DEA says Minnesota head shops "jumped the gun" in lawsuit

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency says that a collection of Minnesota head shops jumped the gun when they sued the DEA over a ban on synthetic marijuana in December.

The ban isn't even in place.

The agency says in court papers filed yesterday that the head shop owners filed suit based on the DEA's notice of intent to ban the products. But the soonest an actual ban would take place is Feb. 1.

Government lawyers also assert that the temporary restraining order sought by the head shops filed in federal district court should have been filed in the court of appeals.

The head shop owners allege the ban on five of the most commonly used synthetic cannabinoids is unconstitutional, violates the separation of powers, and skirted mandatory review processes.

The DEA says the head shops are selling products that pose serious health risks to anyone using them.

The owners of the Last Place on Earth in Duluth, the Hideaway in Dinkytown, Down in the Valley in the western suburbs, and Disc and Tape in St. Cloud say the ban will put them out of business because it would take away a major source of revenue.

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