By Anthony Martinelli

The Appellate Division of the New Jersey Superior Court has ruled that the state must consider reclassifying marijuana due to the fact that marijuana’s health benefits are “abundantly and glaringly apparent now”.

The court ruled that Steve Lee, former director of the Division of Consumer Affairs, had the legal authority to reclassify marijuana away from Schedule 1 when he denied a request in 2014. The ruling says states that since New Jersey has now had a long-running medical marijuana program, the government must revisit the issue and again consider whether marijuana should be removed as a Schedule 1 drug, which indicates it has no medical value and is as dangerous as substances such as heroin.

According to Attorney Joseph Linares of Newark, who brought forth the case on behalf of inmate Steven Kadonsky, the state may decide to keep marijuana a Schedule 1 drug following the ruling, though they can’t do so because the substance has no medical value.

Linares says the ruling is “an important incremental step” toward reclassifying marijuana. “What this decision does recognize is the widespread acceptance of marijuana use in medical treatment,” says Linares.

To view the full 42-page ruling, click here.

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