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Monster Sues San Francisco City Attorney in Caffeine Dispute

Monster Beverage Corp. sued San Francisco’s city attorney over demands that the energy drink maker reduce caffeine in its beverages and stop marketing to minors.

Monster’s labels and drinks are regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, not the city, and San Francisco’s demands violate U.S. free speech and interstate commerce laws, lawyers for the company said in a complaint filed today in federal court in Riverside, California.

The Corona, California-based company seeks a court order finding San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera’s investigation of Monster drinks unconstitutional and blocking him from bringing suit against the company.

Matt Dorsey, a spokesman for Herrera, didn’t immediately respond to an e-mail seeking comment about the complaint.

The case is Monster Beverage Corp. (MNST) v. Herrera, 13-786, U.S. District Court, Central District of California (Riverside).

To contact the reporter on this story: Karen Gullo in San Francisco at kgullo@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at mhytha@bloomberg.net

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