District Court Upholds DEA Decision to Suspend Neil Laboratories
On January 16, 2002, investigators and agents from the DEA/ Newark Field Division, during the execution of a criminal search warrant, delivered an Immediate Suspension Order issued by DEA Administrator Asa Hutchinson to Bharat PATEL, President of NEIL LABORATORIES, INC., at 55 Lake Drive, East Windsor, New Jersey. At that time, among other things, NEIL LABORATORIES ability to manufacture DEA regulated List I Chemicals was suspended immediately and all NEIL LABORATORIES List I Chemicals were seized.
On or about August 29, 2002 the United States District Court for the District of Columbia issued a Memorandum Opinion and Order under civil action 02-0428 (RMU) which upheld the immediate suspension order by DEA.
NEIL LABORATORIES INC., brought this suit alleging John Ashcroft, acting in his official capacity, Asa Hutchinson, acting in his official capacity and DEA wrongfully suspended NEIL LABORATORIES registration to manufacture list I chemicals. The plaintiff, in its motion for summary judgment, argued that the DEA's Suspension Order violated the Administrative Procedure Act ("APA"), the Controlled Substance Act ("CSA") and the Fifth Amendment. In its August 29th written opinion, the court dismissed Neil Laboratories challenge to DEA's suspension order. The court found that DEA rationally concluded that Neil Laboratories posed an imminent danger to public health and safety; therefore the court upheld the validity of the suspension.