP
  4. m1ndless

    m1ndless Peon

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    #44
    And many of the sites that were "busted" are still in business. The only sites that got shut down were using the word "bong" or had it listed in a way that would make it for use with marijuana, not tobacco.

    Like my attorney said, it's all about how you list and sell the item. If I sell pot t-shirts on the site, and then try to claim that the pipes are for tobacco, I would get shut down.

    Now you see why I don't trust what some random guy says on the internet? You tried, but you were still wrong in the end buddy.
     
    m1ndless, Jul 8, 2008 IP
  5. GRIM

    GRIM Prominent Member

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    #45
    :rolleyes:

    Buddy I am only trying to keep you out of jail.

    It is NOT simply how it is labeled, or did you not read anything I posted? The articles I linked to.

    I am far from wrong, but 'think' whatever you wish to.

    The federal statute takes away the 'subjective' part of it.

    Yeah some are still in business, when Chills got busted I know from first hand knowledge the feds came through and discussed what they could still carry. Guess what glass pipes was on thing they COULD NOT, papers was the main item they were still allowed to carry under FEDERAL law.
     
    GRIM, Jul 8, 2008 IP
  6. theman12468

    theman12468 Peon

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    #46
    Just make sure with every sale you can confirm there age...and stress the fact that that this sole smoking pipe or bong, whatever you sell is for tobacco use only - if you got to, get a nice glass blower to design the text "Traditional Tobacco Use Only", on the side on the smoking device, fumed with gold...check the states line laws for shipping to and through.

    Yes the majority of the major grass smoking sites are based outside of the USA. Remember though, yours is for "Tobacco Smoking Only".

    And if by all chances the authority finds a loophole to get ya, hopefully all that money you made selling pipes, will go to that lawyer.
     
    theman12468, Jul 8, 2008 IP
  7. GRIM

    GRIM Prominent Member

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    #47
    That's the problem, in most cases they take your assets so you have no $$

    I wish the guy luck, but honestly I have first hand knowledge on the subject, of the busts, of more than that, talked to many attorneys, one first hand.

    It is a huge 'gray' area in most states the way it is, federal law makes it that much stiffer, 'then' you have states like Iowa and Pennsylvania who are anal on this shit.

    All it will take is one more investigation to take 40 or more people down, do you honestly want to take that shot?

    I wish I could get into more details, I however know first hand that the entire 'tobacco use only' is a BS statement when it comes to FEDERAL jurisdiction!
     
    GRIM, Jul 8, 2008 IP
  8. m1ndless

    m1ndless Peon

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    #48
    So GRIM, you are trying to say that I just wasted my money for a attorney, and that some random guy on the internet is correct?

    I read everything you posted, and did extensive research, and everything I found says it's completely legal to sell online.

    If what you are saying is true, I want my money back.

    If I got busted, wouldn't they just take my stuff and shut me down, end of story?
     
    m1ndless, Jul 8, 2008 IP
  9. GRIM

    GRIM Prominent Member

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    #49
    Some random guy with first hand knowledge, '18' check box does not help you when it comes to paraphernalia laws.

    If you want, PM me if you promise not to put publicly I'll explain why I know what I know!
     
    GRIM, Jul 8, 2008 IP
  10. theman12468

    theman12468 Peon

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    #50
    Grim, I knew you would reply quick like your day at the gym today...

    You would have to obtain proof of their ID, no doubt about...

    Someone mentioned Chong getting arrested. So I've heard it was because of the Pennsylvania laws with transport them through or to. Correct me if I'm wrong...
     
    theman12468, Jul 8, 2008 IP
  11. GRIM

    GRIM Prominent Member

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    #51
    Pennsylvania laws had lots to do with it, coupled with the feds ;)
     
    GRIM, Jul 8, 2008 IP
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  12. theman12468

    theman12468 Peon

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    #52
    Yea, of course it would be federal, it sure ain't state...the reason, he was shipping through states or to one...simple as that

    So basically if you plan on selling glass pipes over the internet, you need to cover your ass in all kinds of aspects...It's not illegal to own or sell these pipes only if they are not intended for any other use besides tobacco.

    Let me tell you what, if they were illegal, there wouldn't be local head shops spread all across the states. Unless some state legislatures don't allow it in their state. I would like to hear the states that deny glass pipes and other novelty smoking pieces...

    There are so many guidelines that the gov't probably wants US local based headshops to follow and be governed under, however web-based sites feel they have no restrictions...unless your smart about it...
     
    theman12468, Jul 8, 2008 IP
  13. m1ndless

    m1ndless Peon

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    #53
    I want to open up, but after what GRIM told me it's seems like it might not be worth the risk.

    How would they track me down anyways? I used a fake address when I registered the site, well not fake, it's for my apartment, I just did not put my apartment number, and I am not on the lease. My legal address is my moms house, but she is never home.

    I don't know what to do now, I bought all these pieces expecting this to be perfectly legal. :(
     
    m1ndless, Jul 8, 2008 IP
  14. theman12468

    theman12468 Peon

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    #54
    They would find you, trust me...

    It probably isn't a good idea, unless you know a good lawyer to defend to you...is it worth the risk? Probably not unless you want to make a point and want to go through the hassle and money...
     
    theman12468, Jul 8, 2008 IP
  15. m1ndless

    m1ndless Peon

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    #55
    Well I bought $200 worth of inventory that I could turn into about $800 no problem, which is why I want to sell these items.

    I might just go to a swap meet or something?
     
    m1ndless, Jul 8, 2008 IP
  16. theman12468

    theman12468 Peon

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    #56
    Nah, just smoke tobacco out of them, haha
     
    theman12468, Jul 8, 2008 IP
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  17. m1ndless

    m1ndless Peon

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    #57
    I have over 30 pieces... lol
     
    m1ndless, Jul 8, 2008 IP
  18. kidcudi

    kidcudi Guest

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    #58
    I feel bad for digging up this old thread but it's basically exactly what I'm looking for. I'm looking into starting a site that will only feature herb vaporizers and grinders - not "bongs", "pipes", "papers" . There are currently 8-10 online stores I have seen that are hosted and operating in the US selling these products. They are selling them with "legal buds" and other alternatives to what is illegal. Some sites only feature grinders and vaporizers and are not involved in any affiliate programs linking them to marijuana. One of the very popular grinder manufactures actually advertises their products as cutlery products. Also, most of the vaporizer manufactures / suppliers are located in the US and seemingly operate like there is no big deal. Most of these manufactures have been around for a while and have been shipping their vaporizers across state lines to wholesalers and end users for years. Also, with Medical MJ in (13 soon to be 16) states users need an efficient and safe way of delivering their medicine. I realize selling items over state lines through the mail violates federal law but these items are not related to what is described in Sect. 863 from the DEA site (the closest example would be electronic pipe but essentially it's not the same at all). I have also been reading that the same woman that put chong away for 9 months is currently trying to charge the makers of "The Wizzinator" with paraphernalia charges. I don't know I'm just trying to spark discussion and it's something I have been interested in.
     
    kidcudi, Feb 4, 2009 IP
  19. jamesmokes

    jamesmokes Peon

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    #59
    ya dude i agree with you.There are many online smoke shops based in US as well. how it will run if it is not legal.
     
    jamesmokes, Jun 30, 2010 IP