Medical marijuana use on federal supervised release when all medically prescribed alternatives fail?

The panel affirmed the district court’s denial of Richard Langley’s renewed motion to amend the conditions of his supervised release to permit him to use medical marijuana as allowed by California state law.

Langley, who submitted a report from a physician opining that marijuana was the best medical solution for his pain issues, argued that he has a fundamental constitutional right under the Fourteenth Amendment’s Due Process Clause to use medical marijuana. The panel held that it is bound by Raich v. Gonzales, 500 F.3d 8850 (9th Cir. 2007), which rejected the identical substantive due process claim. Langley argued that the panel is no longer bound by Raich’s conclusion in light of the increasing number of states that no longer criminalize the use of medical marijuana for medical purposes. The panel wrote that even if state laws decriminalizing marijuana could constitute additional evidence under the test applied in Raich for determining whether a right is protected by the Due Process Clause, the panel is bound by the holding in Raich until such time as it is overturned by a higher authority.


Anton Vialtsin, Esq.
LAWSTACHE™ LAW FIRM | Criminal Defense and Business Law
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