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A 32–year-old Seattle woman who co-owned and operated two “medical marijuana” dispensaries, was sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Seattle to 42 months in prison for conspiracy to distribute marijuana and conspiracy to engage in money laundering, announced U.S. Attorney Jenny A. Durkan. JING JING MO, 32, was a co-owner of Seattle Cannabis Cooperative with locations in the Rainier Valley and Greenwood. She and her partner, Craig Douglas Dieffenbach, 61, pleaded guilty in August 2012. Both admitted selling marijuana for profit under the guise of running a cooperative for sick people. At sentencing, Chief U.S. District Judge Marsha J. Pechman said the defendants “abused the public trust” when they distributed marijuana to people without medical authorizations and in large amounts. “They did it for greed,” Chief Judge Pechman said.
In her plea agreement, Mo admitted offering to sell 25 pounds of marijuana for distribution across the country. The couple also admitted laundering funds from the sale of marijuana to pay to modify homes for marijuana production. The pair were also tied in to other drug traffickers including one distributing substantial amounts of ecstasy. The couple admitted operating the marijuana stores for profit, selling pound quantities of marijuana to people who presented no medical authorization card.
In asking for a 42 month sentence, prosecutors told the court, “Ms. Mo was not engaged in some selfless attempt to help truly sick people access marijuana for medical purposes. Instead, she was simply dealing drugs, for profit, in blatant violation of both the letter, and the spirit, of state and federal law. Calling her operation a medical marijuana dispensary was little more than a cynical attempt to hide her activities behind a fiction of quasi-legality.”
MO is a citizen of Singapore who likely will be deported following her prison term.
The case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration and was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Vince Lombardi.