THE HAGUE, Netherlands — A court has fined the owner of what was the biggest marijuana-selling “coffee shop” in the Netherlands almost euro10 million ($13.34 million) for violating liberal Dutch drug laws, in what is seen as a test for authorities seeking to rein in the growth of such cafes. The owner and 15 staff of Checkpoint coffee shop in the town of Terneuzen close to the Belgian border have been convicted by Middelburg District Court for offenses including keeping more than the maximum tolerated amount of 500 grams (18 ounces)of drugs in stock at the cafe.
The coffee shop has since closed. At its height, it reportedly served 3,000 clients a day.
The court also criticized local authorities Thursday for allowing the coffee shop to grow so large.