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Consultant Linked to Tribe’s Cannabis Resort Has Drug Case Dismissed

Jonathan Hunt, one of the cannabis consultants prosecuted in South Dakota for their role in the Flandreau Santee Sioux tribe’s cannabis resort plan, will have his drug cases dismissed, the Associated Press reports. Hunt, former vice-president and cultivation expert for Colorado-based Monarch America, was charged with conspiracy to possess between a half-pound and pound of cannabis.

A South Dakota judge agreed to suspend imposition of Hunt’s sentence, dismiss the case, and seal the record after he paid a $500 fine and $100 in court fees. Hunt had pleaded guilty to the charges.

“I feel free,” Hunt said in the report. “I think the whole thing never should have happened.”

The charges stem from Hunt and his former partner Eric Hagen’s roles in providing cultivation consulting services for the tribe, who planned an “adult playground” resort north of Sioux Falls. According to the AP, Hagen fought the charges and was ultimately acquitted by a jury.

The Santee Sioux ultimately abandoned the plan due to fears of federal interference and burned their cannabis crops. The tribe had estimated the resort, which was planned for a 2015 opening, would have earned $2 million per month.

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