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Federal Judge Says #1 Marijuana Dispensary Can Stay Open

Posted on  January 22, 2013 by  News Admin

 Chief Federal Magistrate Maria-Elena James on Monday ruled in favor of Harborside Health Center, which describes itself as the biggest nonprofit medical marijuana dispensary in the United States, and denied motions by Harborside's landlords asking the court to order an immediate halt to the sales of medicinal cannabis at their properties. Judge James also declined to grant a motion from the City of Oakland to immediately halt the federal government's legal efforts to close Harborside, but scheduled a hearing later this month to hear more arguments in the City of Oakland's lawsuit against the Feds in a 17-page opinion [PDF] described by Harborside as "highly significant." "We are grateful that Judge James carefully considered the facts and arguments in the Harborside case, and decided to grant us our day in court," said Harborside Health Center Executive Director Steve DeAngelo. "We have always believed that a Bay Area jury will recognize the value that Harborside brings to the community, and refuse to allow the federal government to seize the properties where we are located. "We look forward to proving our case in front of a jury, and continue to believe we will prevail," DeAngelo said. "In the meantime, we ask the Department of Justice to immediately freeze enforcement actions against Harborside and any other cannabis providers acting in full compliance with state law. "Our nation's law enforcement officers should concentrate on real crime," DeAngelo said. In addition, the court found that entering injunctions against Harborside would not be an appropriate means...

Federal Judge Says #1 Marijuana Dispensary Can Stay Open

Posted on  January 09, 2013 by  News Admin

 Chief Federal Magistrate Maria-Elena James on Monday ruled in favor of Harborside Health Center, which describes itself as the biggest nonprofit medical marijuana dispensary in the United States, and denied motions by Harborside's landlords asking the court to order an immediate halt to the sales of medicinal cannabis at their properties. Judge James also declined to grant a motion from the City of Oakland to immediately halt the federal government's legal efforts to close Harborside, but scheduled a hearing later this month to hear more arguments in the City of Oakland's lawsuit against the Feds in a 17-page opinion [PDF] described by Harborside as "highly significant." "We are grateful that Judge James carefully considered the facts and arguments in the Harborside case, and decided to grant us our day in court," said Harborside Health Center Executive Director Steve DeAngelo. "We have always believed that a Bay Area jury will recognize the value that Harborside brings to the community, and refuse to allow the federal government to seize the properties where we are located. "We look forward to proving our case in front of a jury, and continue to believe we will prevail," DeAngelo said. "In the meantime, we ask the Department of Justice to immediately freeze enforcement actions against Harborside and any other cannabis providers acting in full compliance with state law. "Our nation's law enforcement officers should concentrate on real crime," DeAngelo said. In addition, the court found that entering injunctions against Harborside would not be an appropriate means...

Federal Judge Calls For Marijuana Legalization

Posted on  September 07, 2012 by  News Admin

 Most-Cited Judge In America Criticizes Drug War As 'Absurd' A widely respected federal judge called for the legalization of marijuana in a lecture at Elmhurst College in Illinois on Thursday. Judge Richard A. Posner of the influential Seventh U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago "is an intellectual giant who is the most-cited judge in America," reports Larry Bodine at Lawyers.com. "His call for legalization is considered significant because Posner is considered a legal conservative," Bodine wrote. "I don't think we should have a fraction of the drug laws that we have," Posner said. "I think it's really absurd to be criminalizing possession or use or distribution of marijuana. I can't see any difference between that and cigarettes." The Elmhurst College audience applauded Judge Posner's remarks. Posner, who was called a "genius" by Judge William J. Bauer by way of introducing him, has written hundreds of court opinions and 40 books. Entire classes at law schools are devoted to his legal rulings. A Reagan appointee, he attended Yale College, was valedictorian of his class at Harvard Law School and started his career as a clerk for the U.S. Supreme Court. Judge Posner said he was also skeptical about laws regarding other drugs besides cannabis. "The notion of using the criminal law as the primary means of dealing with a problem of addiction, of misuse, of ingesting dangerous drugs -- I don't think that's sensible at all," Posner said. According to Posner, drug laws are "responsible for a high percentage of...