US Chief Magistrate Judge Maria-Elena James dismissed the lawsuit filed by the City of Oakland against Attorney General Eric Holder and US Attorney Melinda Hagg.
The lawsuit was aimed at preventing the closure of the Harborside Health Center, also known as the “largest pot shop on the planet,” reports The Huffington Post.
Harborside’s executive director, Steve DeAngelo, stated of the ruling:
“We are, of course, disappointed in today’s ruling. In the meantime, Harborside will continue to provide our patients with the very best cannabis medicines we can find, in the safest and most beautiful environment we can create.”
The so-called world’s largest pot shop has two locations in California, notes The Examiner. They are located in Oakland and San Jose and service almost 108,000 patients. They sell about $20 million in products each year.
Those sales help them generate $3 million in local, state, and federal tax revenue per year. Attorneys for the City of Oakland argued in the lawsuit that closing Harborside Health Center would be detrimental to the health and well-being of many residents who depend on the Center for medical marijuana.
While some states allow medical marijuana dispensaries, they are still illegal under federal law. Proceedings to try and shut down the dispensary began last July, because the shop became too large of a business.
The shop has already won once in court on January 7. Judge James ruled in Harborside’s favor when she denied motions by the center’s landlords, which asked the judge to grant an immediate halt of cannabis sales at their properties.
James’ decision regarding the City of Oakland means, however, that the fight is not yet over for Harborside. But until the center gets its day in court against Holder and Hagg, it will remain open.
[Image via ShutterStock]
This story initially implied that the center was closing after the decision by Judge James. This is incorrect. The ruling simply means that the US government’s case against Harborside Health Center will continue.