Calif. pot dispensary owner gets 8 years from feds

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Updated: 1/24/2013 7:20 pm

SAN DIEGO (AP) — Federal prosecutors say a San Diego medical marijuana dispensary owner has been sentenced to more than eight years in prison for conspiracy to distribute marijuana and other crimes.

After Thursday's sentencing, U.S. Attorney Laura Duffy called Joshua Hester the "poster boy" for the types of marijuana dispensary operators the federal government is targeting for criminal investigation.

Duffy says Hester made millions of dollars by selling pot to recreational users, not seriously ill people, at the Downtown Kush Lounge and Green Kross Collective.

Hester pleaded guilty to eight felonies Jan. 3 and was immediately taken into custody after sentencing.

About 253 dispensaries in the district have received cease-and-desist letters from federal authorities. Duffy says all but about a dozen dispensaries have closed on their own.

 

©2013 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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