A marijuana delivery app that's been described as the "Uber for weed" was officially cut off from doing business in L.A.
Local Judge Robert H. O'Brien issued a preliminary injunction against Nestdrop after the L.A. City Attorney's Office targeted it for civil action.
City Attorney Mike Feuer said that marijuana delivery is not legal in L.A., even if it involves legit shops and doctor-approved patients.
He argued that Proposition D, passed by L.A. voters in 2013, outlawed delivery and only really allows 135 brick-and-mortar collectives to operate in town.
Just before the holiday break, Feuer declared victory. He said:
This app is a flagrant attempt to circumvent the will of the voters who passed Prop D and we are pleased the court ordered Nestdrop to stop facilitating medical marijuana delivery. Prop D strikes a balance between the needs of patients and the desire of neighborhoods to regulate the proliferation of medical marijuana dispensaries. Prop D also provides that caregivers are able to transport medical marijuana to legitimate patients.
The City Attorney's Office isn't done, either. It's still looking to get civil penalties against the app company for alleged unfair business practices.
Nestdrop Co-Founder Michael Pycher put out this response:
We disagree with Judge L.A. Superior Court Judge Robert O'Brien's ruling as we are simply a technology company that connects patients in need with their medicine in a safe, secure manner. From day one, we've made it clear that Nestdrop does not grow, cultivate or deliver any medical marijuana and that our qualified partners manage each of these activities. Today's ruling does not stop the delivery of medical marijuana in Los Angeles by the dozens of delivery services in the city; it only restricts Nestdrop from communicating information between a patient and a dispensary.
We do not understand why the city is trying to restrict law-abiding residents' access to the medicine that has been prescribed to them by their doctors. Patients use Nestdrop in order to have their medicine delivered, often because they are either too sick from their symptoms or unwilling to inconvenience a friend or loved one that would need to go to the collective on their behalf. Nestdrop also helped to add legitimacy to an industry that needed it and we helped patients feel more secure and confident in their choices.
While we agree with certain aspects of Proposition D, we believe the prohibition on delivery services is unnecessary and enforcement is a misuse of taxpayer funds. In fact, delivery services minimize the need for storefront dispensaries in residential areas -- a point of issue in Proposition D -- as these services bring the medicine directly to patients, no matter the location.
We are evaluating our options for the future in regards to Los Angeles and hope the city will change its misguided attempt at restricting medicine for patients. Until then, Nestdrop will continue to service all areas outside of Los Angeles' city limits.