In a historic move, U.S. District Judge Charles Breyer ruled to protect those medical marijuana dispensaries which operate in accordance with state law. A rider attached to the omnibus spending bill, passed by Congress in 2014, withdrew permission for the department of justice to spend federal funds to raid lawfully operating medical marijuana dispensaries.
This is the first ruling to defend marijuana dispensaries under an amendment approved through Congress, and therefore it is huge news for those in the legal medical cannabis industry. Although the spending bill was approved in 2014, the department of justice was still ignoring the new law by continuing to raid dispensaries until at least April 2015.
“It defies language and logic for the government to argue that it does not prevent California from implementing its medical marijuana laws by shutting down these … heavily regulated medical marijuana dispensaries,”
Judge Breyer said.
While many argue that closing down one or more dispensaries will not prevent the growth of the medical marijuana industry in California, the San Francisco judge claims the evidence that medical marijuana supplies in general have been substantially impeded by the closing of dispensaries.
In 1996, with the approval of Proposition 215, California became the first to legalize medical marijuana, and now new laws regulating the industry were just approved in the Golden State.