Montana Buds is a typical story in the Canabis industry, it is a story of great intentions and great beginnings. Montana Buds was started by two brothers Adam and Charlton (Chuck) Campbell. Chuck ran the front of the house while Adam ran operations the system worked well for several years and the company came to dominate the Montana market with well over 20% of the states medical market and a level of quality and variety of products that was unrivaled anywhere in the country. Not even California or Colorado dispensaries provided the level of quality or variety that Montana Buds provided to their patients and it was all done in-house by the amazing team that Adam put together to grow and manufacture products! But as in all tragedies this story had a dark side.
The dark side came from the greed and corruption of Chuck Campbell and his wife Elsa. As revenue grew the two of them started stealing from the company and descended into a party lifestyle similar to what we see with Dan Brazilian of ignite. Chuck became a full on drug addicted and alcoholic as his party lifestyle started when he got out of bed. He started to see company revenue as his personal piggy bank to fund his addictions and a unlimited supply of girls. The drugs and alcohol made him larger than life around town as his arrogance made him feel invincible, but instead it brought the wrong kind of attention the kind no medical marijuana operation needs!
Eventually all this came to a head when the head office was raided by the DEA and the Missouri River Task Force in 2016, here’s where the real tragedy starts. At the time three arrests were made Chuck Campbell, Mike Mason and Dave Maples. Mike ran the main dispensary and Dave ran the kitchen/compounding departments both were employees of Montana Buds and had no ownership of the company! Chuck immediately hired three lawyers and told everyone that they were covered he had this under control. Here is where the real criminal and delusional caricature of Chuck and Elsa Campbell came to light!
The two of them immediately started “cooperating” with the DEA they turned on their employees and testified against Mike Mason,Dave Maples and his brother Adam. The three lawyers hired were not for the three people arrested but all for Chuck to negotiate his deal as he turned against everyone who worked with him. When confronted in this his words “They can get public defenders” as he spun a tale of himself and Elsa just handling marketing and Mike Mason handled all the financial and compliance of operation. This was entirely a false representation! Chuck was entirely in charge of the books and distribution of products to the 11 stores throughout the state with the help of his wife Elsa.
Because of the testimony provided by Chuck and the expense and threat of long prison terms both Dave and Mike took plea deals for money laundering and manufacturing.
Chuck was far from done with his cooperation with the DEA he testified to the grand jury that he had nothing to do with the grow and processing of the products and his brother Adam was the person with sole authority over those operations. He made up stories of illegal activities that the back of the house was doing and testified to them at a grand jury hearing after he had signed a agreement to be a confidential informant for the DEA to reduce his jail time! After this testimony he was Released from federal prison after serving slightly over six months of a eighteen month sentence. He went on to set up several other players in the Montana marijuana industry. At this time he continues to cooperate with federal law enforcement as a part of his deal to keep his wife and himself out of jail.
Chuck Campbell is exactly the person TheBlacklist is here to expose he stole from his partners, used company funds to pay for a lavish lifestyle of alcohol, cocaine and whores. When all this came crashing down because of the huge target these actions created on his back he turned on his partners and friends to “save himself”. To this day Chuck continues to work as a informant for the Feds as the terms of his deal to stay out of prison.
As a result of his “cooperation” his brother Adam was arrested two and a half years after the raid based on Charlton Campbell’s manufactured and made up stories he testified to for a grand jury hearing. After extensive hearings his testimony and other evidence presented by the DEA was found to be of dubious nature and to have “significant questions as to admissibility”. However the court ruled that because Adam processed marijuana into oil for the manufacturing of tinctures, ointments and edibles and THC oil is not marijuana he is in violation of state law and guilty of “maintaining a drug manufacturing premises”. This case is currently under appeals and will be heard in the 9th District Court on August 31st 2020. This case is specifically based on the Federal courts contention that THC extracts including oil are not marijuana and are therefore not protected by state medical marijuana laws.
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