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A Better Partnership
September 11, 2013

COA reinstates pot charges against operators of dispensary, applies MMMA retroactively

The Court of Appeals reversed and reinstated marijuana conspiracy charges against multiple individuals who operated a medical marijuana dispensary in Ferndale. The seven defendants committed the acts in question prior to any published decisions on application of the MMMA, particularly the McQueen case specifically holding that dispensaries were not protected.  In its consolidated per curiam opinion here in People v. Johnson, the panel held that interpretation of the notoriously ambiguous MMMA would be applied retroactively, and not only prospectively as defendants argued.    The panel held that the defendants did not argue or attempt to establish that they were entitled to any of the protections from prosecution afforded by the act, and were thus bound to follow the general presumption of illegality in dealing marijuana.

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