Dan Tang's Day in Court

April 1 2010, 10:30 AM

Federal drug agents thought Dan Tang should spend more time behind bars, but a judge has instead sentenced the local restaurateur to 18 months in prison for funding a massive marijuana-growing operation. On the other hand, Chief U.S. District Judge Wiley Y. Daniel decided not to grant a probationary sentence that would have prevented Tang from being imprisoned, as requested by defense attorneys who argued that Tang suffered mental and physical ailments, notes The Denver Post. Tang, 47, the owner of Heaven Dragon restaurant, wept during the hearing and addressed the court in both English and his native Cantonese. "I am very remorseful for all the past wrongs I have committed," Tang said. "I know I have done a big, big wrong. Big mistake. It jeopardized all my family members and it also affected my society, my community." In November, Tang pleaded guilty to money laundering and was ordered to forfeit $1 million in cash to the government. In exchange, prosecutors agreed to recommend a sentence well below the recommended 70 to 87 months in prison. Tang's biggest mistake? According to the judge it was that he culturally and psychologically did not know how to say "no," Westword points out: "You can be generous to everyone in the world, but you can't be generous to the extent that it violates the law."

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