The Highlands Ranch man who welcomed a 9News crew into his house to film a story on medical marijuana and was subsequently busted by the feds, is ready to make a deal. Westword talks with Christopher Bartkowicz's attorney, Joseph Saint-Veltri, who confirms an agreement has been made that will result in a five-year sentence if a federal judge agrees to it.
Bartkowicz was facing a possible life sentence for growing marijuana illegally, and the deal comes after the defense failed in numerous arguments based on Colorado's Amendment 20, which makes medical marijuana legal. The defense also failed to convince the judge of the relevance of statements from U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, who said agents should not pursue marijuana cases in states that allow medical marijuana if the state law is being followed, reports CBS4.
"Anyone reading [the memos] would quite clearly understand that cultivating marijuana is a violation of federal law," U.S. District Judge Philip A. Brimmer said in response (via The Associated Press).
Meanwhile, medical marijuana sales remain vigorous, to say the least. In Boulder, dispensaries and greenhouses are posting their highest sales--$1.6 million in August--since the city began issuing sales tax licenses last year. That translates to more than $54,000 in sales tax collections in one month for the city, notes Boulder's Daily Camera.
And the Colorado State Board of Health has given the green light to a program that allows poor medical-marijuana patients to apply for a registration certificate for free, clearing them of the obligation to pay sales tax on their cannabis purchases, writes The Denver Post.