Category: Medical Marijuana
| Posted on Fri, February, 1st 2013 by THCFinder
SAN FRANCISCO -- The city of Oakland's arguments for why it should be allowed to challenge a federal attempt to shut down the nation's largest medical marijuana dispensary are simply "window dressing" that ignores the law, a federal prosecutor said in court Thursday.
U.S. Department of Justice attorney Kathryn Wyer argued that attorneys representing the city are attempting to sidestep federal drug and forfeiture laws by suing the government over its decision to seek to confiscate a building operated by Harborside Medical Center.
Wyer's comments came in the courtroom of Magistrate Judge Maria-Elena James who will decide if Oakland has the right to continue its lawsuit against U.S. Attorney General Eric
Clone marijuana plants that are for sale are photographed at Harborside Health Center on Thursday, July 12, 2012 in Oakland, Calif. (Aric Crabb/Staff Archives)
Oakland attorneys, led by Cedric Chao, an outside hired attorney, have claimed that the city has the right to argue against the federal actions because closing Harborside would cause great harm to the city residents' public safety and health.
In addition, the city has said the federal government's decision to close down Harborside after allowing it to operate for about six years violates federal statute of limitations.
Oakland sued the federal government three months after the office of U.S. Attorney Melinda Haag filed a civil forfeiture action against Harborside's landlord citing the federal Controlled Substance Act, a law that allows governments to take properties used in the sale of illegal drugs.
Since the federal government has refused to recognize marijuana's medical purposes, all sales of the drug, even if allowed under state law, are illegal under federal law.
In it's lawsuit against the federal government, Oakland argued that it had no other legal recourse but to file a suit in an attempt to stop the forfeiture. The city also said it had a right to sue because the federal government's action would severely harm the city socially, criminally and financially.