Aug 152014
 August 15, 2014

Gavel marijuana miami prosecutorA medical marijuana dispensary owner in Washington was suing the State of Washington over a tax dispute. The Washington Revenue Department was going after the dispensary owner for not collecting taxes on his marijuana sales. The man then sued the State of Washington in federal court arguing that he couldn’t collect taxes because it would incriminate him, leading to potential criminal charges.

Per King 5, the federal judged dismissed the case:

The operator of a medical marijuana dispensary in Bellingham, Martin Nickerson, sued because he was being simultaneously prosecuted for marijuana distribution and targeted by the state Revenue Department for not collecting taxes on marijuana sales. He argued he couldn’t pay the tax without incriminating himself.

But the judge agreed with the state’s lawyers, who argued that federal law required the case to be brought in state court.

The medical marijuana industry in Washington had chances to create a regulated system but decided to keep operating in gray areas, rather than create a patient registry. I support the medical marijuana industry in Washington, however, I wish everything was above board and done in a regulated fashion. When laws, rules, and regulations are hazy, law enforcement takes advantage of the situation, especially federal law enforcement. This leads to issues with safe access for many patients.

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  • reefer

    its the Leary argument- but I do agree with its premise. How the fuck can people be willing to let the same govt. TAX you AND BUST YOU?? reminds me of a song I heard as a kid..
    This land is my land
    it is not your land
    i have a shotgun
    and you dont have one
    if you dont get off
    ill blow your head off
    THIS land was made for only me.

    • http://powerandcontrol.blogspot.com/ M. Simon

      I was going to bring up Leary. Thanks for getting there first.

  • Duncan20903

    The California Board of Equalization lets State authorized dispensaries to be non-specific to avoid that pesky infestation of Federal agents. Without any discount or exemption from the general sales tax rate it really doesn’t much matter to the CBoE either way.

    I’ll bet dollars to dirt that the sales tax authorization law in the State of Washington requires that even the black market vendors to collect and remit the appropriate sales tax.