Former US officials convicted for bribery over cannabis dispensary permit

Two former city officials in Calexico, California, were sentenced to two years in prison for accepting bribes in exchange for permission to open a commercial cannabis dispensary.

Former Calexico City Councilman David Romero and former Commissioner of the City Advisory Commission for Economic Development and Financial Affairs Bruno Suarez-Soto received $ 35,000 bribes from an undercover FBI agent, according to the press service of the US Department of Justice. The agent introduced himself as a businessman wishing to open a cannabis dispensary.

In return for the bribes, Romero and Soto guaranteed the rapid issuance of a city permit for the dispensary.

While accepting the bribe, one of the men told the undercover agent that «this is not their first rodeo».

The California Cannabis Use Act became legal on January 1, 2018