Cannabis Reg. Update: Supreme Court Judge Bans Smokable Hemp In TX, Kansas Officials Sued Over $120K Worth Product Seizure & More

Texas Supreme Court Prohibits Sales & Production Of Smokable Hemp

Texas Supreme Court Judge Jeffrey S. Boyd reminded Texans that smokable hemp is still banned as the legal battle that included four smokable hemp companies - Crown Distributing, America Juice Co., Custom Botanical Dispensary, and 1937 Apothecary - and the Texas Supreme Court came to an end, High Times writes.

“Considering the long history of the state’s extensive efforts to prohibit and regulate the production, possession, and use of the Cannabis sativa L. plant, we conclude that the manufacture and processing of smokable hemp products is neither a liberty interest nor a vested property interest the due-course clause protects,” Boyd wrote in his opinion earlier this month.

Texas Supreme Court prohibited smokable hemp in 2019. Travis County District Court challenged and overturned that decision two years later. In December 2021 the Texas Supreme Court agreed to hear the case.

Kansas Officials Sued Over $120K Worth Product Seizure

Kansas-based Murray Dines, who owns Terpene Distribution and Guardian Cannabis THC Recreational Dispensary, filed a lawsuit in federal court on Friday against state’s AG Derek Schmidt and Gov. Laura Kelly.

Dines said that law enforcement had seized $120 000 worth of property and cash after his merchandise was classified as a Schedule I drug last year, as first reported by Law360.

In his lawsuit, Dines claims that Schmidt made a mistake last December when he said in an issued opinion that delta-8 THC products are illegal controlled substances, even if made from hemp.

He emphasized that states are “not authorized to alter the definition of hemp,” under the federal law which makes products derived from legal hemp extracts legal.

Michigan Recall Debacle Revisited, Here’s What We Know For Now

Some seven months after last year’s 64,000-pound cannabis recallwhich included all products tested by Viridis Laboratories and Viridis North between Aug. 10 and Nov. 16, the dust around the case doesn't seem to be settling. The recall impacted merchandise sold at more than 400 stores across the state and cost the industry nearly $230 million.

Todd W. Welch, COO and founder of Viridis Laboratories sent an email recently addressing the issue. In it, he highlighted that “CRA allegations against Viridis are from last August and continue to be baseless, meritless and totally detached from science, facts, and data,” High Times writes.

“Court-ordered proficiency test results that Viridis is in possession of, which the CRA had been withholding, will directly contradict these findings, and we’re confident the truth will prevail when all facts come to light,” the statement said. “We hope these legal proceedings will pave the way for more transparency, accountability, and reforms at the CRA.”

The Recall Debacle

In December, after more than a month's court battle between the state's Cannabis Regulatory Agency (formerly called Marijuana Regulatory Agency ) and Viridis, the Court of Claims denied the agency’s request to reinstate a recall of contaminated products.

In February, following reports from CRA agents that they'd been instructed to ignore illicit cannabis discovered at licensed facilities, Senator Aric Nesbitt questioned the agency and its management.

“I think it was poorly communicated to your licensees and it didn’t seem like you had thought through the impact on the wider marketplace before acting on the recall, and I thought it was very poorly done and very clumsy in the implementation of the recall,” Nesbitt said at a Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Licensing and Regulatory Affairs/Insurance and Financial Services.

In May the CRA once again questioned the accuracy of Viridis’s THC test results, filing formal complaints.

Indonesia’s Government To Review Marijuana Ban

Indonesia is poised to revisit the issue of the cannabis ban, reported Jakarta Globe.

The country’s government clarified its plan to allow marijuana for medical purposes.

"The government will first study the legality of marijuana for medical purposes. We will see the pros and cons," said Tubagus Erif Faturahman, the head of public relations at the Ministry of Law and Human Rights. "If there are indeed many positives, the government will certainly legalize marijuana for medical use. That too with strict mechanisms and regulations to avoid [misuses]."

Currently, both medical and recreational use of cannabis is prohibited in Indonesia.

House Committee Lawmakers Address Cannabis Research  & Impaired Driving In New Spending Bill Reports

After a House Appropriations subcommittee approved an amendment on Tuesday afternoon that would prevent the Department of Justice (DOJ) from interfering with legal adult-use marijuana programs as part of the Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies appropriations legislation, the lawmakers released additional spending bill reports related to other marijuana issues.

The reports cover financing for the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services (HHS), Education, Transportation and Interior for the 2023 Fiscal Year, focusing on barriers related to cannabis research as well as impaired driving and curbing marijuana use among youth and pregnant people.

During a House Appropriations Committee on Tuesday, members passed an amendment that seeks to remove a federal funding cap to reimburse local and state police departments which participate in the illegal marijuana eradication program.

GrowLab Organics Gets First Medical Marijuana License On The Isle Of Man

GrowLab Organics can now grow, extract, produce, import and export medical cannabis products on the Isle of Man, a self-governing British Crown Dependency, reported BBC.

Alex Fray, the company’s chief executive said the industry had the "capability to transform the quality of life."

The firm is expected to create more than 50 jobs in the years to come, Fray said.

"The emerging cannabis sector is potentially the most exciting global development of this generation and has the capability to transform the quality of life for millions of people.”

Enterprise Minister Tim Crookall expects the move will propel "high-value economic diversification" while providing jobs and "encourage inward investment."

Benzinga photo. Source: Image from Shutterstock

Posted In: CannabisGovernmentNewsRegulationsPoliticsLegalMarketsGeneralbillIndonesiaJeffrey S. BoydLaura Kellymarijuana legalizationMurray DinesregulatorySmokable HempTodd W. Welch

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