9th U.S. Circuit Court to Hear Appeal on Seizure of Hemp Shipment in Idaho

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Big Sky Scientific says it has been granted a hearing before the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals as it seeks the release of nearly 7,000 pounds of industrial hemp that was seized by Idaho authorities during a routine safety inspection on Jan. 24 near Boise.

“We are encouraged that our appeal will be heard on an expedited schedule,” said Ryan Shore, CEO of Big Sky Scientific.

Big Sky Scientific says it has been granted a hearing before the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals as it seeks the release of nearly 7,000 pounds of industrial hemp that was seized by Idaho authorities during a routine safety inspection on Jan. 24 near Boise.

The Circuit Court appeal (Case No. 19-35138) was granted Thursday after a federal district judge on Tuesday declined to order the shipment released to its owner, Big Sky Scientific of Aurora, Colo.

“We are encouraged that our appeal will be heard on an expedited schedule,” said Ryan Shore, CEO of Big Sky Scientific. The company purchases hemp crops from farmers and sells it to processors who refine it into cannabidiol (CBD) and to manufacturers who make legal CBD products sold at pharmacies and major retailers across the U.S.

“We were disappointed that the district judge denied our request for a preliminary injunction, but we’re hopeful the Circuit Court will order the release of our property,” Shore said. “We are confident that Idaho authorities violated several provisions of federal law in arresting the owner-operator of the truck and seizing our cargo.”

Big Sky Scientific purchased the hemp from Boones Ferry Berry Farms in Hubbard, Ore., and was shipping it to Colorado when it was seized on Interstate 84.

Though Chief Magistrate Judge Ronald E. Bush denied the request for a preliminary injunction releasing the hemp, he did note that additional testing of the shipment by Idaho authorities showed “there is no evidence in the record that the seized load does not meet the definition of industrial hemp … (having a △-9 THC concentration level of 0.3 percent or less …. No testing has reported a greater than 0.3% concentration level of △-9 THC.)” The exact results from the tests conducted by Idaho authorities remain under seal.

Shore said farmers see great opportunities in raising hemp as a cash crop. His company is working with farmers across America to increase their efficiency and lower costs. Big Sky Scientific is also developing new processing methods and custom distillation equipment to streamline the process that helps bring the health benefits of CBD products to more people.

“We are blessed to operate in an industry that has the ability to greatly increase the profitability and living standards of American farmers,” Shore said. “It is further gratifying that the health products made from industrialized hemp provides great comfort to millions of people in this country.” CBD is used in EPIDIOLEX, an antiepileptic seizure medicine prescribed to patients 2 years of age and older.

Idaho is one of only two Western states where the growing and processing of industrialized hemp remains illegal. Idaho State Reps. Dorothy Moon, R-Stanley, and Caroline Nilsson Troy, R-Genesee, have introduced legislation this term to legalize industrial hemp in Idaho as part of an effort to improve the profitability of local farmers.

For more information, contact Big Sky Scientific CEO Ryan Shore at 702-682-5400.

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