Philip Morris Appeals Tobacco Ban At Pharmacies

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Philip Morris USA is appealing a federal judge's decision to uphold a new San Francisco law banning tobacco sales by pharmacies.

Jack Marshall, a spokesman for Philip Morris, says the nation's No. 1 cigarette maker filed a notice of appeal Friday with the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

The company's lawsuit claims the city ban violates its free speech rights by preventing it from advertising in pharmacies. Marshall says it also prevents customers from buying tobacco products.

The appeal was filed hours after U.S. District Judge Claudia Wilken of Oakland turned down the company's request for an injunction.

The law, which does not cover so-called "big-box" retail stores like Costco, went into effect Oct. 1.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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