Category Archives: California Law

Medical marijuana collective and extraction defenses

SB 420 / Senate Bill 420 Cannabis collective defense;
AB266 / 243 Collective defense ends in 2019

SB 2679 Interim extraction licenses through 2019

Summary: In 2003 the California legislature (SB420) created a limited collective defense allowing patients to grow, furnish or sell medical marijuana to one another in HS 11362.775. In 2015, it amended the program (AB243), creating a legal licensing scheme and terminating that defense effective in 2019.

In 2008 the courts (People v Bergen) ruled that this defense does not apply to the use of chemical extraction in HS 11379. In 2016, the legislature (AB2679) amended to HS11362.775, adding a provision to allow local governments to license collectives to make chemical extracts.

Continue reading Medical marijuana collective and extraction defenses

BHO and chemical extraction of cannabinoids / concentrates

People v. Bergen: Medical use is not a defense against charge, use of chemical extraction to manufacture a controlled substance

Note: Because marijuana and extracts are in the controlled substance list, because the HS 11379.6(a) chemical extraction ban is a general intent offense and because the medical marijuana laws do not list a specific protection from the chemical extraction charge, there was no defense. In 2015 the legislature passed the Medical Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act creating a dual state and local license for this activity.

“We conclude that when, as here, the method used to extract the marijuana resin was by means of a chemical such as butane, section 11379.6(a) applies over the more general statute punishing marijuana cultivation, harvesting or processing.” Continue reading BHO and chemical extraction of cannabinoids / concentrates

Interviewed as expert on cannabis extracts

Concentrated: A new era for cannabis extracts in California

Chris Conrad, a cannabis legal expert and author of “The Newbies Guide to Cannabis & The Industry,” said the type of extraction can also produce what is commonly known as an “entourage effect” or “ensemble effect.”

“There is a combination of 100 plus molecules in marijuana that have this medical effect depending on how they interact with each other and the human body,” he said. “That’s what a lot of people think is so great about cannabis.”

Continue reading Interviewed as expert on cannabis extracts

Expunging criminal records, re-sentencing requests

Are you eligible for a sentence reduction under Prop. 64?

Click here for the form you need to fill out and file for dismissal and re sentencing. This should be taken to the same court where you were originally sentenced and filed with the same judge; if that judge is not available, the assignment court should send you to another court to handle this.

Are you eligible for expungement?

Depending on your particular situation, A California resident may have the following options:

If you were convicted of a misdemeanor and are still on probation, you may request early release from probation and file petition to have conviction dismissed. To do this, file a PC 1203.3 petition to have probation terminated early, and PC 1203.4 petition for expungement. Continue reading Expunging criminal records, re-sentencing requests

Medical marijuana optional during probation

People v Tilehkooh

Qualified medical use is allowed during probation: “The people of California and a growing number of other states have recently enacted compassionate use laws. Congress should consider the wisdom of accommodating the people of these states.” — Concurring opinion of Judge J. Morrison

Continue reading Medical marijuana optional during probation

Marijuana offender, CA drug registry

California Health and Safety Code 11590. (a) Except as provided in subdivisions (c) and (d), any person who is convicted in the State of California of any offense defined in Section 11350, 11351, 11351.5, 11352, 11353, 11353.5, 11353.7, 11354, 11355, 11357, 11358, 11359, 11360, 11361, 11363, 11366, 11366.5, 11366.6, 11368, 11378, 11378.5, 11379, 11379.5, 11379.6, 11380, 11380.5, 11383, or 11550, or subdivision (a) of Section 11377, or any person who is discharged or paroled Continue reading Marijuana offender, CA drug registry

Medical approvals may not expire

People v Windus

“[W]e see nothing in the statute that requires a patient to periodically renew a doctor’s recommendation regarding medical marijuana use. The statute does not provide, as the Attorney General asserts, that a recommendation “expires” after a certain period of time. As for Dr. Eidleman’s suggestion that appellant see him annually, there was no evidence appellant’s failure to do so invalidated the doctor’s medical marijuana recommendation.”

Continue reading Medical approvals may not expire

CA Penal Code: Demurrer


A demurrer is an alternative to pleading guilty, not guilty or no contest to a criminal charge. The distinction is that when you plead you make a tacit legal concession that there was a crime committed so, by pleading “not guilty” you are accepting that there was a crime but are contesting the facts (mainly that you committed the crime). A demurrer does the opposite; you admit that the facts are correct but argue that no crime was committed. In the case of marijuana in California, for example, you would argue that the defendant did grow or possess marijuana (cannabis) since the defendant has a medical marijuana approval, their cultivation or use was lawful and not a crime.

If you plead “not guilty” you have removed your ability to argue for the demurrer, even though your legal argument (medical marijuana defense) is still the same. But you can only demur at the arraignment. After that it is too late.

Click here for a model Prop 215 demurrer pleading to modify and file

Click here for a model SB 420 demurrer pleading to modify and file

Continue reading CA Penal Code: Demurrer

How much California cannabis can you grow without a license?

California businesses have three options currently: 1) SB 420 patient collective defense until 2019; 2) MCRSA medical marijuana licenses available in 2018; 3) AUMA (Prop. 64 nonmedical licenses available as provisional licenses now or with state licenses beginning in 2018.

California adults also have four choices as to how to legally grow marijuana for personal use or sharing without getting a state license. These gardens must be noncommercial and can be grown for nonmedical personal use and sharing or it can be following one of three medical marijuana protocols as discussed below.  Continue reading How much California cannabis can you grow without a license?