A Florida man, who was forced to kill an intruder who invaded his home over the weekend, could now be facing a stiff prison term for a couple of marijuana-related offenses.
Reports indicate that 37-year-old Michael Mora of Hialeah (Miami-Dade County) was hanging around the house on Saturday afternoon when four men came blasting in with blitzkrieg enthusiasm and attempted to rob him.
However, before this group of thugs could gain control of the house, Mora whipped out a pistol and retaliated with rounds of lead, killing one of the assailants. The other three scoundrels managed to escape, making their getaway in a green car, according to CBS Miami.
It was at this point when Mora, who has already served two stints in a Florida penitentiary for felonious crimes related to the possession of a firearm, must have come to the conclusion that his time as a free man was coming to an end. One man was now dead, and with the sound of police sirens reverberating on the horizon, there wasn’t nearly enough time to dispose of the other incriminating element he had been working on somewhere on the premises. His only hope was that the dead body riddled with bullets would somehow be enough for police to contend without forcing them to dig deeper into his personal business in an attempt to establish a motive.
But Mora was not that lucky.
After the corpse was cleared from the scene, a team of special investigators was called in to get to the bottom of the shooting. It was during this time that police began to piece together the primary reason a pack of desperate men had kicked down Mora’s door and upset his modest abode with violent intent. Inside the home, police say they found an extensive marijuana cultivation operation and somewhere around 200 pounds of weed.
“The victim was targeted because of the illegal activities at his own residence,” Hialeah police Sgt. Carl Zogby told the Miami Herald. “During the shooting investigation, a fully operational marijuana hydroponics lab was discovered inside a portion of the home. The suspects knew this and intended to rob the resident of cash and/or drugs.”
So far, Mora is not being charged in the murder of 25-year-old Ihosdanny Brena Colarte. But the bad news is police are going after him for the manufacture and trafficking of marijuana—a felony offense that could earn him up to 15 years in prison and fines reaching $25,000.
Although Florida recently legalized marijuana for medical purposes, there is still a roaring opportunity for black market shenanigans, such as this one. That’s because only those patients with around 10 qualified health conditions will eventually have access to legal marijuana, while the rest of the state will be forced to lean on the illegal trade to get their hands on the herb.
Perhaps it is time for Florida lawmakers to follow in the footsteps of eight other states and completely overhaul prohibition in their neck of the woods.
You can keep up with all of HIGH TIMES’ marijuana news right here.
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