A medical marijuana advocacy group is amending its lawsuit filed against the state, Governor Mary Faillin, the Oklahoma State Health Department and members of the Oklahoma Department of Health.
Last Friday, Green The Vote filed a lawsuit, claiming the Department of Health violated the Open Meeting Acts when it added amendments to the State Questions 788 guidelines. Now, the group says they are adding additional charges.
Ronald Durbin, Attorney for Green The Vote, is naming two additional defendants – former OSDH general counsel Julia Ezell and Executive Director of Oklahoma State Board of Pharmacy Chelsea Church.
Church is being investigated by the Oklahoma Bureau of Investigation for bribery related text messages exchanged concerning the medical marijuana rules. Church offered a Julia Ezell a job if the medical marijuana rules went in favor of the Board of Pharmacy, according to the text messages.
Ezell resigned as the Department of Health General Counsel after she allegedly falsified threatening messages against herself. She faces three counts including falsely reporting a made-up crime.
“We believe that this is just a starting point of the corruption that is going on as it relates to the regulations in this implementation. And we believe, as we said in the very beginning in the filing of this lawsuit, that we believe members of the board of the Oklahoma department of health, may have been participating in similar schemes. And, there very well may be additional boards and additional politicians in this state that have participated. We plan on going after every one of them,” said Attorney for Green The Vote Ronald Durbin, in light of the accusation that Church offered Ezell a job.
Green The Vote also wants Oklahoma County district judges to impanel a grand jury to investigate the case.