Sam Kamin, who joined the faculty at the Sturm College of Law in 1999 and is currently Professor of Law and Director of the Constitutional Rights and Remedies Program, is a leading expert on the regulation of marijuana. In 2012 he was appointed to Governor John Hickenlooper’s Task Force to Implement Amendment 64 and served on the ACLU of California’s blue ribbon panel to study marijuana legalization. In an Op-ed piece, he discusses a new threat to the cannabis industry, the use of the federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO).
He explains in detail a lawsuit that settled recently in which the owners of a hotel in Frisco, CO sued several businesses, including a dispensary’s accountant and its bonding firm:
If non-marijuana businesses know that they can be subject to lawsuits and negative publicity for doing something as innocuous as providing accounting services to a marijuana business, the pressure to stay away from those businesses will only increase. If the goal of those bringing these lawsuits is to make life difficult for the industry, the suits are already a success.
Kamin sees RICO, a federal issue, as a challenge similar to access to banking, with the potential to slow the growth of the legal cannabis industry.
Read “Op-ed: How racketeering lawsuits are successfully taking on legal marijuana”: http://www.thecannabist.co/2016/01/06/rico-racketeering-lawsuits-marijuana/46057/
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