On Tuesday, January 22, 2013 the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Washington D.C. Circuit ruled that marijuana will remain illegal for doctors to prescribe as medicine. The court agreed with lawyers from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) who argued that there are no "adequate and well-controlled" studies that document any medical benefits of marijuana use.
Currently marijuana is on the same list of addictive and otherwise harmful narcotics such as peyote, LSD and Ecstasy (although methamphetamine and heroin are not on the same list). The Coalition for Rescheduling Cannabis, which includes the ASA (Americans for Safe Access, the country's leading medical marijuana advocacy organization) have been trying for years now to remove marijuana from the government's list of addictive and harmful narcotics.
Joe Eford, the lead attorney for Americans for Safe Access argued that the court's findings, "To deny that sufficient evidence is lacking on the medical efficacy of marijuana is to ignore a mountain of well-documented studies that conclude otherwise." The Coalition for Rescheduling Cannabis and the ASA filed the original petition to have marijuana reclassified nine years. It took the DEA nine years to finally respond (see article:
http://blogs.ocweekly.com/navelgazing/2011/07/obama_says_marijuana_is_not_me.php) at which point they rejected the petition.
The ASA plans to appeal the ruling to the U.S. Supreme Court, but is also calling on both Congress and the President to unilaterally end the war on pot. Now that states like Colorado and Washington State have passed laws legalizing the recreational use of pot, Elford argued. "It's time for President Obama to change his harmful policy with regard to medical marijuana and treat this as a public health issue, something entirely within the capability and authority of the executive office."
Attorney Lauren J. Johnson has successfully represented clients accused of drug crimes, both possession and intent to sell for marijuana and other narcotics. If you or a loved one is facing a drug charge, please feel free to contact our office for a free, private consultation.