It’s no secret there’s big money to be made in the marijuana industry. Ex-IRS agent Paul Hurley decided a Seattle dispensary could afford to lose a little of their profit.
After claiming he saved the company thousands on their tax return, Hurley demanded a $20,000 pay off. Now he faces trial after being caught in an FBI sting operation, according to CNN.
Ryan Kunkel, owner of the dispensary blackmailed, Have A Heart Compassion Care, participated in the deceptive plan to take Hurley down.
The FBI monitored two meetings between Kunkel and Hurley. During the first, Hurley received cash in a white envelope at Starbucks on Sept. 16. After the second meeting, on Sept. 21, Hurley was arrested for accepting a bribe.
“My recent actions have no place in the Federal Service and there is no way I could possibly write an apology to express the dissatisfaction and disgust I have within myself,” Hurley wrote to his boss in a resignation letter.
After reading this apology it appears to be a closed case, naming Hurley guilty. However, his lawyers claim he never accepted a bribe, but instead was paid for accounting services. They have also alluded that the government pressured Hurley to accept the payment.
U.S. District Judge John C. Coughenour will begin voir dire for the trial Monday. If convicted, accepting bribery charges can lead up to 15 years in prison with a $250,000 dollar fine. To read more about the case, see the full story.