RICO Lawsuits and Banking Issues in the Cannabis Industry

(132 Ratings)

Produced on: December 01, 2017

Course Format On Demand Audio

Taught by


Course Description

Time 60 minutes
Difficulty Intermediate

In this program, Meyer Suozzi partner Hanan Kolko will address two specific legal issues facing cannabis industry clients: RICO lawsuits against industry participants, and the problems that arise out of providing banking services to those in the industry. 

As background, the course will briefly cover the conflict between state cannabis laws and the federal Controlled Substances Act, including the current status of federal enforcement policy and the Cole Memo. The program will then provide a quick overview of RICO enforcement, and discuss two cases dealing with the cannabis industry: the decision  of the 10th Circuit Court Of Appeals in Safe Streets Alliance v Hickenlooper (including the current status of the case) and McCart v Beddow, an Oregon RICO lawsuit. Specifically, the course will assist attorneys in understanding how to minimize the RICO risk for their clients.

The course will also cover banking issues such as the FINCEN cannabis banking data as of March 31, 2017, the February 14, 2014 FINCEN and DOJ guidance memos, and the decision of the 10th Circuit Court Of Appeals in Fourth Corner Credit Union v Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City. The program will also focus briefly on possible federal legislative solutions such as HR 2215. 

Learning Objectives:

  1. Understand the conflict between state and federal law and the current status of federal enforcement

  2. Review the current RICO landscape for cannabis clients

  3. Survey issues in providing banking services to the cannabis industry, including advising financial services or cannabis industry clients


Hanan Kolko

Meyer, Suozzi, English & Klein, P.C.

Hanan Kolko is the co-chair and co-founder of the Meyer, Suozzi, English & Klein Medical Cannabis practice group. As a member of the National Cannabis Bar Association’s Amicus Committee, Mr. Kolko works with individuals and businesses in the cannabis industry. He assists on matters including state law license application issues, regulatory compliance, legislative drafting and analysis and governmental investigations. Mr. Kolko often speaks on cannabis industry legal issues. He has spoken in forums sponsored by organizations such as, Crain’s New York, Cardozo Law School, Women Grow, the Long Island Association, the Cannabis and Hemp Association, and the International Cannabis Association. He has also made cannabis law CLE presentations on behalf of CLE providers including Cardozo Law School, the Nassau County Bar Association, the Theodore Roosevelt Inn of Court, Law Lines, and Clear Law Institute.

Mr. Kolko is also the co-author of a New York Law Journal article entitled “Marijuana Advertising and The First Amendment.” Mr. Kolko serves on the boards of the Freelancers Union and the Freelancers Insurance Company. He is the former co-chair of the Committee on Technology in The Workplace of the ABA’s Labor and Employment Section. Since 2012, Mr. Kolko has been recognized by New York Super Lawyers.

Mr. Kolko received his J.D. from University of Michigan in 1985, graduating cum laude with a Book Award in Labor Law. He received his B.S. from Cornell University in 1982, where he studied Industrial and Labor Relations.


Kipp L.

Good presentation.

Kelly S.

Much more interesting than I had anticipated.

John W.

Good presentation

Elijah M.

Very well done. Easy to follow.

Stanley S.

very iinformative, well presented

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$ 59 Banking Law, Contract Law, and Food, Beverage, & Agriculture In Stock


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