Cannabis store owners deal in fear-filled cash-only business

LOS ANGELES — Jerred Kiloh’s eyes narrowed as he checked his mirror again. The black Chevy SUV with tinted windows was still behind him.

It had been hanging off Kiloh’s bumper ever since he nosed out of the parking lot behind his medical-marijuana dispensary with $40,131.88 in cash in the trunk of his hatchback.

Kiloh was unarmed, on his way to City Hall to make a monthly tax payment, and managing only stop-and-start progress in the midday traffic. He was afraid of one thing above all else: getting robbed.

That fear is a constant part of doing business in California’s flourishing medical cannabis industry, in which transactions are conducted mostly in cash, sometimes in stunningly large amounts.

“The thing I need the least right now is to have to go through any sort of money disappearing,” Kiloh said.

On Jan. 1, recreational pot will become legal in California, creating what could be the world’s largest legitimate marijuana economy. It comes more than two decades…

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