Judge Denies Landlords' Effort to Shut Down Medical Marijuana Dispensary - NBC Bay Area

Judge Denies Landlords' Effort to Shut Down Medical Marijuana Dispensary

A federal judge sided with Harborside Health Center



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    People chat near the parking lot of the Harborside Health Center, Monday, Oct. 3, 2011, in Oakland, Calif. The Oakland medical marijuana dispensary that bills itself as the world's largest is scheduled to announce the results of a year-long Internal Revenue Service audit. Harborside Health Center, which is on pace to do $28 million in annual sales this year, is defending its practice of deducting millions in business expenses such as salaries and overhead. The IRS is evaluating if the deductions were allowed under a tax code provision dealing with �expenditures in connection with the illegal sale of drugs.� (AP Photo/Ben Margot)

    If Harborside Health Center will be shut down by federal officials, it won't be by a judge.

    The Oakland medical cannabis dispensary -- by repute the nation's largest -- won a judge's decision in federal court on Monday, according to reports.

    Judge Maria-Elena James dismissed an effort by the dispensary's landlords to shut down the dispensary. The dispensary has been the target of federal asset forfeiture proceedings since the summer. The landlords attempted to evict the dispensary in order to save their properties from federal Justice Department pressure.

    The judge ruled that the dispensary's landlords have "no right of action" under federal law to evict their tenants. Harborside has locations in Oakland and San Jose. Both have been targeted by U.S. Attorney for Northern California Melinda Haag.

    The city of Oakland has also moved to stop the federal government. A hearing on the city's suit is scheduled for Jan. 31.

    The city receives more than $1 million in tax revenue annually from Harborside.