Judge Clears Crackdown on Oakland Medical Pot Shop
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Judge Clears Crackdown on Oakland Medical Pot Shop
Posted by CN Staff on February 14, 2013 at 17:45:00 PT
By Reuters
Source: Reuters
San Francisco -- A judge paved the way on Thursday for federal authorities to seek the closure of a medical marijuana dispensary in California, dismissing a challenge by the city of Oakland to a federal crackdown targeting the facility, court papers showed. But the executive director of the Harborside Health Center pledged that he would not close the Oakland outfit that bills itself as the world's largest medical pot dispensary and was featured in the Discovery Channel television series "Weed Wars."
Magistrate Judge Maria-Elena James wrote in a 10-page ruling that a local U.S. attorney had successfully argued the federal government was immune from Oakland's lawsuit under the Administrative Procedures Act, which sets out how U.S. agencies develop and issue regulations. California is one of 18 states which, in addition to the District of Columbia, allow medical marijuana. But the federal government holds the drug is illegal and liable to be abused. A representative for the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of California declined to comment on the ruling. Oakland, in a novel lawsuit filed in October, sought to halt federal prosecutors' efforts to shutter Harborside. The dispensary was expected to generate an estimated $1.4 million in sales tax revenues for the city this year. Federal prosecutors in 2012 filed civil actions in federal court seeking to seize the properties for Harborside's locations in Oakland and San Jose, and terminate the dispensary's leases with the landlord for each site, said Harborside's attorney Henry Wykowski. James, the judge who dismissed the Oakland lawsuit on Thursday, is also overseeing those two civil actions. She had put those cases on hold until the Oakland lawsuit could be resolved, but Wykowski said he expects the cases to move forward and that two separate San Francisco juries will decide them. The juries will get those cases late this year or in early 2014, he said. Wykowki added that he expects juries in San Francisco, a predominately liberal city, would "allow Harborside to remain open and conduct its business consistent with the mandate of the voters of California to legalize medical cannabis." "I think that the U.S. Department of Justice is out of touch with the will of the American people with regards to the legalization of medical cannabis," he said. Harborside officials say they serve over 100,000 patients. "We are, of course, disappointed in today's ruling," Steve DeAngelo, executive director of Harborside, said in a statement. "But the message of Oakland's lawsuit remains powerful and relevant: The City Council and mayor have determined that if Harborside Health Center is closed, the entire city will be harmed," he said. Reporting by Ronnie Cohen, Writing by Alex Dobuzinskis; Editing by Cynthia Johnston and David GregorioSource: Reuters (Wire)Published: February 14, 2013Copyright: 2013 Thomson ReutersCannabisNews  Medical Marijuana Archives 
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Comment #6 posted by FoM on February 16, 2013 at 09:21:28 PT
John Tyler
I agree. 
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Comment #5 posted by ekim on February 16, 2013 at 08:29:59 PT
         CNN investigative journalism
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Comment #4 posted by John Tyler on February 16, 2013 at 07:59:54 PT
full legalization now!
I agree. The only way to clear up all of the messy cannabis issues is full legalization for the cannabis industry.
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #3 posted by fight_4_freedom on February 15, 2013 at 22:21:57 PT
Like the way yyou put that 
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Comment #2 posted by FoM on February 14, 2013 at 19:57:16 PT
Absolutely right.
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #1 posted by kaptinemo on February 14, 2013 at 19:20:15 PT:
The routes are being closed off, one at a time
There's only one left: legal cannabis for ALL.No more games, no more legal sophistries. No more 'arrested (no pun intended) development'. No more stalled evolution. One after another, the gates are closing, leaving only one path left open. It's freedom for all, or none are free. As many reformers said as far back as the mid-1990's, with the passage of the Props, that the idea was to get the sick and wounded off the battlefield, so that they wouldn't be hurt, anymore, while the REAL battle went on to victory for ALL cannabists.And now, that's exactly what must happen. MUST happen. BECAUSE WE HAVE NO CHOICE, NOW. AND IN TRUTH, WE NEVER REALLY DIDLegalization is the equivalent of a machinegun loaded with garlic juice-tipped, silver hollow-point bullets, dipped in holy water, with a crucifix stamped on the butt of the round...and when that weapon was pointed at the Fed Vampires in WA and CO, the previously irresistible bloodsuckers pulled up short real quick and STOPPED IN THEIR TRACKS.I'm no artist, but I shouldn't have to draw you a picture, anyway. How much plainer does it have to be? It really, truly is all...or nothing. 
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