Religious Marijuana Lawsuit Gets New Life in 9th Cir.

The Oklevueha Native American Church of Hawaii sued the Justice Department and Drug Enforcement Administration after agents seized a $7,000 shipment of marijuana addressed to the church’s founder in 2009, The Wall Street Journalreports.

The church’s lawsuit demanded the return of, or reimbursement for, the seized pot, which was intended for use during religious ceremonies. The church also sought a declaratory judgment affirming the legality of its members’ religious marijuana use.

The federal Controlled Substances Act allows the religious use of peyote, which church members also use — but it does not create an exemption for religious marijuana. That’s why the church wants a court to declare religious pot use is OK, to protect its members from possible legal action.

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