Court of Appeals Marijuana Decision Could Have Widespread Affect

According to a Colorado appeals court ruling some marijuana conviction can be overturned under the new marijuana law. The court of appeals recently held that some individuals who were convicted of possession of small amount of cannabis may be eligible to have their conviction thrown out under the new law that legalized the recreational use of marijuana in Colorado.

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Our marijuana defense lawyers believe courts throughout the nation are taking notice of how Colorado courts deal with issues like these as they arise.

The Court of Appeals in Colorado held that individual whose convictions were on appeal in December of 2012, when amendment 64 took effect, may be eligible to have their convictions reversed.

The attorney general’s office said that it would review the court of appeals opinion to see what actions it would take next.

Marijuana advocates hail the ruling as a positive step, saying it could affect a couple hundred people who were put in jail for possession of cannabis. Many advocates believe this decision is a sign that the legal community is beginning to take note of the growing public support for the decriminalization and legalization of marijuana.

Decisions such as this one have an important effect throughout the United States because as one of the first states to legalize recreational use, everyone is watching how it deals with the fallout.

Court decisions and reasoning in Colorado could influence the thinking of other courts in the country even though state court decisions in different states would not be legally binding elsewhere.

There are many tough questions that remain to be answered throughout the nation as many jurisdictions consider legalization of recreational use. Should prosecutors continue to pursue convictions after the drug has been legalized by voters? Should people convicted of marijuana possession or other related charges still have to pay fines levied against them when the drug was illegal? Do individuals have to admit to past marijuana convictions during a background check, and what happens if they don’t?

The facts of the case the court ruled on involved a woman who had been convicted of numerous drug related charges. One of her charges was for possession of approximately one third of an ounce of cannabis.

Amendment 64 decriminalized the possession of any amount of marijuana under an ounce. The judges expressed a desire to follow the will of the people who voted and approved of Amendment 64.

The state of Colorado legalized marijuana two years ago but did not allow the substance to be commercially sold until the start of 2014. State officials claim that Colorado made approximately $2 million in cannabis taxes in the first month of the year. This revenue was generated by about $14 million in recreational marijuana sales by 59 businesses.

The Los Angeles CANNABIS LAW Group represents growers, dispensaries, collectives, patients and those facing marijuana charges. Call us at 714-937-2050.

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Dispensaries Face Obstacles to Serve Young Medical Marijuana Patients, February 17, 2014, Los Angeles Marijuana Lawyer Blog