SAN FRANCISCO — A federal judge says Lake County authorities must obtain a warrant before raiding homes to seize pot plants.

U.S. District Judge Thelton Henderson issued the ruling Tuesday in a case brought by Lake County residents whose homes were searched without warrants.

According to the San Francisco Chronicle (http://bit.ly/1wMsb43), Henderson said the residents would likely succeed in showing their constitutional rights were violated.

Lake County approved an ordinance in June that restricts the growing of medical marijuana. Lawyers for the county defended the searches, saying the ordinance declared illegal marijuana cultivation an immediate threat.

But Henderson said the county had failed to explain how cultivating more than six mature marijuana plants posed an imminent danger.

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Information from: San Francisco Chronicle, http://www.sfgate.com