California dispensary ruling ‘great’ for marijuana industry

A federal judge in San Francisco has tossed out the last remaining forfeiture action filed against a medical marijuana business in California.

The action, filed against Berkeley Patients Group three years ago by the U.S. attorney’s office in Northern California, was dismissed with prejudice on Tuesday, said BPG’s attorney, Henry Wykowski.

That means the DOJ will not be able to bring the case again, which equates to total victory for the dispensary.

“This is good for BPG, but significantly overall this means we have now successfully concluded all four of the forfeiture actions that were filed by the U.S. attorney in Northern California,” Wykowski said. “And as far as I know, there are no coming forfeiture actions against the cannabis industry anywhere in the United States.”

Wykowski was also the lead attorney on the other three cases, two of which were filed against Harborside Health Center and another against Shambhala Healing Center. The Harborside case was dropped in May, and the Shambhala case was dismissed in 2014.

For a period, many believed the DOJ would be successful in running the entire medical marijuana industry out of business by using asset-forfeiture tactics.

“This is great. You’ve got to go back to four years ago when everyone thought this was the end of the cannabis industry,” Wykowski said. “And we fought back and we won.”

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2 comments on “California dispensary ruling ‘great’ for marijuana industry
  1. Ned Frisius on

    CONGRATULATIONS to Henry Wykowski and his team!!! A lot of positive momentum has occurred in the cannabis business landscape over the past 24 months. I finally believe that with elections results next Tuesday, the cannabis industry will have reached a “must be legally accept”, irreversible tipping point, and that a true period of “safe-haven” for the business sector is being realized – soon to be nationalized. Regarding this proclamation, I know that it is a widely shared sentiment that is summed up in the expression “from my lips to God’s ears” that such safe-haven attitudes turn into realities. With the support of professionals like Henry Wykowski, the future may include forgiveness of historically alleged IRC 280E liabilities (possibly even providing the right to amend prior tax returns to reflect normal business operations deductions) , as well as, the end of the ongoing interference by assorted federal agency based upon anti-cannabis sentiment and antiquated federal laws. I am Ned Frisius, and I happily approve this message!

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