Politics

January 15, 2014

Appeals court says federal government has a right to crack down on California pot dispensaries

An appellate court on Wednesday upheld three lower court decisions, including one in Sacramento, rejecting a challenge by medical marijuana dispensaries, their landlords and customers to enforcement of the federal government's zero tolerance of marijuana.

An appellate court on Wednesday upheld three lower court decisions, including one in Sacramento, rejecting a challenge by medical marijuana dispensaries, their landlords and customers to enforcement of the federal government's zero tolerance of marijuana.

Dispensaries sought injunctions to prevent authorities from enforcing the federal Controlled Substances Act against dispensaries and collectives operating under the terms of California's Compassionate Use Act, which allows marijuana to be used as medicine in accord with a physician's recommendation.

In an unpublished order, a three-judge panel of the 9th U. S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that those parts of the U. S. Constitution cited by the dispensaries do not apply in a matter such as this, and cited a 2007 9th Circuit opinion as precedent.

An injunction "would compromise a governmental interest in enforcing the law" and would therefore be inappropriate, the panel's memorandum concluded.

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