Federal appeals court refuses to dismiss the federal cannabis lawsuit. – Mike Hiller, Esq. – May 30, 2019
I just came across this and I’m not sure if this applies to our situation with opioids, but I’m delighted to see this challenge to the misbegotten Controlled Substances Act, which was passed and signed into law in 1970, almost half a century ago.
In a groundbreaking decision, the United States Second Circuit Court of Appeals became the first Court to refuse to dismiss a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the Controlled Substances Act.
Hurray, a judge finally comes to a rational decision!
Quoting language from the historic Brown v. Board of Education case, the Court in Washington v. Barr ruled that the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is required, with all “deliberate speed” to consider a petition by Plaintiffs to de-schedule Cannabis, which could legalize it nationwide (at least under Federal law).
The “schedules” for controlled substances (drugs) that the DEA set up without medical expertise has long been obvious nonsense.
That Cannabis was classified as a Schedule 1 substance is incomprehensible (as is much of what the DEA decides).
From Wikipedia: Schedule I substances are described as those that have the following findings:
- The drug or other substance has a high potential for abuse.
- The drug or other substance has no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States.
- There is a lack of accepted safety for use of the drug or other substance under medical supervision
A rational person would see that these properties do not apply to cannabis.
The Washington v. Barr case,filed in July 2017 ,has attracted national attention, as advocates have lined up behind the Plaintiffs who have argued that the classification of Cannabis as a Schedule I substance is unconstitutionally irrational, and violates
- the Equal Protection Clause,
- the Commerce Clause,
- Substantive Due Process,
- the Right to Preserve One’s Health and Life, and
- the Rights to Free Speech and Travel.
Michael Hiller, a Manhattan-based attorney whose firm, Hiller, PC, has been representing the Plaintiffs pro bono since the case started, was elated at the news of the Court’s decision, saying
“For decades, people have been observing ‘4/20 Day’ on Apn 20th to celebrate the possibilities of legalized cannabis. Now, we can also celebrate `5/30 Day’ as the moment the Courts began to use the power of the judiciary to force a rational conclusion on the Issue of legalization.
Cannabis is a harmless plant that, when properly grown and extracted,provides exceptional wellness benefits, and laws criminalizing it violate the US Constitution”
Joseph Bondy, pro-bono co-counsel on the case, stated that
“today’s decision confirms that the fight goes on, and Plaintiffs and their lawyers won’t stop until Cannabis is de-scheduled.”
The legal team expects the DEA petition to be filed within the next 30-60 days.
Contact: Michael Hiller (212) 319-4000 Joseph A Bondy (040) 335-3980