Feds say Colorado pot connected to Colombian drug money

Hector Diaz

Hector Diaz

DENVER — There are some new concerns about Colorado’s marijuana industry.

Federal authorities reveal for the first time a connection between local businesses and Colombian drug money.

In new documents filed in federal court, authorities say Colombian national Hector Diaz confessed to sending $400,000 from Colombia to Colorado to buy a pot warehouse.

The new allegations have put the marijuana industry in Colorado on the defensive.

“I know our detractors are going to say this means every business must be getting money from Colombia, but there’s likely a few bad actors and it’s good to know they are being caught,” says Michael Elliott.

He says the industry supports the federal authorities’ actions of enforcing the law. He also says the majority of Colorado pot shops operate legitimately and should not be tainted by these allegations.

“We actually embraced taxes on us to ensure the state had all the money it needs to make this program work and part of that is enforcement.”

Investigators arrested Diaz last year on a visa violation after they found a picture of him taken inside a home in Cherry Hills.

They raided it last year after court records showed its tenants were also connected to the Colombian money.

Only Diaz faces charges but the investigation is ongoing. Diaz is due back in federal court next week.