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2023 announcements

California Department of Cannabis Control releases cannabis enforcement operation statistics for 2021 and 2022, reports surge in efforts to dismantle illicit market

Mar 2, 2023

Year-over-year gains hit double and triple digit percentage increases for search warrants issued, illegal cannabis plants eradicated, firearms seized, and arrests   

The Department of Cannabis Control (DCC) released its 2021 and 2022 enforcement statistics, highlighting year- over year trends that show significant growth in the number of search warrants issued, arrests made, and illegal cannabis plants eradicated in an effort to tackle illegal market operations that threaten the health and safety of the environment, communities and consumers and undermine the licensed cannabis market.  

DCC-led search warrant operations increased from 62 in 2021 to 155 in 2022, a 150 percent increase. DCC also seized over 41,726 pounds of illegal cannabis in 2021 and more than 144,254 pounds in 2022, a 246 percent increase. Arrests more than tripled, with 17 in 2021 and 56 in 2022. And DCC led operations that seized $243,017,836 worth of cannabis last year, a 212 percent increase from the $77,772,936 seized in 2021. 

“Through each enforcement action our teams gain a better understanding of how these criminal operations work which helps us better focus our resources and amplify our results to protect the health and safety of all Californians,” said Bill Jones, Chief of DCC’s Law Enforcement Division. “I would like to thank the dedicated group of officers in our department who work closely with our law enforcement partners to make these operations successful. Together, we are cracking down on the illicit cannabis market and ensuring California maintains a well-regulated and legal marketplace that benefits Californians.” 

DCC numbers break down operations by those it led, those it assisted, and the combined total of both, including those coordinated through Governor Newsom’s newly established Unified Cannabis Enforcement Taskforce (UCETF). UCETF is multi-agency, cross-jurisdictional taskforce designed to more efficiently coordinate local, state and federal resources that combat illegal cannabis operations and transnational criminal organizations. 

More information can be found in the tables below: 

DCC Led20212022Percent Change
Search Warrant Operations 62155150%
Pounds of Seized Cannabis 41,726.68144,254.71246%
Retail Value of Seized Product $77,772,936.07$243,017,836.53212% 
Cannabis Plants Eradicated  19,221264,1961,274% 
Firearms Seized405435%
Money Seized $6,091,730.11$1,297,163.29-79%
Arrests 1756229%
DCC Assisted20212022Percent Change
Search Warrant Operations 52144177%
Pounds of Seized Cannabis 296,780.21 295,546 0%
Retail Value of Seized Product $492,367,234.23$493,819,785.2829% 
Cannabis Plants Eradicated  720,327696,016 -3%
Firearms Seized3785130%
Money Seized $1,324,344.09 $542,981 -59% 
Arrests 8311943%
Combined Total20212022Percent Change
Search Warrant Operations 114299162%
Pounds of Seized Cannabis 338,506.89439,800.7030%
Retail Value of Seized Product $570,140,170.30$736,837,621.8129% 
Cannabis Plants Eradicated  739,548 960,212 30%
Firearms Seized77139130%
Money Seized $7,716,074.20$1,840,144.29 -76% 
Arrests 10017575%

To learn more about DCC’s frequent efforts to disrupt the illegal cannabis market, we encourage you to follow our Twitter and Facebook pages for updates.