By Steve Elliott
A new lawsuit has been filed against the City of Bellingham, Washington by the Seattle-based medical marijuana advocacy group Cannabis Action Coalition, setting the stage for another battle over the legality of medicinal cannabis dispensaries.
The lawsuit, filed on July 15, challenges the Bellingham City council's unanimous July 1 vote to impose interim zoning restrictions on medical marijuana dispensaries by means of an "emergency" ordinance, reports John Stark at The Bellingham Herald.
One of those signing the lawsuit, filed in Whatcom County Superior Court, is Martin Nickerson, operator of the Northern Cross Collective downtown. Nickerson and two of his employees were arrested in March 2012, and are facing a November 12, 2013 criminal trial on several felony counts for alleged possession and sale of marijuana.
Nickerson and his lawyers have filed two previous lawsuits challenging the city's actions.
Five days after police raided Northern Cross in 2012, attorneys representing Northern Cross sought an injunction to block the city taking further action. Nickerson and his employees had gone to great lengths to keep the collective's activities within state law, according to the attorneys.