Scott Feil

Scott Feil

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Scott Feil

 


Scott Feil

Scott Feil is a California businessman and former medical marijuana dispensary owner. The medical marijuana dispensary in question, United Medical Caregivers Clinic, was operating in 2005 when it became the target of local and federal legal action.

Scott Feil became interested in medical marijuana following the death of his father in 1998. His first dispensary was opened in the city of Ukiah. After a few years of successful operation, he decided to open another dispensary in Los Angeles. In both cases, operation of the dispensaries was approved by the state. The dispensaries were two of 74 licensed at that time to operate in the state.

In March 2005, a Los Angeles Police Department officer examined the paperwork of the United Medical Caregivers Clinic. The clinic was opened 2003 after Scott Feil obtained paperwork approving his operation from the state of California. Many medical marijuana dispensaries operate in the state, though their status under federal law is unclear. After visiting the clinic, the police obtained a search warrant from a judge. However, during their application they did not document the previous visit or note that they were aware that the clinic was operating legally under state law.

The United Medical Caregivers Clinic was subsequently raided by the LAPD, which confiscated $186,416 it claimed were obtained as part of illegal transactions. Scott Feil subsequently filed an appeal seeking a return of these assets, arguing that they were legally obtained under California law. A federal court found that the warrant used in the raid had been obtained in a misleading way, but still ruled that Scott Feil had forfeited his funds.

Scott Feil appealed this decision to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. In 2009, the court ruled in favor of Scott Feil, ordering the LAPD to return the confiscated funds. In its decision, the court noted its concern that the LAPD could conduct similar illegal searches for its own enrichment. However, prior to the return of this verdict Scott Feil was became the defendant in federal criminal charges related to his previous ownership of the United Medical Caregivers Clinic, which was sold after 2005 and ceased operation in 2007. Scott Feil was charged with tax evasion and other legal infractions related to operation of the clinic.

The resulting case, known as USA v. Feil, was initially resolved when Scott Feil agreed to plead guilty and accept a plea bargain that would result in a large financial penalty. However, after this agreement was reached, the terms of the plea bargain were changed. The government said it wanted Scott Feil to serve five years in federal prison. Charges were also filed against his wife, his father in law, and three other former participants in the operation of the United Medical Caregivers Clinic. In preparing his defense, Scott Feil's lawyers planned to once again focus on the issue of misconduct by the prosecuting authorities. 

 

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