Judge orders cannabis firm Sweet Leaf co-owners to pay $8.8 million for unpaid rent

A Denver court issued an $8.8 million judgment against the owners of the once-thriving Colorado marijuana chain Sweet Leaf for unpaid rent, late fees and interest in breaching four commercial leases in Denver.

Denver District Judge Edward Bronfin issued the decision against Sweet Leaf co-owners Matthew Aiken, Christian Johnson and Anthony Sauro on behalf of the properties’ landlord, RF Elati 4125. RF Elati’s principal is listed as Ryan Fox of Saguache, Colorado, according to Secretary of State filings.

Sweet Leaf earlier this year lost all 26 of its marijuana cultivation, processing and dispensary licenses in Denver for allegedly allowing customers to exceed daily purchase limits.

Subsequently in October, Aiken, Johnson and Sauro agreed to pay $2 million in fines to the state, sell Sweet Leaf’s remaining Colorado licenses and stay out of the state’s MJ industry for 15 years.

A Sweet Leaf store in Portland, Oregon, is still listed as open.

Denver cannabis law firm Greenspoon Marder represented RF Elati in the case against Sweet Leaf’s co-owners.

Rachel Gillette, chair of Greenspoon’s cannabis practice, said in a statement that the firm’s goal is to help marijuana businesses become a “normal and trusted part of the corporate world.

“This case represents justice for the business owner playing by the rules, regardless of the type of business.”

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