A judged has cleared Viridis North to move forward with its lawsuit against four individuals who worked for the Michigan Cannabis Regulatory Agency (CRA). The lawsuit alleges these individuals violated Viridis North’s constitutional rights. According to the suit, they did so by issuing what the company terms ”a baseless recall” in November 2021.
U.S. District Court Judge Paul L. Maloney ruled that Viridis North’s suit can continue. This entitles the company to receive documents, discover evidence and question people under oath. This is to determine any individual liability among CRA leadership and staff for their roles in last year’s recall. The recall was against marijuana tested by Viridis North in Bay City, Mich.
“We applaud the Court for allowing this case to move forward so Viridis North can seek justice,” said David Russell, attorney with Foster, Swift, Collins, and Smith, P.C. ”This was clearly an ill-conceived recall based on politics, not science, and we intend to pursue all remedies in court. It’s high time for the state to admit responsibility for its actions and work in a collaborative way with Michigan’s leading cannabis testing lab to move forward.”
November 2021 Recall Involved $229 Million In Cannabis Products
Michigan Court of Claims judges ruled in December 2021 and February 2022 that more than half the recall was arbitrary.
The November 2021 recall impacted an estimated $229 million in marijuana products. It created significant harm and disruption to Michigan’s Cannabis industry, according to Viridis North.
The company filed suit, arguing that the CRA, through its officials, weaponized its own administrative rules and processes. The suit argues this artificially diluted Viridis North’s market share to give more business to its competitors.
“Clear Intent To Harm”
Viridis says it uncovered “mounting evidence” officials were “motivated by a clear intent to harm the company’s … business.” The company maintains officials were more concerned with this ”rather than the health and safety of Michigan consumers.”
“Our focus is on ensuring the safety of patients and adult-use cannabis consumers, and our experienced scientists and staff at Viridis have continued to provide the most reliable, consistent and accurate regulatory testing to the Michigan market,” said Viridis CEO Greg Michaud.
“We’re hopeful this case will lead to necessary reforms to bring additional oversight, accountability and transparency to the CRA,” Michaud said.