This week in law

An incubator nabs legal counsel; cannabis trafficking keeps law enforcement busy and Eugene firm takes on massage franchise sexual assault case.

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Here’s what you need to know about statewide happenings in the legal biz:

A fresh start

Portland’s biggest law firm wants in on the startup action. Stoel Rives LLP and the Portland Incubator Experiment partnered to offer legal expertise to one of the city’s newest incubators.

Oregon weed makes its way to Texas, Virginia and Florida

U.S. Attorney Billy Williams announced charges against six people for running a “vast” marijuana trafficking operation. During a recent economic summit, Williams expressed frustration that Oregon cannabis overproduction has led to trafficking to 37 states.

Even legal cannabis growers are in hot water

Laura Underwood, a Sandy resident, didn’t like living next to a cannabis farm. So she sued all 200 companies with whom they did business. Overreacting, much? Possibly. But the outcome could put thousands of legal cannabis businesses at risk.

Illinois lawyers pick a fight with Oregon

The Liberty Justice Center, a conservative legal nonprofit, sent cease and desist letters to the State of Oregon, the City of Portland and Portland Public Schools, citing a recent Supreme Court decision that ruled organizations can’t require non-union employees to pay union dues.  

An infamous Missouri prosecutor arrives, with a racist Powerpoint

Several DAs, including Multnomah County District Attorney Rod Underhill, walked out of a presentation from a keynote speaker at the Bend Oregon District Attorneys Association Summer Conference. The speaker was Bob McCulloch, the prosecutor who declined to indict a Ferguson police officer for shooting an unarmed black man in 2014. McCulloch pointed at a photo of young black men standing together and said: “This is what we’re dealing with.”

Sheriffs split on “sanctuary state” status

On Monday, sheriffs in 16 rural counties called for an end to Oregon’s “sanctuary state” status. Civil rights leaders were quick to debunk the sheriffs’ claim that immigrants perpetrate more crimes than other Oregonians.

Asylum seekers find a long-awaited sanctuary

Eight asylum seekers were released from a federal detention center in Sheridan last week, a coup for Portland-based digital law project Innovation Law Lab.  

Massage Envy sued for sexual battery

Six women filed a lawsuit against Massage Envy saying they were touched or penetrated during appointments.  Last year, 180 people described similar experiences. The suit states that Massage Envy does not require its franchises to disclose assaults to “protect the brand.” Eugene firm Johnson Johnson Lucas & Middleton has been retained in the case.

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