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  1. Terrapinzflyer
    Santa Cruz pot group drops lawsuit vs. feds

    SANTA CRUZ -- A Santa Cruz medical marijuana collective that was raided by federal agents in 2002 dropped its lawsuit against the government Friday, citing the Obama administration's new policy of non-interference with pot suppliers who follow state law.

    "The policy provides lawful medical marijuana patients and providers a very welcome, if incomplete, measure of security," said Allen Hopper, an American Civil Liberties Union lawyer representing the Wo/Men's Alliance for Medical Marijuana.

    The organization, which says it provides free marijuana to terminally ill patients, sued after Drug Enforcement Administration agents seized its plants in 2002. Santa Cruz city and county governments later joined as plaintiffs.

    Federal authorities cited U.S. Supreme Court rulings allowing agents to prosecute suppliers under federal drug laws, despite California's 1996 initiative that allowed individuals to grow and use marijuana with a doctor's approval.

    U.S. District Judge Jeremy Fogel refused to dismiss the suit in 2008. He said the collective and local officials may be able to show that the federal government was trying to force California to repeal its law in violation of the state's constitutional authority, an allegation the government denied.

    In October, the Justice Department told federal prosecutors in California and other states with medical marijuana laws that they should refrain from charging anyone who was clearly following state law. The memo left room for interpretation by U.S. attorneys, but Hopper said it should give his clients the protection they sought.

    The settlement allows the collective to reinstate its suit if the government changes its policy.



    Bob Egelko, Chronicle Staff Writer
    Saturday, January 23, 2010

    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2010/01/22/BAJT1BM7IM.DTL&tsp=1


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    Wo/Mens is one of the true gems of the medical marijuana movement. An earlier story on a documentary in the works on them here

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