Plymouth Vape Shop Raided By Police For Selling CBD Buds

A vape shop in Plymouth was raided by police this morning in what could be the first crackdown on the newly flourished and legally-contentious CBD hemp flower industry.

Five plain-clothed police officers arrived at Vaping is Personal, on Phelps Road in Devonport, at about 10 o’clock this morning, reports the Plymouth Herald.

Armed with a warrant issued under the Misuse of Drugs Act, the officers proceeding to confiscate products containing CBD.

Product seized include CBD rich hemp flowers, hemp tea, CBD and CBD oil.

Following the raid, Trevor Dodd from, the supplier of the CBD products to the Plymouth vape shop, drove three hours to  Charles Cross Police Station.

He took samples of his products and challenged the police to arrest him. He was “laughed at”, he said in a later report from the Plymouth Herald.

Additionally, his samples, which included raw hemp flowers, were not seized. He wasn’t even asked what they were.

CBD flower seized from Plymouth Vape Shop

Mr Dodd is quoted in the Herald as saying: “We import CBD flowers from Switzerland and other countries, we wholesale it and have a shop where we sell CBD-related products, which are totally, 100 per cent legal in the UK.

“Earlier today Vaping Is Personal Plymouth had their shop raided by five police officers and all their products containing CBD were seized and told they were illegal. Roughly £3,000 of stock has been confiscated.

“What we’re hoping is that the police realise they were ill-informed and don’t understand CBD is not a prohibited substance. We hope they understand the action they took was misguided and wrong.”

Paul Moore, from UK /USA CBD Limited, the company behind, said: “Nobody involved in today’s events sells, posseses, trades in or advocates the sale of cannabis.

“We have only, ever and will sell EU verified, EIHA (European industrial hemp agency) products that are freely available in all EU member states for any purpose. All of our products contain below the minimum THC content to be defined as hemp under UK law.”

Vaping is Personal in Plymouth

Police send buds for testing

A Devon and Cornwall Police spokesman said: “Following reports that items which may contain levels of a controlled substance are being sold from a shop in Plymouth, Police executed a warrant at an address on Phelps Road, Plymouth today (10/9).”

“A number of items have been seized which will now be sent for testing.

“No arrests have been made at this time in relation to his matter and police enquiries continue.”

Paul Moore retorted: “Our products contain CBD and trace amounts of THC which fall in line with the UK legal guidelines for pharmaceutical definitions and UK legal definitions of CBD products. Our products do not fall under the remit of the 1971 MDA (Misuse of Drugs Act).

“Our products are defined as industrial hemp and are clearly imported as such. All derivatives from such products are done so cleanly and safely using the highest grade laboratories in the EU at ISO 1 standard and above.

“All of our products come with UKAS certified laboratory tests, are free for mould, mildew and any other contaminants.

“They are grown to GMP standards, organic with no pesticides and extracted using the most sophisticated mechanisms in the western world to allow for a clean and safe supplement to be extracted from the raw material.”

We believe this to be the first police raid on a company for selling CBD-rich cannabis flower, something which has become more common from vape shops and online shops over the last six months or so.

Read: Where To Buy CBD Hemp Buds In The UK: A Complete Directory (Updated September 2018)

Are CBD Buds Legal?

Numerous shops have forged headfirst into the market despite murky laws that do not explicitly (or at least clearly) cover the selling of legally-grown hemp flowers with high levels of CBD.

CBD-rich cannabis flower, or CBD hemp buds, contain low levels of THC, which is the chemical in cannabis that gets you high.

CBD, meanwhile, has no psychotropic effects – in fact, it was even shown to be a potent antipsychotic by a recent study as well as offering a slew of other health benefits.

Lemon Haze (22% CBD) from

The Raid

Lee Whittaker, the other owner of Vaping is Personal, insisted to reporters that all their products were completely legal and that they had all relevant documentation and lad reports. which they offered to show the officers.

He told the Herald: “They started seizing every CBD product that we currently sell.

“When asked if they were asked if they were going to do any other vape shops, or Holland and Barrett, who also sell these products, they refused to comment and said we were the first one to get searched.

“CBD is a completely legal product, it’s sold by many shops, many health food shops, it’s a food supplement product.

“The fact that the police don’t know what the product is, it’s a prime example of that. They don’t know what the product is so they need to send it away for testing, their information is wrong.

“The police officer said when he was here that I clearly know more than he does about it, yet he’s felt the need to get a warrant to search my premises and seize my products, not knowing what he is seizing.”

Vaping is Personal also sell CBD products including flowers online at

1% THC limit

Mr Moore of THCfreeweed went on to say: “We have never in the past year had any confusion over the legality of these products. The law is very clear. CBD is legal, in any format. Isolated format, flowers, CBD oil, CBD tea, CBD Coffee, CBD e-liquids.

“The tolerances of THC allowed in products is up to and not over 1% THC to be considered legal. This is considered trace amounts and will not cause any psychoactive effects.

“Never once in the past year of importing this product have we seen such disregard for the legislation and such activities take place against one of our retailers.

“This is completely unheard of.”

Vaping is Personal reopened later in the day and have said that they are “challenging the legality of the search and breaches of PACE 84 as the warrant wasn’t endorsed and signed by the police officer and a list of property seized was point blank refused.

“Also a freedom of information request has gone into Plymouth court to ascertain what information was given to obtain the warrant.”

You can still buy CBD flowers from and

About Jack Woodhouse

A passionate cannabis proponent, Jack has been immersed in cannabis culture for over a decade. He launched High & Polite in 2017 and has since reached millions of people. He is the author of Overcoming Weed Dependence: The Truth About Addiction And The Secret To A Healthy Relationship With Cannabis

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11 Comments on “Plymouth Vape Shop Raided By Police For Selling CBD Buds”

  1. A spokesman from Devon and Cornwall Police said initially: “Police, assisted by trading standards executed a warrant at an address on Phelps Road, Devonport, Plymouth today.
    Plymouth City Council later confirmed its Trading Standards team was not involved.
    I can smell Peter Reynolds and CLEAR involved in the raid he is a very
    dangerous man and he has made some companies getting arrested before.
    Watch out for Peter Reynolds and CLEAR the biggest crooks in the Cannabis

  2. This is very worrying and similar stories are emerging in USA where Ohio State has banned the sale of OBD strains low in THC (< 0.3%) contrary to Federal law which permits the production and sale of medicinal cannabis strains in all States for licensing farmers and licensed medical dispensaries.

    The problem in the UK is the recently introduced Psychoactive Substances Act.

    This is a broad-scope blanket law that basically makes ANYTHING which has a psychoactive effect on the brain illegal unless the government whitelists it and says otherwise.

    There is a loop-hole which says if a substance has a legitimate established history of use as a food (i.e. chocolate) or is proven to have legitimate health use in humans (i.e. St John's Wort) and no harmful effects it can be legally sold (subject to MHRA restrictions and licensing for items being marketed as herbal medicines or supplements).

    OBD hemp flower definitely has some effect on the brain as we know it activates certain receptor sites so it seem to me to definitely fall under the Psychoactive Substances Act as it's no history of it being widely used as a herbal medicine in the West.

    It is most likely a prohibited psychoactive substance and people should be cautious until there's a landmark court ruling. At best it could be argued it's a herbal medicine with a history of legitimate use (although there is limited evidence supporting that). Even so would, that would definitely require licensing in the UK (each individual batch/product) by the MHRA and strict guidelines on marketing if you make any medical or health claims about it.

    The EU has ruined our natural health supplements industry, even plants like St John's Wort and Valerian with 1,000's of years of use as a natural medicine in UK have now been restricted and high licensing costs means the EU/UK have granted a virtual monopoly on herbal remedies to a 1 or 2 big manufacturers in the UK who supply most labels.

    This sucks I know. I'm not knocking CBD sellers I want this to be available to everyone as a medicine. But I want people to be clear about the law and avoid getting fined or worse.

    The old tactic head shops used of marketing legal highs and what not, with no health claims and notices saying 'not for human consumption' will no longer work under the Psychoactive Substances Act.

    This law just makes possession with intent to sell or marketing it for sale, a criminal offence in the UK.

  3. “Mr Moore of THCfreeweed went on to say: “We have never in the past year had any confusion over the legality of these products. The law is very clear. CBD is legal, in any format. Isolated format, flowers, CBD oil, CBD tea, CBD Coffee, CBD e-liquids.”

    Can they cite some law or have a letter from a solicitor confirming this? Or is this just a layman interpreting the law?

    “The tolerances of THC allowed in products is up to and not over 1% THC to be considered legal. This is considered trace amounts and will not cause any psychoactive effects.”

    This interpretation seems to me to be entirely at odds with the law. Both the Psychoactive Substances Act, and legislation governing the production, sale and legal requirement for licensing of any substances (natural or otherwise) which are intended for use as a medicinal product.

    This falls under the remit of the MHRA which has legal power to prosecute people who sell unlicensed medicines or make claims about natural plant medicines which are unsubstantiated and not backed by clinical trials.

    It’s definitely illegal under current MHRA enforced legislation to market any medicine (even pharma drugs, let alone natural plants) and make specific health claims in your advertising or marketing that are not supported by medical science. You also need a license from MHRA and the scientific studies backing any health complaint treatment claims unless you keep it broad. The licenses are restrictive because they only give you a license for specific health treatments, the more claims you make, the more expensive and difficult to get a license becomes.

    I know because I was involved in the health supplements industry (and forced out of it) by the EU legislation ratified into UK law which basically destroyed our entire industry a few years back.

    It seems to me, the CBD industry is going down the same path. It’s exploding and it’s like a wild frontier, with all kinds of sellers, large and small making tons of health claims like CBD can be used to treat a range of mental health problems such as depression, anxiety, PTSD, OCD and also many physical illness claims are being made such as pain relief, MS and cancer treatment, chronic fatigue etc etc.

    Whilst many people may indeed find relief from CBD for these conditions, there’s been very limited clinical trials (and none in humans?) supporting this in the UK. So the legal position is clear. These claims are illegal. And the CBD flower (and all other products containing psychoactive cannabinoids) are not legal for sale as a food or medicine.

    I think people selling this stuff would be wise to avoid attracting attention for now at least. Do it low-key, (use the darknet) until such time as the industry is big enough and organised enough to take on the government.

    In the US, the industry is much larger and more organised for CBD and they are legally challenging the Ohio State decision last week to ban OBD sale and arrest CBD sellers. In the US their laws are far more tolerant of cannabis (even high THC strains) for legitimate medical use if licensed, and if prescribed by a doctor.

    We have to remember that in the UK cannabis is still a class B drug and the line between what is a class B drug and what is hemp by-product is a fine line. Some of the CBD flowers people are selling (even on eBay look exactly like cannabis class B) and probably aren’t really batch lab tested for THC content which although probably very low if the government finds *any* in seized material you could be in serious trouble for class B drug selling.

    Not trying to scare people, just be sensible and stay safe. Why sell this stuff on the open internet when you can setup a parallel store on the darknet linked to your main store (your main internet stores can contain the info on CBD health uses and strains, that’s not illegal), then just do the sale transactions on darkness (maybe peer to peer using IP2) with Bitcoins and no lead back to your store. Totally anonymous and safe for vendors and customers.

    The MHRA has Not Banned CBD or Canabidol™ Products, find out why……
    MHRA statement on products containing Cannabidiol (CBD)

    An MHRA spokesperson said:

    Our primary concern is patient safety and we wish to reiterate that individuals using cannabidiol (CBD) products to treat or manage the symptoms of medical conditions should discuss their treatment with their doctor.

    MHRA will now work with individual companies and trade bodies in relation to making sure products containing CBD, used for a medical purpose, which can be classified as medicines, satisfy the legal requirements of the Human Medicines Regulations 2012.

    MHRA reclassification of CBD as a medicine hits UK

    Do a search about it and don’t use google use

  5. As the other posters have noted this has the grubby fingerprints of the CTA all over it.
    Nothing more than a sinister protection racket wanting to control people in the UK who need medicine

  6. wow , I really hope they sue the cops and get at least 10k in return. CBD has helped so many people I know around me and by the way something similar happened here in Ireland in a town called waterford a shop selling CBD buds was raided TWICE, imagine that? They are trying to get rid of natural healing methods to keep the pharma companies rich is what I think.

    1. “They are trying to get rid of natural healing methods to keep the pharma companies rich is what I think.”
      I think so too. This medicine really relieves pain. I myself used this when restoring my knee after an accident. I believe that I made the optimal choice as a quick dependence on standard postoperative painkillers is a proven fact. I want to be able to choose, that’s all ..

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