Tiverton Arrest Results in Federal Marijuana Charges

As reported by W. Zachary Malinowski in the October 20, 2010 edition of the Providence Journal, a Tiverton man has been indicted on Federal drug charges. The man was originally charged under Rhode Island State law and had appeared before the Rhode Island District Court. These new charges mean he will now appear before the Federal Court and be subject to Federal penalties.

He is charged with "knowingly and intentionally manufacturing" more than one hundred (100) marijuana plants. As a medical marijuana patient, he was allowed to grow a maximum of twelve (12) marijuana plants, not the one hundred and fourteen (114) that the Tiverton Police recovered from his greenhouse. Because he is charged under Federal law, he is subject to harsher penalties if convicted, including a mandatory minimum jail sentence of five (5) years. In addition, his home could be confiscated as proceeds from drug trafficking.

Pursuant to R.I.G.L. 21-28-1.02(26) marijuana is defined as all parts of the plant cannabis sativa L., whether growing or not; the seeds of the plant; the resin extracted from any part of the plant; and every compound, manufacture, salt, derivative, mixture, or preparation of the plant, its seeds or resin, but shall not include the mature stalks of the plant, fiber produced from the stalks, oil or cake made from the seeds of the plant, any other compound, manufacture, salt, derivative, mixture, or preparation of mature stalks, (except the resin extracted from it), fiber, oil or cake, or the sterilized seed from the plant which is incapable of germination.

Possession of small amounts of marijuana, less than one (1) kilogram is a criminal misdemeanor. The penalties are outlined in R.I.G.L. 21-28-4.01(c)(2)(ii) and include a controlled substance classified in schedule I as marijuana is guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction may be imprisoned for not more than one year or fined not less than two hundred dollars ($200) nor more than five hundred dollars ($500), or both.

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