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Medical Marijuana Suit Reaches Federal Court: 1st Time In 20 Years

Posted on  October 08, 2012 by  News Admin

  Audiotape of October 4 teleconference briefing with researchers, legal counsel and lawsuit plaintiff now available For the first time in nearly 20 years, a United States Court of Appeals is set to hear oral arguments in a lawsuit challenging the federal government's classification of marijuana as a dangerous drug with no medicinal value: Americans for Safe Access v. Drug Enforcement Administration. This historic case will force a federal court to finally review the scientific evidence regarding the therapeutic efficacy of marijuana. During a press briefing on Thursday, plaintiffs in the case, along with leading medical researchers and clinicians, spoke about the necessity of the federal government recognizing current scientific data supporting marijuana rescheduling. Marijuana, incredibly, is currently classified in the same category as heroin despite calls from scientists, medical professionals, and policy makers to reschedule marijuana for medical use. Under the Uniform Controlled Substances Act, Schedule I drugs, by definition, supposedly "have a high potential for abuse, have no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States, and there is a lack of accepted safety for use of the drug or other substance under medical supervision." Cannabis patients and advocates point to literally hundreds scientific studies which indicate marijuana has a broad range of medical applications, with more promising results coming in on almost a monthly basis. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit will hear opening arguments on the case the morning of October 16. "Medical marijuana patients are finally getting their day in court," said...

CA Supreme Court Throws Out Marijuana Dispensary Ban Case

Posted on  August 23, 2012 by  News Admin

  High Court prohibits municipalities from using Pack v. City of Long Beach to ban dispensaries The California Supreme Court dismissed review on Wednesday of an important appellate court ruling affecting medical marijuana dispensaries throughout the state. Specifically, the High Court threw out the controversial decision in Pack v. City of Long Beach, which previously held that federal law preempted some forms of dispensary regulations. The Pack decision has been used by several municipalities, including Los Angeles and Long Beach, to suspend or ban outright the distribution of medical marijuana. However, Wednesday's dismissal of the Pack decision throws into question the viability of such bans. "This is an important moment for medical marijuana patients in California," said Joe Elford, chief counsel with Americans for Safe Access (ASA), a medical marijuana advocacy organization. "The California Supreme Court has essentially pulled out the rug from under local officials who have used the Pack decision to deny access to medical marijuana for thousands of patients across the state." "Pack is now a dead letter and, because of the California Rules of Court (Rule 8.528), it is disingenuous for any public official to contend that the appellate decision is somehow reinstated," Elford said. The reasoning used to dismiss the Pack case was that after the California Supreme Court decided to review the appellate decision, the Long Beach City Council repealed and replaced the ordinance with an outright ban on dispensaries thereby making moot the issues before the court. In addition, the petitioners in Pack "have now abandoned their federal preemption argument...