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Monday, May 06, 2013

Ind. Decisions - Court of Appeals issues 1 today (and 3 NFP)

For publication opinions today (1):

In Love Jeet Kaur v. State of Indiana , a 9-page opinion, Judge Bradford writes:

To combat what it perceives to be the growing problem of synthetic drugs such as “Spice,” “Bath Salt,” and “Black Mamba,” the General Assembly has enacted a statutory scheme that defines such drugs and criminalizes dealing or possessing them (referred to collectively as “the Synthetic Drug Law”). One feature of the Synthetic Drug Law is that the Indiana Board of Pharmacy (“the Board”) is given the power to declare new compounds illegal synthetic drugs by emergency rule. Appellant/Defendant Love Jeet Kaur has been charged with dealing and possession of a synthetic drug, AM-2201. In this interlocutory appeal, Kaur contends that the trial court erred in denying her motion to dismiss the charges against her because (1) the charging information was not specific enough to put her on notice of the crime with which she was being charged, (2) the Synthetic Drug Law is unconstitutionally vague, and (3) the Synthetic Drug Law represents an unconstitutional delegation of legislative authority. The State counters that the charging information along with the probable cause affidavit are sufficient to put Kaur on notice regarding the criminal charges against her. Responding to the vagueness argument, the State counters that the Synthetic Drug Law is not vague as applied to Kaur and is not inherently vague in any event. As for the delegation argument, the State argues that Kaur’s charges, because they are not based on a synthetic drug designated by the Board, are not the result of any delegation and also that the delegation itself was proper. Because we conclude that the charging information and probable cause affidavit were sufficient to place Kaur on notice, the Synthetic Drug Law is not vague as applied to Kaur, and the Synthetic Drug Law does not represent an unconstitutional delegation of legislative power as applied to Kaur, we affirm the trial court’s denial of Kaur’s motion to dismiss. * * *

Kaur contends that the General Assembly’s delegation to the Board of the power to designate new synthetic drugs violates the Distribution of Powers Clause.

We need not reach the merits of Kaur’s argument on this point. The State argues that because AM-2201 was specifically made illegal by the General Assembly, not through the rulemaking power of the Board, the Distribution of Powers Clause is not implicated in this case. We agree.

NFP civil opinions today (2):

Property-Owners Insurance Company v. Grandview One (NFP)

Carol Raper, Executor of the Estate of Timothy Raper v. Jill A. Haber, Darrell Havey, and Jane Harvey (NFP)

NFP criminal opinions today (1):

Bryan Delaney v. State of Indiana (NFP)

Posted by Marcia Oddi on May 6, 2013 02:04 PM
Posted to Ind. App.Ct. Decisions