Legal pot in California irrelevant in Minn. case

By

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The state Court of Appeals has upheld the drug conviction for a man who claimed that since he can legally possess marijuana in California for medical purposes, Minnesota's law violates his rights.

Jeffrey Thiel was convicted of fifth-degree possession of a controlled substance after authorities found two jars of marijuana in his vehicle in 2011. He wanted the case dismissed, but the appeals court says his rights weren't violated.

Thiel also argued he should have been allowed to present a defense showing he can have the drug in California. But the appeals court says that evidence is irrelevant.

Thiel's attorney didn't immediately return a message seeking comment.

Minnesota recently passed legislation that bans smoking the drug, but allows certain patients to use it in oil or pill form.

©2014 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.