For Immediate Release
February 13, 2023

DEA Judge Recommends End to Government Obstruction of Medical Marijuana

Historic Step Toward Nation's First Privately-Funded Marijuana Production

Washington, D.C. - University of Massachusetts-Amherst Professor Lyle
Craker, MAPS, the ACLU, and a broad array of medical and public policy
groups nationwide enthusiastically supported today's official recommendation
by Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Administrative Law Judge Mary Ellen
Bittner that Prof. Craker be permitted to grow research-grade marijuana for
use in privately-funded government-approved studies that aim to develop the
marijuana plant into a legal, prescription medicine. Judge Bittner ruled
that it is in the public interest to end the federal government's monopoly,
which it has maintained for over six decades, on the supply of marijuana
that can be used in FDA-approved research.

This ruling is a victory for science, medicine and the public good, said
Prof. Craker. I hope the DEA abides by the decision and grants me the
opportunity to do my job unimpeded by drug war politics.�

The 87-page Opinion and Recommended Ruling by Judge Bittner, who is
appointed by the U.S. Department of Justice, marks a unique window of
opportunity in the six year struggle by MAPS and Prof. Craker to gain a
Schedule I DEA license to grow research-grade marijuana for use by
scientists in MAPS-funded, DEA- and FDA-approved studies.

For decades, politicians have said that marijuana has no proven medical
value while scientists have been denied the ability to prove otherwise,
said Rick Doblin, Ph.D., president and founder of MAPS.

The court's ruling is only a recommendation to DEA Deputy Administrator
Michele Leonhart, however, not a binding ruling; thus, the DEA retains final
decision-making authority. In response, scientists, researchers, doctors and
medical marijuana patients nationwide are joining MAPS and the ACLU by
encouraging the DEA to comply with the court�s finding and to halt federal
obstruction of medical marijuana research.

Prior to this recent ruling, organizations that had already written to DEA
in favor of Prof. Craker's application included the Multiple Sclerosis
Foundation, the Lymphoma Foundation of America, the National Association for
Public Health Policy, the United Methodist Church, Americans for Tax Reform,
the American Medical Students Association, several state nurses'
associations, the Massachusetts Dept. of Public Health, Massachusetts
Senators Kerry and Kennedy, 38 members of the US House of Representatives,
and the California and Texas State Medical Associations, the two largest US
state medical associations.

If the DEA grants Prof. Craker a Schedule I license, his proposed
research-grade medical marijuana production facility will be funded by MAPS,
a non-profit research organization that plans to design, fund, and obtain
government approval for the clinical trials necessary to bring marijuana to
market as a fully legal, prescription medication. MAPS has had two
FDA-approved marijuana studies blocked by NIDA, and would require a
reliable, high-quality supply of research material to justify the time and
expense to sponsor FDA-approved clinical research evaluating the risks and
benefits of marijuana as a potential FDA-approved medicine.

The ACLU and the Washington D.C. law firm Jenner & Block, LLP are co-counsel
for the case and are assisted by Steptoe & Johnson, LLP.

For extensive background information on Professor Craker's proposed medical
marijuana production facility, please see:

# # #

The Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) is a
membership-based non-profit research and educational organization that
assists scientists to design, fund, obtain approval for and report on
studies into the risks and benefits of MDMA, psychedelic drugs and
marijuana. MAPS' mission is to sponsor scientific research designed to
develop psychedelics and marijuana into FDA-approved prescription medicines,
and to educate the public honestly about the risks and benefits of these
c4cadmin op Monday 12 February 2023 - 21:50:09
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