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John C. Lemon

John C. Lemon

Criminal Defense and Marijuana Defense Lawyer
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Law Offices of John C. Lemon, APC
San Diego, CA

About John C. Lemon

Attorney Biography

For over 15 years, John C. Lemon has been on the front lines of the resistance to the federal war on drugs. First as a federal public defender and currently as a criminal-defense attorney specializing in drug-trafficking, racketeering (RICO), and other complex cases, he has successfully defended clients in hundreds of cannabis prosecutions (most of them in the federal courts). He has won numerous acquittals, dismissals, and motions to suppress evidence in drug-trafficking cases, as well as the reversals of convictions and sentences in the federal appellate courts.

Cannabis prohibition is ending. The question is not "if," but "when." But these are uncertain times, especially for small business. Cannabis remains classified by the DEA as a Schedule I controlled substance (having no redeeming medical or other value), and is still completely banned by the federal government. And although Prop 64 created a five-year window for small businesses to launch before big corporations (e.g., "Big Tobacco," "Big Pharma," and "Big Agri") can apply for licenses, that head start for small business will necessarily coincide with a new Justice Department headed by Attorney General Jeff Sessions, a vehement opponent of everything cannabis. This compounds the uncertainty.

Accordingly, prudent members of the industry -- especially those who wish to be in total compliance with California and local law -- cannot afford to lose sight of the federal implications of their work. To that end, Mr. Lemon is expanding his practice area beyond criminal defense to include all facets of cannabis representation (i.e., medical and adult-use licensing and other transactional work). The objective is to assist clients in a completely new way: to help them build sustainable businesses in an uncharted era of regulation and enforcement.

Mr. Lemon is certified as a Criminal Trial Specialist by the National Board of Trial Advocacy and the California State Bar, is rated "AV" (the highest rating for legal skill and ethics) by Martindale Hubbell, and is consistently recognized in the San Diego "Super Lawyers" and Best Lawyers in America publications. He holds a BA from the University of Oklahoma (with distinction) and a JD from Stanford Law School. He is licensed to practice in the State of California, the Southern District of California, the Central District of California, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, and the United States Supreme Court.

The firm's website is located at http://www.jcl-lawoffice.com/.

Practice Areas

Criminal Defense (30%)
Marijuana Defense (29%)
White Collar Crime (23%)
Civil Trial Law (18%)

Résumé - John C. Lemon

Bar Licenses

California State Bar
Member in Good Standing

Work Experience

Law Offices of John C. Lemon, APC

Federal Defenders of San Diego, Inc.

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Stanford Law School
Stanford Law School

University of Oklahoma
B.A. with Distinction

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Specialty Certifications

National Board of Trial Advocacy
Board Certified Specialist
Criminal Trial Advocacy
National Board of Trial Advocacy


National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws
National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws

Awards & Recognitions

Best Lawyers in America
Best Lawyers

Super Lawyers of San Diego
Law & Politics

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Contact John C. Lemon

John C. Lemon
Law Offices of John C. Lemon, APC
1350 Columbia St Suite 600
San Diego, CA 92101
Office: 619-794-0423

More Information

Bar Membership Information

California Bar Membership -

John C. Lemon - Profile information with the State Bar of California - Find more information about John C. Lemon on the State Bar of California website, including: current status, actions affecting eligibility to practice law and disciplinary history.

Nonprofit Organizations

National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws NLC -

More than 350 criminal defense attorneys belong to the NORML National Legal Committee (NLC). Members of the NORML NLC include many prominent criminal defense lawyers who are dedicated to ending prohibition of marijuana through education, legal reform and activism. Attorneys focused on other practice areas also belong to the organization.

NLC members are listed on the NORML website, are eligible for the NLC e-mail discussion group, receive the weekly email press release, and NORML News.

The NORML website also maintains its own